I Love Halloween

Hey, guys, what’s up! I hope you had a wonderful and safe night last night. I know mine was absolutely amazing. It started at 6am PST and I got back home at exactly midnight because, like in Cinderella, I will turn into a grumpy old man after that. It’s bedtime.

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This Halloween ended up being quite the rollercoaster. I learned a lot, too. I learned a lot about the work ethic that has been instilled in some of my students and also that of their parents. I learned about that some parents are really shitty examples for their kids and that’s why they’re really shitty kids in class. I learned why some kids lose their magic. It was a really interesting, eye-opening experience this year.

Let me tell you about my night.

I am a teacher in a small school and I have my own two-story building of which I am in charge. Due to the fact that I have this massive theatre to my disposal, I am able to put on a Haunted House. This was the second year and we had it set up where there were three ways to get through a section of the attraction: One tunnel where you had to crawl; One tunnel where it was so dark that you couldn’t see; One tunnel where you were blinded by flashing lights before getting on an elevator and going down. Then you either went through the Halloween room or the IT room, funneled through  a few more and then out past the chainsaw clown.

It was very simple and nicely signed so that there was no way to screw it up. Well, except the feckers who wanted to screw it up. The ones who didn’t want to play along. I gotta say, why did you come? Why come pay money to get into a Haunted House put on by the school if you were going to break stuff, hide, go off course, ruin scares for others, and generally screw around? It doesn’t make it fun and you become the person nobody wants to hangout with.

Think back on some of your favorite Halloween memories. For me, its times when everybody was playing along. If that’s willing to be scared at a Haunted House and enjoying that feeling of fear, it’s more fun when everybody suspends their disbelief and allows themselves to feel like they’re going to die! One little girl last night said to herself “Is this how I’m going to spend the last moments of my life?” and I couldn’t help but laugh out loud.

For me, that was the most annoying part of the night because it was ruining my fun, too. You’re in MY house and you paid me to scare you… LET ME SCARE YOU!

My next biggest issue was people with shitty work ethics. I had two kids leave during the show and one didn’t even tell me. I learned when I saw him walking away and confronted him. The other got too tired from sitting on the steps making creepy sounds. Seriously. Then 8 students who gave me slips saying they were coming didn’t show up, so I had far less actors, and therefore scares, to work with. I was livid. We pulled it off and had grown women crying, but it could have been so much better if these kids were true to their word. I’m going to call them out on it, too, because it ruined something with my name on it. We were on the front page of the paper, above the fold, and I feel like I gave a sub par performance. That’s my name. That’s my reputation as a teacher and a theatre professional.

 

The worst case of abandonment was when two sisters (twins) approached me the day before the Haunted House. They were supposed to be the girls from The Shining and had even purchased the outfits. One of the girls came up to me and told me that they weren’t going to be able to do the Haunted House because it was their last Halloween. What? I was so confused. Were they dying? No. Apparently their parents decided that they can’t go trick-or-treating once they’re teenagers and they were 12. 12! I didn’t stop collecting candy until I was, like, 15 and even after that I still went with my family and the other kids. It was Halloween where I could stay up late, eat candy, scare people, and be weird. Don’t take that away from your kids. It’s a special time and it keeps them being creative and allowing themselves to be, well, themselves for a night. Truly and purely. What’s more fun than emulating your favorite character, whomever that may be.

So, not only did these parents rob their children of scaring a bunch of people all night, they took actors away from me and taught them, simultaneously, that it’s okay to ditch out on commitments that you don’t want to do and that creativity is something to be grown out of. Wonderful parenting.

When we did get everything going, we were amazing. We were so good that we had grown men screaming, adult women crying, and children wondering if they were going to die. (“Is this how I’m going to spend the last moments of my life?”). Sometimes, we did too good, though, because the kids who thought they were going to be tough ended up getting scared. This made them upset and they would react to their fear with anger, striking my actors and throwing stuff at them. Sometimes they would tear apart walls in order to get around something they saw early and wanted to be cool. Sometimes they threw candy at us, though, so that was fine.

The thing is, sometimes the parents were with them and just allowed this, even leading it a few times. I was astonished that this is how they would behave in a place that wasn’t theirs. They didn’t make the set pieces or the costumes, but they were fine with destroying them. I had to throw a few people out. My actors, kids in this case, were my first priority and the guests were disrespecting them and the space they worked so hard to create. I can’t allow that.

Afterwards, we were all so tired, but so happy. We overcame issues with the sound, worked together as a team to scare the shit out of people, and had a ton of fun doing it. I couldn’t have asked for a better Halloween.

I hope that Samhain was everything you wanted and more, my Darling Devils. Now let’s start planning for next year, WE’RE LATE!

HS!

LH

It’s Time for School

Well, guys, it’s that time of year again. Parents are posting shitty pictures of their children with their backpacks on, the Pumpkin Spice goop is being dusted off, and the sky is grey with clouds, or smoke, I can’t tell anymore. This also means that I’ll be having to go back to work. As most of you guys may know, I’m a teacher and my school goes back on Wednesday.

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Photo by Pixabay 

To be honest, I’m not super excited to be back. Don’t get me wrong, I am super excited to see my students and get back into the theatre with them. I’ve been working really hard on my plan for the year and I think it’s going to be a really fun time.

I’m not excited to go back because I’m scared. I live in the United States, which has a long history of school shootings and mass shootings. Since the year 2000, there have been 194 school shootings (just school shootings, not mass shootings) which have caused hundreds of students and teachers to lose their lives long before their time.

Now, the name of this blog is called “I’m a Satanist and…” because, well, I’m a Satanist and I have shit to say, so it’s not really a secret who I am on a fundamental level. A large part of being a Satanist is loving life, what ever that means to you. In order to do that, one thing must be true: You have to be alive.

I value my life very much because I only have this one and I am going to enjoy it, damn it. At the same time, I’m a teacher and I have a very special place in my heart for the kids I teach and interact with on a daily basis. I would do anything in the world for them, which includes putting myself in a place where I might die. I hope I would make the right choice.

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Photo by Pixabay 

I’m scared to go back to work because I don’t want to be put in a place where I might have to make these choices. I don’t want to hear those kids screaming in either fear or pain because somebody decided to bring a gun into their space and kill them. I don’t want to die, either. I don’t want to be a name on the news because I died or had to be a hero.

I’m not a police officer, nor a firefighter, nor any other flavor of hero or first responder. I teach middle and high school drama. I want to teach the kids how to project and the right way to put a Gobo into a light. I don’t want to teach them how to hide from somebody who wants them dead.

I know there are people who say that guns aren’t the problem, but they’re also not part of the solution. I’m begging everybody out there to get up and make your voices heard. If you like this blog, get out and vote or march or call a representative or anything because you will be helping keep me and my students safe.

I’ll be back soon, my loves. Gotta go dye my hair some more.

HS!

LH

P.S. There was a shooting at a Florida school football game just last night.

I’m Pissed

So, I’m scoring along on Twitter today and I’m seeing the usual crap about Trump and some stuff about the Yanni vs Laurel thing (Fuck y’all I’m team Lauren) when all of a sudden I see an article about a teacher who decided it would be a good idea to drown two raccoons in front of his freaking students.

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Not these, but they looked like this.

YUP! You read that right! Let me give you the full story.

So this teacher, Dewie Brewton, who has been teaching at the school for 34 years, caught two raccoons in traps that had allegedly killed a few of the school’s chickens. So, after he had them trapped, he had students help him fill up a tub with water and assist him in holding the cages in the water as the animals fought to breathe, eventually succumbing to their fate.

This is unacceptable and I hope this teacher is fired as soon as possible. Let me explain a few things. My dad is a hunter and performs predator control where he will trap, hunt, kill, or relocate animals depending on what the situation is. Would he have killed the raccoons? Probably.

Here’s the difference: My Dad is not cruel. He doesn’t want these animals to suffer and is really hard on himself if he doesn’t give an animal a clean, quick death. Also, he doesn’t do It around students! Also, his damn job was to kill the animals who were causing harm to livestock or threatening communities.

Mr. Brewton’s job is to teach. I’m a teacher and I know that the job requires more teaching about life and the way the world works than actual math or science lessons. The teacher should have shown the students that animals are only doing what they are doing to survive. He should have showed them how wild they are and how we have to have compassion for animals.

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Unholy FUCK they’re cute. 

Here’s what I would have done. I would have brought the students out to see the animals. We would have spoken about what they look like, why they would kill the chickens, what they are acting like, and what they might be doing if they weren’t hanging out with us. Then I would have loaded them up into my car and taken them to a wooded area and set them free.

Maybe that’s just because I’m a Satanist and I value life for all. Maybe it’s because I’m a sucker for those Trash Ninjas. Who knows?

I’ll be posting a video later, my Lovely Devils. Stay tuned.

HS!

LH

I’m A Teacher

I’ve always wanted to be a teacher since I was in High School. I always dreamed of being the cool teacher who students like to hang out with during lunch. I thought I was going to be an English Teacher one day, since my BA is in Creative Writing, and I may move into that field at some point.

It wasn’t until later, while I was attending Skagit Valley Community College, that I found out my love for theatre. While I was getting my BA at WWU, I also took theatre classes that focused on technical side of theatre, accumulating enough for almost a minor. Almost. Like, if I take one more class, I will have a theatre minor. Why didn’t I decide to stay in school one more quarter and just finish off that one credit? Well, because I got a job offer.

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My $22,000 piece of paper

It was last summer during the off-season at Western when I was working as a janitor. I was taking my last break, which was at 1:30 in the afternoon since I got to work at 5am, and I had a text from my mom to come down later for dinner. So, I did. That’s when I started speaking to my mom’s friend who works at the school. She started asking me if I wanted to be a drama teacher. I thought she was joking, so I said that yeah, one day, I would love to be a teacher. That when she looked at me really seriously and said

“No, now”.

And that was that! I went home and filled out my graduation papers, which they had to rush for me. Then I paid what I needed to pay, filled out my application and waited. And waited… Then I waited a while longer. Apparently, they liked to keep me waiting because I was about ready to give up. My stomach turned each day, wondering if I was going to get the job. So, I did what any rational Satanist would do. I performed a ritual.

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A photo from before our first ritual

I decided to do a compassion ritual because I was worried that they maybe had multiple people to decide from or were unsure if they wanted to hire me or not. I have to say, I did feel better afterwards because I felt as if I had finally done everything in my power to sway the outcome. Afterwards, I turned my energy to different things. I started looking at Masters programs and tried painting. I looked for other jobs, too, in case they decided to hire somebody else. Well, a few days later, I received a call. I was being asked to come in and interview! They ended up hiring me on the spot, which is good since school started the next Tuesday.

From then on, it’s been nothing but a dream. Yeah, there are some times when I get stressed and find myself wanting to bang my head against the wall, but I’m happy more often than not. They are all so smart and funny and I love each of them for who they are and I hope I’m still around to see them graduate.

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One of my Favs at the gun march (Used with permission)

When it comes to being a Satanist and being a member of the Church of Satan, I keep that on the DL. If they ask me if I go to church or believe in god, I tell them to ask me after they graduate. Sometimes they debate religion while we are working and I’ll listen to make sure that everything is fair and factual. I’ll chime in as soon as the conversation begins to get personal or if somebody says something inaccurate. This means that I’ve corrected them about the beliefs on some Christians, Hindus, etc. And yes, I’ve defended Satanism.

A real life example: One time a student said that Satanists sacrifice animals and children. Obviously this is crazy and I corrected him. I’m a teacher, which means I am here to teach. I don’t want to create little Satanists, I want to create good people. I want to make sure that these children get thrown into the world with the ability to fact check and question everything.

I do, though, weave satanic sentiments into my teaching and class rules. We respect other people’s time in class, which means knowing when to work, when to chat, and when to listen to Ms. Hippenstiel. This means that nobody should expect to be listened to if they can’t take their eyes off their phone while others are presenting. I also get them to try to work out their own issues before coming to me because I don’t have time to split up fights about desks. But I don’t try to turn them into Satanists. It’s against my religious beliefs to indoctrinate people.

The biggest rule in my class is “Get Over Yourself”. This is important in the theatre because if you spend too much time thinking about how silly you might look, you will never give a good performance. Hell, I was in a play where I played an evil preacher that came back from the dead to yell at gay people who were also dead because they had died of AIDs. It’s called Elegies for Angels, Punks, and Raging Queens and it’s FUCKING BOMB. If I had gotten too worried about what I looked like, I wouldn’t have been able to get audience members to hiss at me when I finished my piece.

I have the future of the United States of America in my hands every day. All I want is for the students to leave school one day and be able to enter the next step of their life with confidence. I was a pretty bad student back in the day, so I understand what it’s like to have a teacher change your life, as my high school English teacher did for me.

I hope they feel safe and loved in my class. If these things hold true, I’ve done my job.

Enjoy the rest of the day, my Lovely Leviathans

HS!

LH