Thursday, October 31, 2013

Halloween “Horror” Night & “A Vampire Kiss” Adult Drink!

When I was a young teen I would tell my younger brother Chris, spooky stories! I took him to see his first scary movie called, “The Night Of The Living Dead”! I would thrive on watching horror movies, seeing blood, and terror on TV. Then I would run into the living room, or the kitchen where ever my parents were and be so glad that I was not home alone, as these shows really scared me to death! I bet you never knew that I really enjoyed these movies, but I scared myself at the same time! As I grew up these movies scared me so I never watch them again until …..I married my husband. Then things turned around totally! 
Top photo is Gas Station,
Middle photo, Cemetery,
Bottom photo, the original house.

My husband is a huge horror fan! I mean BIG! He enjoys many types of movies, and music, but his ultimate favorite is the “Horror Genre”. Before we married his apartment was filled with memorabilia of these movies. There were posters, photos, props, action figures, and oh I forgot, a replica of “Chucky”. The posters were in frames on the walls, some were from the USA and others were foreign from Germany, Italy, and I think even a Danish one. Many had authentic signatures of the cast on them. As I began to understand him more, he started showing me his horror DVD collection of movies. They were really scary! I still do not know how I watched these movies. After we got married there were many times that we went to horror conventions. We traveled to Ohio, New York City, and Pennsylvania for some of them. Then one day my husband received an email from a fellow horror fan and was told that his favorite movie of all time was having a reunion in Texas, and we had to go. His favorite of all times is “The Texas Chainsaw Massacre” (the original:1974)  Are you getting the picture now….yes, we went to Texas to see the cast reunion. Now we just didn’t go to the convention, and meet the cast, we had to follow the path of how they made the movie! We flew in to Austin, Texas, and rented a car. I was the navigator with a map, and we started to follow the path of this movie. The next part of this story was written by Rick, my husband as we got to meet most of the cast of “The Chainsaw Massacre.“ or as he calls it for short TCM. (Those of you that have seen this movie will know who we are talking about, sorry if you do not know the cast of the movie, now you have to watch it) This is how my nightmare begins!
Bottom photo is myself,
 Gunner Hansen, and Rick

September 22, 2000...Austin, Texas...Our first stop is the famous cemetery where the opening shots of TCM were filmed. It's pretty impressive to see in person. The huge column where the hitch-hiker poses the corpse in front of the tombstone is awesome! Dottie took all the photos and also a video of the whole time in Texas. She was a real trooper. Next we went to see Allen Danziger. (He played Jerry, the van driver) He seemed amazed that TCM has developed such a following over the years! He happily signed ALL of my TCM memorabilia (I have tons), even though he was extremely busy. All I can say is he's really a great guy! He also acquired some fantastic pieces from TCM that were framed and hanging in his office. Now it was time to head to Houston for the reunion. It's a good 3 hour drive, and we still had to find our hotel room before the show. On the way there we found the famous gas station-BBQ from the movie. Now that was really IMPRESSIVE!! It still looks like it did in TCM except a couple small sheds were added next to it. Dottie (my wife) got all nervous as we approached it! HA!! The people that owned it now were very nice and even took me to the back room where all the action took place between Sally and the Cook. Anyone who visits Texas must go see that place! Finally made it to Houston and arrived at the Fear Factory about 7:15 p.m. There were lots of people young and old, mingling around waiting for the cast to appear. There was a radio station set up outside on the street (which was blocked off), and they were announcing to come down and meet the cast! 
Bottom photo is the 4 cast
members with Rick on the left.

Finally, my excitement peaked as the four members of the greatest horror movie ever, arrived!! There was a tent set-up with tables, and they had many photos for sale. Everyone had to stand in line, and they'd let about 5 or 6 people at a time in to greet the cast. They are all such cool people! I'm proud to say Gunnar Hansen (Leatherface) remembered us from our meeting last year! And Marilyn Burns also knew who I was from corresponding with her! Jim Siedow (the Cook) was very friendly, and he was amazed at all the foreign posters I have that he's never seen. He told me to keep in touch with him and believe me, I will!! Ed Neal (the Hitch-hiker) was impressed that I had all ORIGINAL memorabilia and no reprints. We also discussed the possibity of purchasing some props from him from the TCM movie! He gave me his agent’s card to keep in touch. He's a real character, many times doing his best hitch-hiker impressions from the movie. Marilyn (the girl that was screaming in the movie) was a sweetheart, and she was also in awe of all the TCM things I had that she had never seen before. And of course Leatherface himself, Gunnar Hansen, was so nice, so friendly and witty! Before we left he GAVE me a sketch of himself signed by the artist. It was also a limited edition and inscribed it with, "To Rick Balin, one of the biggest Chainsaw fans in the world and one of the best!!.” I now have that framed and hanging on my wall! It was a memory I will never forget!

Thank you for stopping by on this spooky day! I hope you all have a fun, safe, and a Happy Halloween!! My recipe this week is an adult drink as you enjoy your spooky movie! 

"Vampire Kiss"
Serves: 1

2 parts passion fruit-flavored rum
1 part tonic water
Splash of cranberry juice
Black cherry, for garnish

Shake all ingredients with ice. 
Strain into a cocktail glass and garnish with a black cherry

Please drink responsibly and be safe on this fun night!

Till Next Time…………..

Copyright © 2013 “Family Plus Food Equals Love” All Rights Reserved


  1. Hello Dottie!
    I enjoyed reading your "horror" stories!This is a spooky night and I wonder what are the celebrations like where you are. Halloween is getting popular in Italy too but never as big as in America.
    THank you for sharing this great cocktail. I love the "bloody" look of it!
    Happy Halloween!

  2. Dear Alida,
    Thanks for stopping by. Glad you enjoyed my spooky story. My son is 38 now, so we do not go trick or treating, but we would go to the houses on the block and treat for candy when he was young. Dressed up in a costume, is another way we would celebrate and the kids would love that. I remember having Halloween parties for the children, and we always had games, bobbing for apples, candy, and a costume contest. The next day is All Saints Day and then the following day is All Souls Day. Being Catholic these days were very important, and we would go to mass. That is what we do here on Long Island, NY.
    Glad that you liked the cocktail. I thought that it would be fun, please it is "bloody" delicious! Happy Halloween! Enjoy! Blessings Dottie :)

  3. Hi Dottie ,
    I loved this post and what a wonderful time and exciting time that was to meet the cast of "The Texas Chainsaw Massacre". My husband and I saw the movie , or should I say , he saw the movie , I had my hands over my eyes most of the time :D. We will have to take that trip when my kids get out for springbreak , it's not far as we say here as the 'Crows' flies :D , Happy Halloween dear Dottie and thanks for sharing :)

  4. Dear Nee,

    You would not think that the cast was extremely nice. They are very friendly. After seeing the movie, like you with my hands over my eyes at times, it was interesting to see not only the cast, but all the other parts of the movie. My husband always says that it really was not that bloody, but it was more of a thriller, and that is what scares you even more. It is the number one cult movie going!

    Thanks and Happy Halloween to you as well. Blessings, Dottie :)

  5. Confession. I detest Halloween. It's true Dottie. It has never been a favorite of mine even as a child I didn't like it. Scary movies are right up there with Halloween.

    I do think it was cool to be able to meet the cast though. I would imagine it gives you a different perspective on their personalities.

    We didn't have any trick or treater today, not one! Marion bought 7 bags of Reese's oh how I hope I don't eat them all. I may just "toss" them in the freezer for safe keeping:)

    Thanks for sharing, Dottie. I wouldn't mind a roast with that Vampire Kiss though. It sounds mighty good this time of night especially since the wind is howling and the rain is falling in buckets!

  6. Hi Louise,

    I understand about your feelings on Halloween. It was fun when the kids were young, but it really is not my thing. I do like to decorate for fall, with pumpkins, leaves, etc. Yes, I really do not like the scary movies, I usually cover my eyes. But as you said meeting the cast of the movie was very cool. Also can't believe how friendly they were. Nothing like the way they were in the movie.
    We d not get any kids here, as this is a development for over 50. Marion must love Reese's. Studies have shown that what you buy for the kids are really what you like. Putting them in the freezer sounds like a great idea, then you are not tempted.
    Yes, the Vampire Kiss would be a good way to end the evening. It is raining in buckets where you are maybe that is why you didn't have any kids come. Was rainy here as well, but not that bad.
    Now I take away the fall decorations and my time of year is here, Christmas. I start decorating for Christmas, this way I can enjoy the season. By the time you take everything out of storage, it is time to put it all away. This way I get to have it out a little longer.
    Thanks for reading and stopping by, Blessings for a good weekend, Dottie :)

  7. Dear Dottie, I would not and could not sit through those movies. I guess it is like the song says, "The Things We Do For Love".
    The "Vampire Kiss" sounds delish.
    Blessings dear, Catherine xo

  8. I too like to read and see horror movies...

  9. Hi Weekend-Windup,

    Thank you for reading and enjoying my blog. Yes, the horror genre has grown, and it is fun to watch these type of movies if that is your thing. I find that people either love them or hate them...your choice. Please do come back and visit again! Many more stories and recipes coming especially with the holidays on the way..

    Have a good day! Dottie