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Thursday, December 1, 2016

THE CORN MAZE CARNIVORES

Artist conception of a killer Pumpkin.
By Ted Colin
Associate Editor
Humor News Nuts Publications

This time of year, the corn maze is a popular stop for many people looking for some fall fun. This year I received a call from the Van Wooten farm which is located in Grand Traverse County. The caller was Mr. Van Wooten .He was very concerned that some of their guests have been going into the corn maze but never coming out. The parking area was full of vehicles and Mr. Van Wooten was afraid that he would have to take out a mortgage on his farm to pay to have all the vehicles towed away. I asked him how many cars and trucks he was talking about and he replied that at last count there were 37 abandoned vehicles. I agreed to investigate the mystery of the missing guest. Gerrard, a coworker, agreed to help me look around the Van Wooten farm.

The Van Wooten farm has one of the most popular and difficult to navigate corn mazes in the area. The Van Wooten family has been farming the land for more than 60 years. The farm house was big and white. There were two red barns and several other outbuildings and two silos at the end of the largest barn. The farm raised primarily corn but, the Van Wooten family also sold fruits and vegetables from their garden and mini orchard. When Gerrard and I pulled up the driveway we saw Mr. Van Wooten standing on his porch waiting for us. I almost freaked out when I saw all the vehicles parked to one side of the house near the entrance of the corn maze.

There were about a dozen high school kids and a couple of families walking into the corn maze. Evidently the maze was still open for business. Gerrard and I went up to the porch where Mr. Van Wooten was standing. Mr. Van Wooten was about 35 years old, clean cut with a clean shave. Mr. Van Wooten greeted us “Hello Boys. What can I do for you?”

I introduced us “My name is Ted Colin and this is Gerrard my associate. We are here to investigate the problems you’re having with your corn maze.”

“Well,” began Van Wooten, “the problem is that a lot of people have been going in but not too many ever make it out. I even sent my dog in and he never came out. I’d go in myself but I’m allergic to corn stalks. I get all itchy and watery eyed and break out in a rash. My wife handles the business at the maze. She’s busy inside now with some housework. She just took in some money from those people over there disappearing into the maze. I sure hope a few of them make it out.”

I asked Mr. Van Wooten if he’d mind us looking around the maze and he said, “Be my guest. I won’t even charge you. In fact, if you can solve the mystery I’ll let you have any vehicle on the lot if you know how to hot wire it of course. I already checked them all and the keys must have gone with the owners into the maze.”

Before Gerrard and I could enter the maze, a horrible old lady appeared at the entrance. She was so wrinkled it was hard to find her mouth and eyes on her face. She had less than a hundred long gray hairs on her head and her skin was as gray as her hair. Her fingers were long and bony with long jagged yellow fingernails on the tips. She raised a long bony index finger and she gave us a warning in a shrill, dramatically slow voice, “Many people go in this corn maze but, few ever come out. Be wary or you will be its next victims.”

“Thanks lady,” I said. Then Gerrard and I proceeded into the maze. We did not travel more than 20 feet down the maze when everything became suddenly dark. We turned around and the entrance to the maze was gone. Nightfall had come and we were trapped inside the mysterious corn maze. We continued down the maze and found that around each bend in the maze there was a single lit teakee torch. After about the second bend, we started to encounter Jack-O-Lanterns. At first there were just a few down each corridor but suddenly, there were dozens. Each corridor was only about 50 feet long so we were surrounded by Jack-O-Lanterns. Each Jack-O-Lantern seemed to have the same grimacing smile with long, saw tooth like fangs.

“Every time I turn around I end up with my foot in the mouth of one of these Jack-O-Lanterns,” complained Gerrard. “I hope we don’t get in trouble for stepping on them.”

Suddenly, we heard some screaming and yelling ahead of us. “Sounds like it gets spookier up ahead,” Gerrard observed. “The people ahead of us sound like they’re having a really good time.”

“I guess so,” I answered nervously. There just seemed to be something wrong going on. I wasn’t quite sure what it was?
I found that my feet and ankles were constantly ending up in the mouth of one of the pumpkin heads. I had to keep kicking the Jack-O-Lanterns off my legs like I have to kick off Madam Misty Merkel’s dog. You can’t go over to her trailer without her dog all over you. The pumpkins were even worse since there were hundreds of them and they were a lot bigger than the dog. In fact, as we proceeded through the maze the pumpkins we were encountering seemed to be getting bigger. Finally, we got to some that were as tall as our shins. These seemed to have some red liquid dripping off the fangs. Gerrard and I figured that red jelly must have been used to make people think the pumpkins had blood dripping from their mouths.

Around the next bend we observed what we thought were fake blood soaked body parts lying around. We saw a couple of heads, some arms and a leg were stuck in the mouth of a really huge Jack-O-Lantern which gave the affect that the leg was being eaten. Then we came to a dead end in the maze. We turned to walk back the way we came but, somehow hundreds of large Jack-O-Lanterns were blocking the path. They were crowded on top of each other so high they rose above the corn maze.

“Well, we’re trapped," I said. "What do we do now?”

Gerrard shoved some corn stalks aside and said, “I think we can just shove these corn stocks apart and walk right through these rows until we get to the outside.” Gerrard started forward and I followed. After going through about 15 walls of corn we were on the outside of the corn maze again. To our surprise it was still daylight out. The sun had not set after all. We had only been in the corn maze for about 20 minutes.
Gerrard and I went up to porch where the farmer was still standing. “We didn’t find anything,” I reported to the farmer. “Nice special effects though with the fake bloody body parts and all the Jack-O-Lanterns.”

“Body parts? Jack-O-Lanterns?” said Mr. Van Wooten with a surprised look on his face. “There aren’t any bloody body parts or Jack-O-Lanterns in the corn maze. All we have are teakee torches. We don’t even grow Jack-O-Lanterns anymore.”
“Then where did the Jack-O-Lanterns come from?” I asked.
“Well boys,” Mr. Wooten began, “years ago we used to grow pumpkins that could one day be carved into Jack-O-Lanterns. We sold pumpkins to people that came out here and we even supplied many of the grocery stores in the area. Then one day, my wife went crazy. She started smashing pumpkins with a baseball bat. She destroyed them. She destroyed the entire crop and over there where the corn maze is today is where we buried them all. That is our pumpkin cemetery. The rotting dead pumpkins have been good for the soil. That’s why we can raise such tall thick corn there for our corn maze. “

“What about the old lady we met on the way into the maze?” I asked.

“Well, there isn’t any old lady here on this farm. My mom and dad are in Florida and my grandma moved down state to take care of her grandparents. “

“Wow,” I exclaimed. “When we went in there was this really ugly, gnarly, wrinkled up old hag that warned us that we might not make it out. She was really horrible looking. Her skin was gray colored like she was a corpse and she was nearly bald. She must have been a hundred years old. She was a real ugly old witch.”

“There’s nobody around here that looks like that son. I’ve never seen anybody as horrible looking as you just described. Well, it seems we have some more mysteries. It‘s too bad you didn’t find out what happened to all those people. One good thing that happened is that while you boys were in the maze a local chop shop called and they‘re will to buy all these vehicles for $500.00 a piece. I guess I don‘t care if the owners are missing. I’ll do o.k.”

“I guess we’d better get going,” I said. Then, just as Gerrard and I turned around to leave, the ugly old witch was coming up behind us. Gerrard and I looked around for a place to run. “That’s the old witch!” I yelled. I looked up at the farmer and said, “That’s the one I was telling you about.”

“Why that’s not an old witch,” he said angrily, “That’s my wife!

I spent the next day nursing my black eye with a piece of steak over it. My swollen lower lip was not quite as big as it was the night before. My ribs were soar but I didn’t believe any of them were broken. What kind of makes me mad is that my friend Gerrard just stood there laughing his head off along with farmer Van Wooten as Mrs. Van Wooten beat the heck out of me with her baseball bat. Now I know how those pumpkins must of felt and why they wanted revenge so badly.

Saturday, December 20, 2014

THE HAUNTED CABIN

By Carrie, Sherri and Gerrard
Report by Carrie Blackstar
Associate Reporters
Humor News Nuts Online 

A few weeks ago when the weather started turning cool I along with my sister and Gerrard went out to a cabin in the woods that someone in town said was haunted. This anonymous lady said that she had inherited 80 acres with a small pond and cabin on the property. The owner told us that she and her family (husband, son and dog Jake) had only stayed one weekend in the cabin in the past four years. She said that when they wanted to use the property they would take along tents because they could not get any sleep inside the cabin. It seems that all sorts of strange noises happen within, under and outside of the place. She asked me and my sister to investigate since we were such fine investigative reporters.

We decided we needed to bring backup with us in case things got out of hand and whatever was scarring the owner and her family, became violent. Everyone we knew was busy except Gerrard. My sister Carrie did not want me to ask Gerrard to go with us because Gerrard has a thing for Carrie. Carrie can’t stand him. Gerrard raises rats to sell in his mother’s basement. That makes him sound really creepy but, if you knew Gerrard at all you would know that he would be creepy even if he did not raise rats in his mother’s basement. But, he’s big and scary looking. He might just frighten a ghost away. We figured that if Gerrard could not scare the ghost away well, he moves a lot slower than my sister or I so we thought we would just out run him and leave him behind to handle the attacking poltergeist. While he dealt with the ghost Carrie and I planed to run out to the Bronco and head straight back to town.

The cabin was about 30 by 30 feet with a loft above and a half basement under it. The cabin was made out of logs with a door and a window in the front and one window upstairs in the loft. It was starting to get dark when we arrived but, I could tell a lot of the outside logs were starting to rot. The door wasn’t locked so we walked right in. The bottom level of the cabin had a main room consisting of a kitchen and living room along with two bedrooms and a bathroom each leading off from the main room. There was a pull down stairway on one side of the main room opposite the kitchen area. There was no TV but there was a kitchen table, coach and, a couple of lounge chairs. Overall, the cabin was as filthy inside as the logs were rotten on the outside. It had a dank smell to it like wet laundry that you’ve left sitting in a hamper for a month or two. Carrie and I each sat down on a lounge chair while Gerrard sat on the coach with his arm outstretched like one of us should sit next to the creep. The furniture was a brown color and made out of fake leather. It was so sticky that it made me cringe.

We brought with us flashlights, a battery operated lantern, a video camera and a digital recorder. In addition we brought along a cell phone. Gerrard brought along some refrigerator magnets because he believed that if a ghost walks by a magnet then the magnets would be attracted to the ghost and stick to him. Gerrard said that the movement of the magnets would indicate exactly where the ghost was located. Gerrard’s magnet theory did not make any sense to me so I said “Whatever Gerrard.” Gerrard had volunteered to bring snacks and he certainly did do just that. He had a large ice chest full of candy and small bags of corn chips and potato chips. I figure there must have been at least 300,000 calories in that ice chest.

We must have been sitting for all of two minutes before Gerrard took his ice chest full of snacks over to the kitchen table and dumped the contents of the ice chest all over the table's top. Gerrard grabbed a candy bar, ripped off the wrapper and shoved it in his mouth. He chewed on it once and swallowed it. He then opened up a sack of chips. “Do you ladies want any of this stuff?” he asked while he crunched on a mouthful of chips. A few pieces of chewed chips fell out of his mouth and onto the floor.  It was disgusting. 

“No thanks,” Carrie and I shouted back to him simultaneously. Carrie and I looked at each other and we both new that even if nothing happened, this was going to be a really long night. We should have left Gerrard home and just borrowed the dog from our friend Misty Merkel. The dog would not have been quite so gross when he was eating.

Nothing happened until almost midnight. Carrie had dozed off but, Gerrard had continued eating all that time. There were candy bar wrappers and empty chip bags all over the table and floor surrounding Gerrard. Then, I heard footsteps upstairs in the loft. The footsteps were steady and sounded like someone was pacing back and forth. I looked over to Gerrard but, he was still busily smacking away and was oblivious to anything except for his food. I looked over to my sister and said “Carrie, Carrie, wake up.”

Carrie roused herself and was immediately startled by the footsteps upstairs. Gerrard was still fully focused on his goodies. I yelled to Gerrard, “Gerrard get over here. Get over here right now.”Gerrard reluctantly set down the bag of chips he was working on and came over to where Carrie and I were sitting. “Listen.” I said. The pacing continued. “We’ve got to go upstairs,” I said. I got up and grabbed a flashlight. I then walked over to the stairs and pulled the string that hung down from the ceiling. The stairs folded down and landejust in front of my feet. “Come on you guys!” I said. “You’ve got to follow me to see what’s up there.”

I turned on my flashlight and slowly climbed up the ladder into the loft with Carrie and Gerrard close behind. There were just two small bedrooms with one bedroom at each end. The loft itself had a really low ceiling because the roof was not peaked that much. You could only stand up straight if you walked precisely down the middle of the loft. Gerrard was taller than Carrie or me so he constantly went “Ouch,” as he banged his head on the ceiling.

The remarkable thing was that the pacing had stopped. We looked all over and there was no sign of anyone or anything. Just as we finished our search of the upstairs, we suddenly heard a loud knocking at the door downstairs. We all three quickly scurried down from the loft hoping to find a familiar face knocking at the front door. But, when we opened the door there was no one there. I shined my flashlight out into the darkness and saw no one there. I closed the door and bolted it. Then we heard a faint crying from down in the basement.

It was faint but, it was definitely someone crying or whimpering. We searched around on the floor and soon found a door in the floor which when opened revealed a staircase that led down into the basement. The whimpering got suddenly louder when the basement door was opened. I again led the way followed by my sister and Gerrard brought up the rear. No sooner had my foot hit the basement floor than the crying stopped. We searched the little half basement and found nothing.

No sooner had we all gotten back to the ground floor and closed the door to the basement when we heard a very distinct man’s voice say “Get out of here!” We all froze in our steps. None of us said a thing. Then, amazingly the refrigerator magnets Gerrard had brought along flew up into the air and began to move around. They moved in front of the window where we could see the outline of a big, burly man dressed like a lumberjack. His hands were around a woman’s neck. She cried out to us for help but, there was nothing we could do. Her life had ended a long time ago. We decided to get the heck out of there. We grabbed our equipment and ran outside to the Bronco. All three of us climbed into the Bronco and sped off for town.

The next day I informed the owner that she should burn the cabin down. It was truly a haunted site. She said she would have the place tore down and would build a cabin on the other side of the property. Gerrard kept bugging me to go back with him to the cabin to retrieve his snacks. He said he left behind at least two dozen candy bars and half dozen bags of chips. I told him I was never going back to that site and besides, it wouldn’t hurt him to lay off a few calories from time to time. I told him my sister Carrie would never go out with him unless he gets into shape. He has not spoken to me since then.

Friday, May 23, 2014

SPOOKY DUKEY THE DEMON DOG

THE DEMON DOG ON DOOGAN AVENUE
By Gerrard
Associate Writer For Humor News Nuts

Just down the street from my ma’s house lives this guy I went to school with. His name is Von Frogface. I don’t remember his real name since we started calling him Von Frogface in the second grade when his head flattened out like a frog. There wasn’t any accident or anything like that. He just looks like his old man. Anyway, the other day Von Frogface hunted me down and insisted that I come by his place and help him get rid of this dog. I said “Can’t you call a dog catcher?”

“No”, he replied. “It’s a dead hound dog and I need you to help me exorcise its ghost. I heard that you were one of those ghost scene adventurers. I figured you’d know what to do. You were always the smartest kid I knew in school. You learned how to read and write while you were still in elementary school. That makes you some kind of genius. You got to help me!”

“Alright,” I said, “Tell me about the haunting.”

Von Frogface stood there thinking for several moments. You could always tell when he was thinking because his big olive green eyes would begin to go around and around in his head. Both eyes would spin counterclockwise like he was rewinding a video tape.

Von Frogface began by telling me that there was a cement memorial marker for a dog named Dukey which was dated October 31, 1927. Von did not know if that was the date of death or birth date of the animal. A few weeks ago Von noticed that dirt infront of the stone had been dug up and that there was a large hole left behind. Von did not see anything in the whole so he filled it in so he could run his lawn mower over it. The grass in his yard was getting long and needed to be cut.

Von said that later that evening while he was lying in his bed, a hideous howling came from his yard. Von looked out to see if his cocker spaniel dog named Mimi was having a problem. The dog was tied up to its dog coop and was inside of it. Von decided to go down to check out Mimi and found the poor dog trembling inside the dog house. Mimi was unwilling to come out even when Von called to the shaking creature. Then, Von heard a vicious growl from behind him so Von turned around and was confronted by a large black hound with long fangs and eyes as red as cinders in a wood stove. As the dog panted clouds of smoke would burst out of his mouth with every breath.

Von backed up slowly away from the hound until he reached the screen door on the back porch. Von slowly opened the door and moved inside and locked the door behind him. Von continued backing up until he reached the door that led from the porch into the kitchen. Just as Von opened that door and proceeded inside the great black monster hound plunged through the screen door and made a dash for Von. Von made it into the kitchen and heard the hell hound clawing at the door just as the door slammed shut. Von trembled in fear and was wet with sweat as he listened to the claws on the other side of the door slowly ripping the wood away. Von thought for sure he was going to die. Then, suddenly the clawing stopped but, not before Von had dashed upstairs to his bedroom and hid himself under his blankets.

The next day Von found much of his kitchen door had been ripped to pieces. Poor Mimi was still trembling inside her dog house. There was no sign of the large black hound with the fiery eyes and demonic disposition. Every night since that night the monster hound revisited Vons’s backyard scarring both Von and his little dog Mimi. Finally, VonFrogface could no longer take the harassment of the supernatural beast. That’s when Von decided to call upon the Ghost Scene Investigators of Traverse City Michigan.

Von and I met at his house just before sundown. The house was located just across the highway from Lake Michigan. There was a nice view of Grand Traverse Bay from Vons’s front yard and you could also see Lake Michigan from Vons’s backyard patio. I made arrangements for a Priest named Father Murphy Brown, to show up just as the sun was going down. Von and I went to school with Father Brown. His mom was a fan of Candice Bergen so she named her son Murphy Brown after the comedy show of the same name.

Father Murphy Brown did not really believe that Von had a demon dog chasing around his neighborhood but, Father Brown agreed he would bless the home and bring along some holy water to help protect us from the demon. After the home was blessed, Father Brown, Von and I sat down in white resin chairs in Vons’s backyard. Von had a fire going in the metal outdoor fireplace. Von provided Father Brown and me with marshmallows and long metal forks to roast the marshmallows. After our marshmallows were roasted Von gave us each a Hershey chocolate bar and two gram crackers each so we could make s’mores.

The s’mores were very good. Von was getting ready to go get some milk to wash down the s’mores when suddenly, an icy wind blew off of Lake Michigan and the fire completely died out. Then a black, growling dog with fiery red eyes appeared directly behind the fire pit. He was so close you could smell the sulfur on his breath. The evil hound was too close for all of us to get away but, since Father Brown was the closest to the hound and I was the furthest away, I decided to take and chance the hound would not catch any of us so I made a dash for the backdoor. I and Von made it through the back door and into the house unscathed by our boyhood buddy, Father Brown did not fair as well.
It seems that as Father Brown jumped up to run into the house behind us the hound nailed the Priest on the backside. The only thing that saved Father Brown was that in the back pocket of his trousers he had a vile of holy water and when the hound from hell bit down on the Fathers’ backside the vile broke open and scorched the mouth of the evil dog which sent the thing yowling and running away. Father Brown suffered nothing more than a ripped pair of trousers. He was a little peeved that Von and I choose to run away and leave him to the jaws of the devil beast. “You guys haven’t changed at all since we were kids. You left me to face that devil dog just like you ran off and left me to fend for myself against Mrs. Reads’ Doberman when we were twelve years old. I ended up with 8 stitches and a scar for life from that incident. Thanks for the s’mores but, I don’t think I’ll be back. You guys can handle this devil dog by yourselves.” Then Father Brown went home.

Von and I were laughing over the Doberman incident as Father Brown drove away. We also got a laugh remembering the day we took the chain off his bicycle and the time we peanut buttered the pages of his algebra book together. Those were great times. It was a good thing that little brownie grew up to be a priest and not a disgruntled postal worker.

The next evening it was just up to Von and me to face down Spooky Dukey. That was the nickname everyone in the neighborhood was now calling the demon dog from Hades. Personally, I thought that “Spooky Dukey” was a silly name from which you could not correctly infer the seriousness of the situation. This was a resurrected demon dog looking for revenge. Of course while Von, Father Brown and I were putting our lives on the line the people in the neighborhood were watching out their windows from the safety of their homes. What was deadly serious to our team of investigators appeared comedic to the neighbors. Undoubtedly, the neighbors roared with laughter when they saw our party attacked and the bottom ripped out of poor Father Browns’ britches. Well, I was tired of being a laughing stock while being chased down by a demon dog. I told Von we had to bring the investigation to a conclusion and get that toothy beastie back into the grave.
“We are going to get rid of Spooky Dukey tonight,” I told Von. “Tonight the dead shall no longer walk amongst us. We just need to figure out what to do. Von, go over with me again the story of what happened that got Spooky Dukey so riled up that he came back to life as a demon? ” Make sure that you don’t leave out any details.

“Well,” began Von, “It all started when I noticed that someone had dug up Dukeys’ grave. The demon started running around the neighborhood and was chasing after me. I finally went and got you to help get rid of the monster.”

Suddenly, everything became clear to me. I told Von that “all we have to do is find the bones of old Dukey and burry them back into his grave. The spirit should then rest in peace or, in heaven or, hell I really don’t care as long as the demon is gone.” I had Von dig a hole in the grave where the original hole had been. I then noticed that Vons’s dog Mimi was chewing on something. Upon a closer look I found that the little dog was gnawing on a large bone. “Von, did you give your dog a bone to much on tonight?” I asked.

“No, I never give Mimi any bones since she almost choked on one a couple of years ago. Some stupid neighbor must have tossed Mimi a bone.”

I knelt down and looked inside of Mimi’s’ coop and there was a whole pile of bones in there, including the skull of a dog. “I think I found the remains of Spooky Dukey,” I said. “Mimi must have dug them all up and squirreled them away in her dog coop. We need to bury these bones and bury them fast. The sun has gone down and an icy wind just blew in from Lake Michigan again. Spooky Dukey is on his way”

Sure enough, as I looked up from the dog coop I saw about two blocks away, the dark dog with the red eyes running at full speed up the road and straight for us. I grabbed up all the bones in the coop and threw them in the open grave of Spooky Dukey. I then had to fight with Mimi for the last bone. I finally pulled the bone free from the snarling Mimi and she bit me hard on the ankle. I shook the little dog off and tossed the remaining bone in the grave. I looked back and saw that Spooky Dukey had his jaws wide open with his huge fangs dripping with saliva, his dead soul starving for our flesh. Just as the demonic creature leaped in the air for my trembling body Von threw a shovel of dirt on top of the bones and the vicious hell hound disappeared in mid air. I was still cringing when I realized that I was safe. My mangled flesh and bones were not being ripped apart by the resurrected dog demon named Spooky Dukey.

The next day we finished filling in the grave using concrete so that neither Mimi nor anyone else could disturb the bones of poor Dukey. Von Frogface thanked me for all my help and asked me how he could repay me. I told him he could start by giving me that glass milk I never got and maybe he could get me a couple more of those delicious s’mores.