A lot of people get quite creative when the holidays roll around, and with Halloween right around the corner, some enthusiasts have started focusing on the best way to share a bit of holiday spirit with everyone around them. And in most cases, this is a GOOD thing.
After all, everybody enjoys when their Halloween decorations evoke a positive reaction from the rest of the neighborhood, giving the creator a sense of pride in the effort put forth into bringing their vision for the season alive. However, when the spooky display looks a little bit TOO realistic, some unexpected problems can result.
Such is the case with Becky Muhs of West Fargo, North Dakota when she got into the holiday spirit a little bit early. In fact, a few of her neighbors had such a visceral reaction to what they saw, it prompted them to contact the police out of fear for the well-being of the house’s occupants.
Maybe it was the fact that it was still September with the remnants of summer still hanging in the air, that caused the totally unexpected reaction she got when her neighbors got a look at her Halloween decorations. But Muhs, who always takes pride in the realistic nature of her displays, might have gone a bit too far this year.
And once you see the display, you'll have to admit it's pretty convincing!
The spectacle that caused the real-life panic in the neighborhood was the one she created that looks as though someone on the inside of the house had scrawled the words, "HELP ME!" in what looks an awful lot like blood!!
One look at the message caused neighbors to "frantically attempt to reach her." When they were unsuccessful, their panic boiled over. (Muhs was not home at the time.)
According to Fox News, "Unfortunately, Muhs wasn’t home to allay anyone’s fears, as she and her husband — whose anniversary falls on Halloween, too — were out celebrating an early birthday dinner."
One neighbor, Jay Thomas, defended his decision to call in the authorities., dong so only after trying, unsuccessfully, to reach Muhs by cell phone. (Muhs responded 15 minutes later to let Thomas know she and her hubby were okay.)
"I look across the street and I see in my neighbor's window, the sign that says ‘Help Me,’" said WDAY radio host Jay Thomas, who just happens to live nearby. "That window has always had the curtains drawn. So I'm like, 'What's going on in here?'"
As news of the North Dakota incident spread, it brought to mind a similar misunderstanding with Halloween decorating just last year when a Tennessee homeowner attracted a lot of attention for a VERY realistic display that looked like a decapitated man bleeding out on their driveway.
When the Greene County, Tennessee Sheriff's Department had completed their investigation into the startling display, they issued a public service announcement on Facebook to all residents in an attempt to prevent further panic:
"ATTENTION EVERYONE!!! For those of you driving on Chuckey Pike in Greene County: THIS IS A HALLOWEEN DECORATION! Do NOT call 911 reporting a dead body. Instead, congratulate the homeowner on a great display."
When all was said and done, Muhs was philosophical about the whole ordeal. “It's any Halloween lover’s dream come true to get that kind of reaction to decorations,” she tells Fox News. “And honestly it's very reassuring to know [that] we have such good neighbors looking out for us … even if it might have made him look a little silly, it was all in good fun.”