Full disclosure, the world is a very different place now, and people are stupid-protective of their little crotch-goblins, so proceed with some caution.

There is nothing better than getting the opportunity to startle the kiddies during a national holiday. It's good, clean fun. Sure, it could be vengeance for all those times you sat through a meal a table away from a screaming kid because some people don't understand how rude it is to take tiny kids into nice restaurants or the movies, but we'll cover that at a later date.

If you had an epic childhood where people actually put effort into the neighborhood Halloween, you and I both know you've always wanted to set up an elaborate haunted house. The problem is time and money. Even if you had the time, you probably don't have the money. No worries, this is dirt cheap and super effective.

Since you're already staying home on Halloween, if you're in one of the few neighborhoods in town that trick-or-treat, put yourself in long pants, a sweatshirt, mask, a comfy chair and prepare for good times. You're the scarecrow. You have to sit still and wait for that perfect moment when the child has built enough confidence in themselves to grab a piece of candy. That's the idea, and it sounds stupid-simple, but it's the details that make or break this prank.

First off, find a place that still sells newspaper. Take it and bulk up the sleeves or one shoulder. Let it hang out of your sleeves and neck, bonus points for pant-legs too. That will at least give credibility to your role as the stuffed fake dude handing out candy.

Next, slouch. You need to look stuffed, but also stiff. You have to become the fake decoration.

Third, don't scare every kid. Let a few go by, especially if they're grouping close together. Let a few get their candy no-prob, then release the kracken when everyone seems at ease.

Is it mean? No. As long as you don't make it mean, it's just pure Halloween.

Bonus points if you get a few bags of dry ice and fog out the porch. Just don't be sitting in the fog. You'll probably die... which would be an epic Halloween decoration, but only if you started two weeks ago.

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