October and Halloween are upon us once again and as a zero-calorie trick-or treat please enjoy this quirky list of all things creepy, crawly, bizarre and macabre.
Did you know…..
When you are outside, you are usually within six feet of a spider! Worldwide, there are 30,000 species of these eight-legged creepy-crawlies.
In Berlin, Germany there is a hotel where you can sleep in a coffin. Unlike the Hotel California, you are allowed to leave in the morning.
Horned lizards can shoot blood out of their eyes. When threatened, they first blow themselves up to twice their size and then, if they still feel threatened, they shoot blood from their eyes up to distances of three feet.
In New Zealand, two glass vials that looked empty sold for about $2000. Why? Inside the vials were supposedly ghosts.
Black cats are good luck in England and are given as wedding presents in Japan.
There really are people who consider themselves vampires – and they really do dress in black, roam the nightscape and drink human blood.
Odontophobia is the fear of teeth.
Some medical historians have connected the dots between the concept of vampires with rabies outbreaks. People suffering from rabies are often sensitive to light and they are inclined to bite other people.
In the past when medicine was not as advanced as it is today, many people were actually buried alive. During the plague in 17th century Europe, for example, historical records indicate at least 149 people presumed dead were buried alive.
The fear of being buried alive is called taphephobia. (Is anyone not taphephobic?)
These Halloweenish-sounding towns really exist:
Spiderweb, South Carolina
Bat Cave, North Carolina
Scary, West Virginia
Dead Man’s Crossing, Indiana
Black Cat, Arkansas
Bloody Corners, Ohio
Jumping spiders skip web-spinning and instead use their eight eyes to track their next meal and then they leap – up to 50 times their own body length – to capture their unsuspecting prey.
Some lizards have green blood.
Spiders cannot chew. Instead spiders liquify the inside of their prey with a chemical they produce and then suck up the juices.
Superstition about the number 13 still runs high in the United States. Many hotels do not have a 13th floor (well, they do, but they call it floor 14) because so many people refuse to stay on this floor. Flying on Friday the 13th or taking a thirteenth row seat on a train or airplane is considered a big “no, no” by many people who truly fear this number.
Traditionally, in Scandinavia when a child lost a tooth it was burned. They thought that if a witch found it, the witch could hex the child.
Apparently, there are insurance companies, such as reputable Lloyd’s of London, that will sell policies to insure individuals that happen to morph into a werewolf or a vampire. Apparently, hundreds of people have purchased such coverage. In America, would turning into a werewolf be considered a pre-existing condition?
In 2002, the 500-year old Royal Falcon Hotel in England was inclined to purchase insurance that would cover any incidents that lead to death or disability from ghosts and/or other parapsychological phenomenon. According to BBC news, the Royal Falcon pays $768 a year for the nearly $1.5 million in coverage.
A phobia of Halloween is called Samhainphobia. Are you Samhainphobic? If you are I apologize for all of these unnerving spooky and creepy factoids! Sweet dreams….