HATERS BEWARE. Las Vegas contains a clown hater's nightmare
- a casino which can be described as containing a highwire
act, and a garish pink and white big-top looking roof,
and if you drive to Vegas East on Interstate 15, you'll
see their signs for cheap rooms. One night I let cheapness
get the better of me. At $19 a night, we decided to take
a room at the Clown House of Horrors. The location of
our room was the 'Ranch.' Hell-hole would have been a
more appropriate name. The $19 a night room was adorned
in orange and brown and freaky clown pictures hung from
the orange, brown and gold wallpapered walls (which were
approximately 1/4" thick-I swear). Anyway, after some
moderate drinking, gambling (lost BIG) and cheap buffet
fare, we returned to our clown accommodations. When I
fell asleep the clown pictures began moving like balloons
at a dart throwing booth. I had horrible nightmares which
included my unsuccessful escape from a clown with a plateful
of buffet food. I was not born or raised to be a clown-hater,
but after my encounter in clown-hell, I'm really not the
are those who claim that clowns are jolly, happy-go-lucky
sorts whose only wish is to bring joy to the hearts of
people everywhere. Those who claim this are naive fools.
The truth is that clowns are, without exception, vicious
psychopaths, just waiting for the chance to pounce upon
some unsuspecting victim and tear them limb from limb.
My first encounter with the horror that is a clown came
when I was six years old. My mother was spending the afternoon
volunteering for a charity event at the local zoo. She
took me along, and I soon became restless and wandered
off to see the polar bears. I was almost immediately accosted
by a grinning, grease-painted demon (who was, although
I didn't know it at the time, a co-worker of my mother's),
who took it upon herself to follow me everywhere I went.
Her voice was a shrill helium-soaked nightmare, her shoes
were enormous, and her face was like death made up as
a streetwalker. I screamed and ran blindly through the
zoo, trying to escape, but somehow she kept up. after
what seemed like hours, I finally found my mother, and
screaming incoherently, threw myself at her legs. We had
to leave, of course, and it was almost a month before
the nightmares stopped. To this day, if I happen to run
into a clown, I break into a cold sweat and have to immediately
go to some safe, non-clown place. No, there's nothing
funny or nice about clowns.
have to be honest an say I truly do not understand my
loathing of clowns. I do not find them the least bit amusing.
I can not remember a time in my life when I was not afraid
of them however. All my life, any time clowns were a topic
of conversation, people thought it hilarious that I hated
clowns. My sister sent me this address, like it was some
big joke. People have told me they do not like clowns,
but that is not the same thing. I passionatley truly hate
clowns. It was such a releif to me to read other people
feel the same way as I do. My husband and I took our sons
to the circus 2 years ago. It was all I could do to keep
from yelling at the clowns to stay the ----- away from
my children. They roam the audience before the show starts
and we were unfortunatley sitting near the front. My children
do not like clowns either and I know this is my fault.
I try to be neutral in my feelings for clowns when they
are around, but I'm sure they can sense that I have open
hostility for any clown I encounter. Thank you for allowing
me to vent these feelings. I appreciate that there are
other clown haters out there. I am not alone.
Mc. -Glen Ellyn, IL
the time I was about 5 years old to about 8 years old,
I had a recurring clown nightmare. There used to be a
long hallway in the house that I lived in. In the house,
there was a long hallway, and about halfway down the hall
you could make a left to go upstairs to the livingroom.
Or you could continue straight to the very end of the
hallway where a large black clothes hamper was kept.
Well, in the dream I would always try to make the turn
onto the stairs, but I would be thwarted by a huge laughing
clown that popped out of the clothes hamper and dragged
me back with him, tickling me and laughing maniacally
all the way.
Sometimes he's use a conveyor belt, sometimes rope or
sometimes the bastard would just grab me around the neck.
It wasn't til I moved out of that house that the dream
I hate clowns.
yeah. Of course clowns are evil. Pennywise, Gacy, and
that fucked-up "Keane-Eyes" painting that used to hang
in the back bedroom of my grandmother's house. The one
where I slept when we visited. Man, I hated that evil
clown. But there was one good clown. One beacon of light
in the evil morass. Shakes. (Krusty's ok, too.) Anyway,
one Halloween, I decided to be Shakes. Of course, it wasn't
enough for me just to DRESS as Shakes, I had to do the
Method actor thing and swim to the bottom of a family-size
bottle of Cuervo. So there I am, three a.m., in a bad
part of San Francisco, trying to hail a cab in my Shakes
outfit, with my makeup badly smudged, tequila on my breath,
and a stupid rubber hammer in my hand. Needless to say,
it took a while to get a ride. And I don't blame the cab
drivers a bit.
But here's where it gets weird:
The following spring, some friends of mine were traveling
the country and stopped at a garage sale somewhere in
Pennsylvania. There they found an oil-on-velvet painting
of a clown that LOOKS JUST LIKE ME!!!!!! They bought it
and used one of those silver sparkle pens to autograph
it "To Hugh. With love, Shakes." And the sonofabitch stares
me down every time I go to the basement. (Which, of course,
is where I hung it.)
Do you think my soul is possibly trapped inside this painting?
Did something unintended happen that fateful Halloween?
I've gotta go now. I'm feeling the urge to create carnivorous
fear is not specifically of actual people dressed as clowns.
(Or it may be, but I strenuously avoid places such idiots
frequent.) I am afraid of clown dolls, specifically. Man,
"Poltergeist" *still* gives me nightmares, 15 years later!
I'm also terrified by movies wherein a ventriloquist's
dummy or some puppet becomes sentient and chases its owner
around with point objects. Dear God! It's witnessing those
kinds of movies that really tests the limits of my sanity.
I wish we could instigate some anti-Clown doll legislation.
19 now, and I never had a problem with clowns before,
but I'm now convinced clowns are evil. I'm working as
an intern for a small high-tech company, and went to a
company picnic last weekend. There were two really scary
clowns there to entertain employees' children--these two
dumpy women, all dressed up in the awful red clothes,
except one of them wasn't wearing a wig. All the parents
there forced their kids to let the clowns paint their
faces. Soon, all the little kids were tired and the clowns
didn't have anyone to pick on. Then, one of the clowns
announced that she needed adults to volunteer to play
a game. Of course, no one wanted to step forward and put
himself at this clown's mercy, so one of the picnic's
planners started calling out names. I was chosen, so I
had to walk up to the stage and wait for the clowns to
humiliate me. The clowns divided us victims into two teams
and told us we were going to "race." We had to put on
five pieces of tacky clothing, eat a slice of banana,
and take off the clothes. I got stuck with a grass skirt,
swimsuit top, wig, straw hat, and a lai. The clowns teased
me as I fumbled with the skirt and swimsuit trying to
put them on over my own clothing. To make thins worse,
my boss teased me about it after the picnic. Clowns are
evil and sadistic!
suppose it's possible that I've always been repelled by
clowns. Throughout my life, the sight of a clown have
sent my heart racing and I have that instantaneous and
overwhelming sensation of fight or flight (flight has
always won out). Photos of clowns don't bother me so much.
Nor do films that feature clowns (although sitting through
Killer Klowns From Outer Space tested my limits).
No... it's the real, live, in-your-face clowns that send
me into panic attacks. I've actually crossed streets at
outdoor festivals and left parties where I have seen clowns
doing their thing.
I can recall two memories from childhood that I think
probably contributed directly to my longtime fear of clowns.
One took place when I was six years old, during a visit
to a local county fair. I was there with my brother, Dave,
who would have been about 16 years old at that time. I
was having a great time, riding the rides and everything.
Then, he walked me over to the House of Mirrors. I never
even made it inside. Outside the building, in a plexiglass
case, there was a somewhat larger-than-life animated clown
- fat and hideous, laughing maniacally and lolling its
head around on its shoulders. I backed away from the clown
as soon as I saw and heard it, but my brother was insistent
that I go in the House of Mirrors with him. Nothing doing.
I was terrified of getting lost in there, only to meet
up with more clowns like the one cavorting outside.
The other early recollection I have is a bit murkier,
but it still conjures up an even more repulsive feeling
than even the county fair episode. It occurred when I
was about four years old, which would have been sometime
around 1973. Basically, I recall being at a local auto
shop/gas station with my father because my dad was having
his car repaired or something. That must have been the
case because I remember walking home.
Anyway, the guy who ran the place was an acquaintance
of my father's, but I don't think he was a family friend
or anything. He was an old, dirty, grizzled guy and I
know I didn't like him at all. The three of us were standing
in the front office of the place and my dad and the old
guy were talking. Then, the old man asked if I wanted
to see something in the back room. I know I was hesitant
to go, but my dad said to go with him, so I did.
So, the old man and I went into the back room together
and he led me up to this enormous, garishly painted clown.
In reality, it was probably about 5 or 6 feet tall, but,
from my four-year-old vantage point, it was gigantic.
The old guy gave me a penny and instructed me to put it
in the slot in the clown's stomach. I did and was rewarded
with a gumball. But, at the same time the gumball dropped
from a hole in the clown's stomach, the rest of him came
to life. His head spun back and forth, his arms went up
and down and he laughed. That crazy clown laugh.
Naturally, I was terrified and made a hasty retreat back
to the front office, to my waiting father.
So, looking back on those two particular episodes, I guess
my most terrifying experiences with clowns weren't even
with living clowns - they were animtronic clowns (or something
close to it). However, since that time, I have had my
share of face-to-face encounters with breathing clowns
to give me a greater understanding of why I've never gone
to a circus.
Carpenter -New York, NY
fellow clown-haters: I knew you were out there!
Strangely enough, I found this web-site in an article
in defense of clowns! (The State Journal-Register, Springfield,
IL) The writer theorized that people are only afraid of
clowns due to the horror movies that started coming out
in the early '80's. She missed the point. That's WHY it
was so scary to have an evil clown doll under the bed
in "Poltergeist" -- everyone was ALREADY scared of clowns!
The movie-makers just tapped into common childhood fears.
Those movies and Stephen King's "It" merely confirmed
what I already suspected about clowns: they are evil,
hiding behind the makeup and stupid clothes, probably
thinking what an idiot you are, and calculating how they
could get you alone to do God-knows-what.
Besides, there were no negative images of clowns in the
late 60's-early 70's when I was tiny, so I wasn't taught
by movies to hate them. It was instinctive and I never
got over it. Man, I hate clowns!
Here's a nightmare for all you clown-haters: at MacMurray
College in Jacksonville, IL, there's a student clown ministry
called "The Holy Fools." Motto: We're Fools for Christ.
I kid you not. When I was a student there in the early
80's, the Fools (as I liked to sneer) were always bouncing
around acting stupid. (No offense intended against religion,
but what a disgusting way to try to pass it on.) The makeup
seems to release any inhibitions they had, and they'd
come up and honk at you and do somersaults and just act
annoying in the campus center. I'd just grit my teeth
and say, "Get. Away. From. Me. I'm not kidding. I hate
clowns." Of course, they act like you're a child molester
if you don't want to take part in their little scenarios.
But we know the truth, don't we?
C. -Springfield, Illinois
story isn't as frightening as the others but I feel better
talking about it. I think my fear of clowns comes from
a cartoon I watched when I was young. The cartoon was
Scoobie Doo. In the beginning that horrible clown would
pop up and laugh a cynical laugh and then float around
the screen. I never really realized that the clown frightened
me so much until a few years ago when my town acquired
a local Bozo (literally, he is an idiot). The man looks
like a clown even when he is not in costume. It is hard
to avoid him because the city hires him to show up to
every major event. No matter how hard people try to convince
me that clowns are good, I still think that there is something
evil about them.