Thursday, April 17, 2014

Bob Dunning: Dr. Bob answers your Halloween queries


From page A2 | October 30, 2013 | Leave Comment

* Editor’s note: Due to overwhelming reader response and personal requests from all five members of the Davis City Council, the Enterprise has again called on the services of Dr. Bob, a board-certified psychiatrist with a Halloween-specific practice in West Davis. While some of Dr. Bob’s timeless advice to Davis parents and children has appeared in this space previously, it is continuously updated to deal with our changing and challenging times.

Asks Sally on the Bird Streets: Dear Dr. Bob — There’s a scary bill that arrived in my mailbox just in time for Halloween. It’s truly terrifying. I’ve been out of town on sabbatical for the past 18 months and haven’t followed what’s going on. What can I do to make this monster go away?

Sally — That’s your new-and-improved, not to mention new-and-inflated, city services bill. Yep, you’re paying more for everything, from water to garbage to 40-ounce bottles of Pabst Blue Ribbon. But isn’t it nice that you’re being billed monthly, so you can “budget” better. That’ll teach you to leave town.

Asks Wendell in Willowbank: Dear Dr. Bob — Right now there’s a gigantic mess all over my front porch. I can’t tell if it’s dead of alive. It’ moving very slowly, heaving and sighing as if in the death throes. Should I call animal control or what?

Wendell — That mess you describe is actually a bunch of Davis teenagers dressed up as the Affordable Care Act, the scariest costume of the season. Just throw a bunch of money at it and see if that helps. And repeat after me: “If you like your doctor, you keep your doctor.”

Asks Peter on Parkside: Dear Dr. Bob — There’s a guy at the door wearing a hockey mask and carrying a chain saw. I’m shaking in my slippers.

Peter — That’s Johnny Appleseed’s evil twin, Johnny Bad Seed. He’s in charge of getting rid of the trees at Cannery Park. Just put some freshly gathered acorns in his treat sack and ask him to plant them as he goes.

Asks Teri in Village Homes: Dear Dr. Bob — There are 22 blue-and-white-clad warriors on my front porch. And they all have a Blue Devil on their helmets. I’m afraid to open the door for these trick-or-treaters. Who could they possibly be?

Teri — That would be the Davis High football team, Tom. They’ve been scaring all sorts of people this fall.

Asks Rachel on Oeste (rhymes with Ghosty): Dear Dr. Bob — A group of fifth-graders wanted me to put their Halloween candy in a plastic bag. I believe they are breaking the law and I offered to sell them paper bags for 10 cents each. I now have a handful of dimes I don’t know what to do with.

Rachel — Give them to the March of Dimes.

Asks Tess in Old East Davis: Dear Dr. Bob — My family and I moved to East Davis six months ago from Piedmont and I’d like to take the kids to a truly scary local attraction for Halloween. Any suggestions?

Tess — Just let them walk around your new neighborhood. That should be scary enough for any kid from Piedmont.

Asks Wendy on Haunt Way: “Dear Dr. Bob — There are two toothy guys on my porch dressed in scary politician costumes, and for some odd reason, there’s one folding chair between them. One keeps saying “It’s my seat” and the other keeps responding “No, it’s my seat.” What gives?

Wendy — It’s just Dan Wolk and Joe Krovoza, both running for the seat they feel is rightfully theirs. But those are not costumes they’re wearing. Believe it or not, that’s how they actually dress.

Asks Linda in College Park: Dear Dr. Bob — Can you get AIDS from bobbing for apples?

Linda — No, silly. That’s an old wives’ tale. The biggest concern with bobbing for apples is you might accidentally swallow Davis water.

Asks Sarah on Clara: Dear Dr. Bob — There is a giant 6-foot-long salmon flopping all over our front lawn. I’d like to barbecue it, but is Davis a catch-and-release town?

Sarah — No, no, no, no, no. That salmon is clearly suffering from a fluoride deficiency.

Asks Ashley on the Presidential Streets: Dear Dr. Bob — Who is the scariest character you can imagine coming to your doorstep trick-or-treating tonight?

Ashley — Alan Pryor. He wants to ban everything in town, including me.

Asks Mike in North Davis: Dear Dr. Bob — I’m trying to raise my kids to be aware of the world around them. I want their Halloween costumes to reflect a current person or idea. What should I do?

Mike — Give them an infrared smoke detector and a fire extinguisher and dress them as members of the Davis Fireplace Force. When a homeowner opens the door to hand them candy, have them rush into the house and dismantle the fireplace.

Asks Josh in Stonegate: Dear Dr. Bob — I want to dress as a member of the Sac State football team for Halloween, but my dad says that won’t scare anyone. What do you think?

Josh — Your dad’s right, but you should wear the uniform anyway. When you dress as a member of the Hornets, people will feel so sorry for you they’ll give you way more candy than the other kids get.

Asks Joe on Cherry: Dear Dr. Bob — We’re new to town and we know you have a lot of rules in Davis that we didn’t have back home in Minnesota. Is it illegal to trick-or-treat in Davis without a permit?

Joe — No, it’s not illegal to trick-or-treat in Davis. But it is illegal to move here from Minnesota without a permit.

Asks Jerry on the Private University Streets: Dear Dr. Bob — Is it true kids from Woodland trick-or-treat in Davis because they think they’ll get higher-quality treats?

Jerry — Yes.

Ask Tom on Tamarack: Dear Dr. Bob — I want a costume that will make the average Davisite shudder when they see me. Who should I dress as?

Tom — A Republican.

Asks Bill on East Eighth: Dear Dr. Bob — Is Halloween a religious holiday that may adversely affect public schoolchildren concerned with the separation of church and state? I don’t want my kids doing anything that will land them in the principal’s office.

Bill — No, Halloween is OK. The holiday was actually invented at the 1903 San Francisco World’s Fair when a hot dog salesman attempted to hollow out his frankfurters and fill them with chocolate to appeal to the children of the day. He was unable to sell them, however, and instead passed them out that night to trick-or-treaters, who took to calling them “hollow-weenies.” 

— Reach Dr. Bob with your questions at


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