October 31, 2016: Monday ONAIRprep (HALLOWEEN)

***DAILY DOSE OF WEIRD NEWS – FREE TO AIR! (Need to receive this earlier than when it’s posted? Get FTP access and receive a fully-produced version FREE with a customized tag specifically for your station or show! Contact me with your ONAIRprep username for details!)




I was talking to a friend of mine last night, and she’s not allowing her kids to go trick-or-treating at all this year.  It’s not that she’s afraid of them getting hurt or that it’s too scary or anything – it’s just that they still haven’t finished all the candy they got last year.


(Chosen specifically for Halloween!) “There shall not be found among you anyone who makes his son or his daughter pass through the fire, one who uses divination, one who practices witchcraft, or one who interprets omens, or a sorcerer, or one who casts a spell, or a medium, or a spiritist, or one who calls up the dead. For whoever does these things is detestable to the LORD; and because of these detestable things the LORD your God will drive them out before you.” –Deuteronomy 18:10-12

God “will give to each person according to what he has done.” To those who by persistence in doing good seek glory, honor and immortality, he will give eternal life. –Romans 2:6-7

It is by grace you have been saved, through faith – and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God – not by works, so that no one can boast. — Ephesians 2:8-9


(From VerseOfTheDay.com)

We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ. — 2 Corinthians 10:5

Thought: The apostle Paul knew he was in a war against spiritual forces opposed to God (cf. Ephesians 6:10-12). While these forces might have a great deal of influence in the world at large, Paul was determined that Satan’s deception wouldn’t rule in God’s churches. He was committed to truth in an age obsessed with many different gods, beliefs, and choices. Can we be any less vigilant in our day and in a culture obsessed with so many of the same ideas?

Prayer: Holy God, please forgive our lack of spiritual vigilance and cowardice in the marketplace of ideas. Stir us by your Spirit to speak the truth in love. Convict us of the need to confront ideas that are detrimental to faith, righteousness, and truth with sound and godly wisdom. Arouse us from our lazy stupor and call us again to be your holy and committed people. In Jesus name I pray. Amen.

The Thoughts and Prayers for Today’s Verse are written by Phil Ware. You can email questions or comments to phil@heartlight.org.


1 Corinthians 10:31 NIV = So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.


(NOTE: Some holidays may be duplicated due to various calendars reporting conflicting dates)

Today is HALLOWEEN, established in the year 834 by Pope Gregory the 4th to honor the saints, the first All Hallows Eve was observed by all Christian churches. ***You didn’t know Halloween was a Christian holiday, did you?!

Today is SNEAK SOME OF THE CANDY YOURSELF BEFORE THE KIDS START KNOCKING DAY.  ***Actually, we started this about a week and a half ago.  We’ve already had to replenish the candy stash FOUR TIMES! And we don’t even HAVE kids!

Today is NATIONAL KNOCK-KNOCK JOKES DAY, a day for kids of all ages to try out their knock-knock jokes.  ***Oh great – so not only will we hear “trick or treat,” but we’ll also hear, “knock-knock. . . who’s there. . . banana. . . banana who. . . knock knock. . . who’s there. . . banana. . . banana who. . . ”


Beggar’s Night

Books for Treats Day

Day of the Seven Billion

Girl Scout Founder’s Day

Halloween/All Hallows Eve

National Caramel Apple Day

National Knock-Knock Jokes Day

National Magic Day

National UNICEF Day


World Cities Day

COMING UP NEXT (Just a list, we are not endorsing the holidays posted below.)


All Saints’ Day

Autistic Speaking Day

Hockey Mask Day ***Shouldn’t this be reserved for a Friday the 13TH?

Dia de Los Muertos (Day Of The Dead)

Extra Mile Day

Give Up Your Shoulds Day

National Authors Day

National Family Caregiver Day

National Family Literacy Day

National Go Cook For Your Pets Day

Prime Meridian Day

World Vegan Day


All Souls Day

Cookie Monster Day

International Day to End Impunity for Crimes Against Journalists

National Traffic Professionals Day

Plan Your Epitaph Day


Cliche Day

National Men Make Dinner Day (NO BBQ ALLOWED!)

Public Television Day

Sandwich Day



National Chicken Lady Day

National Candy Day


Punkin Chunkin

Use Your Common Sense Day

National Medical Science Liaison Awareness & Appreciation Day


Digital Scrapbooking Day

National Love Your Red Hair Day

Pumpkin Destruction Day

Sadie Hawkins Day

Sausage and Kraut Day

Stout Day


Daylight Saving Time Ends @2:00am (turn clocks back 1 hour)

International Day for Preventing the Exploitation of the Environment in War and Armed Conflict

National Nachos Day

Saxophone Day

Zero Tasking Day


Employee Brotherhood Day

Fill Our Staplers Day

International Merlot Day

Job Action Day

National Bittersweet Chocolate with Almonds Day

National Canine Lymphoma Awareness Day

Traffic Directors Day


1959: Lee Harvey Oswald told reporters in Russia, “I will never return to the United States.” ***See where lying gets you?

1986: For the first time, Universal Studios in Hollywood opened at night. “Halloween Horror Night” featured Dracula, the Mummy, King Kong, the Creature from the Black Lagoon, the Wolfman, and Rick Dees. ***Rick Dees?!? What were they trying to do, frighten people?!?

1991: At their Halloween wedding, Jayne and Dale Peterson of Madison, Wisconsin, were married dressed as Frankenstein and the bride of Frankenstein. At the reception, the champagne was chilled in a coffin. ***The groom said they dressed that way so he would know what his bride was going to look like every morning.


451: At the 15th Session of the Council of Chalcedon, Canon 28 was adopted, granting Constantinole a patriarchate extending over the civil dioceses of Pontus, Asia, and Thrace.

834: Established by Pope Gregory the 4th to honor the saints, the first All Hallows Eve was observed by all Christian churches.

1517: German Augustinian monk Martin Luther, 31, nailed to the door of the castle church in Wittenberg a list of 95 theological points he wished to debate … and touched off the Protestant Reformation!

1832: American Episcopal scholar George Washington Doane, 33, was consecrated as second Bishop of the Diocese of NJ. Doane is better remembered today as author of the hymn, “Softly Now the Light of Day.”

1852: Swiss moral philosopher Henry F. Amiel wrote in his journal: ‘Every landscape is, as it were, a state of the soul, and whoever penetrates into both is astonished to find how much likeness there is in each detail.’

1870: Birth of Hugh Ross Mackintosh, Scottish theologian. Teaching systematics at Edinburgh 1904-35, Mackintosh had a firm grasp of the German theological writers of his day and sought to make their teachings known in Britain, for which he was unfairly judged a liberal.


  • Actor (Rush Hour movies, The Fifth Element) Chris Tucker, 43

  • actor (The Waterboy, Fifty First Dates, The Animal) Rob Schneider 52

  • Actor (Young Guns, My Best Friend’s Wedding) Dermot Mulroney, 53

  • actor (Maj. Charles Emerson Winchester on “M*A*S*H”, Reverend Perdy on “The Dead Zone”) David Ogden Stiers 74 (audio clip)


(Music Artist Birthdays From SongFacts.com)

1912 : Dale Evans

1922 : Illinois Jacquet

1927 : Anita Kerr

1934 : Ray Smith

1937 : Tom Paxton
1940 : Eric Griffiths (The Quary Men)

1945 : Rik Kenton (Roxy Music)

1947 : Russ Ballard (Unit 4+2, Argent)

1952 : Bernard Edwards (Chic)

1953 : Johnny Clegg

1961 : Larry Mullen (U2)

1963 : Johnny Marr (The Smiths)

1966 : Adam Horovitz (Beastie Boys)

1968 : Vanilla Ice

1970 : Linn Berggren (Ace Of Base)


Is stress ever a good thing?

Stress may be good for people. Rockefeller University scientists have determined that an acute episode of stress boosts immunity, offering better protection against infection. The fact that people don’t usually catch a cold until a crisis is over may be due to the fact that humans have acute elevations in stress hormones, thus elevating the body’s immune response.


This is just a tiny sample of the 5-6 pages of material you could be receiving three days a week from ChristianRadioShowPrepServices.com!

Casting Crowns Jaun Devevo was in Indianapolis last week but it didn’t affect his loyalties. While in town for a concert, Juan said he walked by the home of the Indianapolis Colts. He says he made sure to shake his fist at it. Jaun added go Jaguars, a tribute to his favorite NFL team the Jacksonville Jaguars.

Earlier this month Matt Redman released his first Christmas CD, titled These Christmas Lights. Now he’s out with a video telling the story behind the album. https://youtu.be/mmcNBSXjIVQ

Matthew West braved 80 degree temperatures in his hometown of Franklin, Tennessee to help his fellow Tennesseens get into the Christmas spirit. In celebration of his new Christmas album, Matthew walked the streets of town sharing his music and talking with those he met about their favorite Christmas experience. Check out the Matthew West Christmas video at https://youtu.be/skCBRilLavY.

Just a few more days remain to vote for your favorite Christian artists. Hillsong United, Lauren Daigle and Chris Tomlin are each in the running for an American Music Award in the Contemporary Inspirational Category. You can vote for your favorite artist once a day through November 14. http://AMAvote.com

The Afters want to hear your Battle stories. Just use the text TheAftersBattles to send your story to the band.

More than a decade ago, Steven Curtis Chapman first joined Family Life Today in the studio to share his heart for orphans. His organization, Show Hope, has now helped more than 5,000 orphans. This week Chapman was back in the studio to talk with Dennis Rainey and Bob Lepine about their six care centers in China. He says at least 500 of the kids who have come through the centers have been adopted. Chapman also talks about his 30-year musical career and gives an update on his family. Listen to the broadcast at http://bit.ly/2dP75ym

Big Daddy Weave didn’t let a little thing like a concert keep them from enjoying the World series. Members of the band posted pictures as they caught up on the game between sets.

Family Life Today Cohost Bob Lepine was watching the Spurs game last week and realized that the broadcast had an interesting combination of sponsors. The opening game of the season was sponsored by Burger King’s bacon King burger and by Fitbit. Bob posted: irony, anyone?

After raising nearly $10,000 in the first week, the campaign for Sonicflood lead singer Rick Heil has remained nearly steady at that amount. The go fund me effort hoped to raise $25,000 to fund an experimental treatment for Rick’s crohn’s disease after traditional treatments failed. Band members are still hoping that the additional $15,000 can be raised and that the experimental medical procedures will provide the miracle he needs. http://fb.me/1AGcUruE6

Casting Crowns Mark Hall is playing it safe. The band’s lead singer is also a youth pastor. He posted a picture of a corn maze on a pitch-black night and said: I’ve seen way too many movies to venture in there.



(No news on the weekends. As on ONAIRprep subscriber, you can get a fully-produced, customized version of the Daily Dose of Weird News FREE with a station or show specific tag! Email darren@onairprep.com for details!)


Plan on “standing your ground” any time soon? Got an itchy trigger finger? Like to keep lots of loaded weapons laying around the house? Maybe you should get “If I Shoot Someone” insurance. Yes, that’s a thing now. Several hundred thousand U.S. gun owners now subscribe to a service that promises immediate legal and financial protection for a shooting provided you can reasonably argue it was justified. For just over $10 a month, U.S. Law Shield pledges to get you a good lawyer for “zero” money. Compare that to the $1.5 million in legal fees George Zimmerman racked up after he killed Trayvon Martin in 2012. ***Actually, this might be a good thing to invest in.  You know… before the in-laws arrive for the holidays…

New research from economists at Princeton, the University of Rochester and the University of Chicago says that young men in their late teens and early twenties would rather play video games than get jobs.  ***How is this news?  I’m ___ years old and I’d rather stay home too.  Welcome to the human race, boys.

Here’s something else to add to the “not on a plane” list when packing. Customs officers at an Austrian airport were shocked to find human entrails in the bag of a Moroccan traveler! She claimed they were from her dead husband. The intestines had been carefully wrapped and placed in two receptacles. The unnamed woman explained that she suspected her deceased husband, a Moroccan born in 1976, had been poisoned and she wished to have a toxicology analysis of his tissue carried out. ***They might want to also check the woman herself… for drugs.  There’s no way I’d be able to do something like this unless I had something illegal in my bloodstream.

In San Jose, California, Selena Avalos had ordered a box of chicken wings from Domino’s. They got her order wrong – in a most spectacular way. When Selena opened the box she found – not chicken wings – but $5,000 in cash! But, rather than keep it, she called Domino’s who PROMPTLY sent a driver back to pick it up. To show their appreciation, Domino’s has offered her free pizza for a year. If that weren’t enough, her employer Spacetel, was so impressed with the story, they’ve also rewarded her with a free week off with full pay!  ***Why do these things NEVER HAPPEN TO ME?!?!?!

A Canadian man is suing Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) for what he claims is discrimination against atheists and agnostics. The AA program was started in 1939 and has “Twelve Steps,” many of which include reference to God or a “higher power.” Although AA allows atheists and agnostics to participate in their meetings, that was not enough for Lawrence Knight.  He took AA to the Ontario Human Rights Tribunal and argued that the AA’s “Twelve Steps” should be rewritten to exclude mention of God. On November 18, all parties involved in the lawsuit will sit down to attempt to resolve the conflict.  ***So because you don’t like the mention of “God”, you want to completely change something that has a proven track record and has helped hundreds of thousands of people get over the terrible addiction, affliction, and disease of alcoholism?  You’d condemn all of these people so you don’t have to hear the name of someone you don’t even believe exists?  http://dlvr.it/MXH9v7

Republican Vice Presidential nominee Mike Pence’s campaign plane skidded off a wet and slippery runway while landing at LaGuardia Airport in New York City last night. Fortunately, no one was injured in the incident.  ***It was so scary that Mike Pence’s already white hair turned clear.

Twitter announced it’s going to cut 9% of its world-wide workforce. ***All pink slips will be 140 characters or less.


Dressing up your dog or hamster in a costume today? A few decades ago you would have been considered a batty pet owner. Not anymore. Sales of pet costumes have soared in recent years.  ***So we have animals dressing as humans – and humans dressing as animals.  Isn’t this one of the signs of Jesus returning soon?

A Halloween-themed poll finds about a third of those surveyed believe in ghosts.  ***But then, that’s about the same number of people who believe (Donald Trump/Hillary Clinton) would make a great President, so I don’t know that it’s a reliable sample.

Starbucks is selling Halloween themed Frappuccino.  ***And they’re selling it at a frighteningly high price.  But then, that’s because it’s Starbucks.

Family matters is suggesting you look at Halloween in a whole new light this year. They say the holiday on the final day of October is the best day of the year to build community. That’s because people leave their fenced yards and their closed-in houses and walk around the neighborhood. Family Matters authors suggest, rather then staying in your house and handing out candy, you get out there and celebrate with everyone else on your street. ***MARLAR: That sounds like fun – but then who is going to be here at my house to pass out the candy? Waiiiit a minute… if no one is here to pass it out, that means it’s all left over for me.  I LIKE this plan!!!

Halloween doesn’t seem to be negatively affected by the bad economy. Americans are expected to spend an average of $79.82 each this year for Halloween decorations, costumes and candy. That’s up from $72.31 last year. ***Only eighty bucks to spend on Halloween? That’s not enough for my own personal stash of Snickers bars!

Halloween is a good holiday for restaurateurs looking to scare up business, according to the National Restaurant Association. Research found that 20% of Americans said they expect to order takeout or delivery from a restaurant while they wait for trick-or-treaters to visit. That figure rises to 33% for younger adults ages 18 to 34, and 28% for families with children. ***MARLAR: And even more scary than the costumes at Halloween will be the astronomical delivery fees.

Ever heard of a Mormon Halloween party?  Apparently the rules for costume selection are a bit specific.

A recent Halloween party hosted by a Mormon church ward in Utah angered at least one resident after fliers specified no “cross-gender” costumes.  That meant no girls dressed as Harry Potter or boys as Lady Liberty at the party in Sandy Utah.  Raquel Smith says she was “appalled” when she read the flier taped to her door. She is not a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.  The flier urged children to “wear costumes” but noted, “please no masks or cross-gender dressing.”  Smith calls it “fear-mongering and hate-driven.”  ***MARLAR: So someone throws a party and you don’t like the rules they have about attending?  Used to be, when that happened, we’d just decide not to go to the party.  When did that change?

WONDER WOMAN (This feature will be disappearing in 2017)


DAILY COMEDY CLIP (This feature will be disappearing in 2017)




OPEN: And now FancyMonkey.com, (Show Name), and (Station Call Letters) bring you another inspiringly inspiring inspirational inspiration in the never-ending deep jungle soap opera saga that is As the Jungle Turns!

CLOSE: So Racquet the Skunk makes his own badminton racquets – who knew? But will a new racquet really help Gruffy Bear with his badminton game, or is this just a way for Racquet to get a cool new hammer for practically nothing? Find out next time, As the Jungle Turns!

AS THE JUNGLE TURNS – SATURDAY/SUNDAY VERSION (This feature will be disappearing in 2017)


OPEN: And now, FancyMonkey.com, (Show Name), and (Station Call Letters) bring you As the Jungle Turns! When last we left the jungle, all of the animals were selling all of their possessions and packing up to move out of the jungle as fast as possible because they were all terrified of a giant, disgusting, loud, smelly, awful giant-footed monster! But just before everyone moved, Sully the Aardvark thought about something…

CLOSE: Oh great… so maybe the monster IS real! Tune in again next time, As the Jungle Turns!

***You may simulcast “As the Jungle Turns” on the Internet stream of your live broadcast only. Any other Internet use of “As the Jungle Turns” in whole or part including podcasting of your live broadcast is a violation of copyright law. Thank you for your cooperation on this vitally important issue. If you have any questions, please e-mail us and ask about “Jungle Jam & Friends the Radio Show” usage.


Sometimes a really cool Halloween costume can become a really bad Moment of Duh.

Bryan Gibson, for a Halloween costume, decided to become the “grill master” — a backyard barbecuer whose propane tank had exploded in his face. He blackened his face, sprayed his hair into a wild pattern, splashed fake blood all over himself and used latex to create the illusion of scorched, mangled flesh. He tossed an oven mitt and a spatula into his car, then began the 30-mile drive north to his Cincinnati office. After a little while, Gibson started hearing sirens. He kept looking in his rearview, but never did see any flashing lights. So he kept driving, doing the speed limit, stopping at all the lights. He finally made it into town pulling off the highway onto city streets. The next thing he knew a car pulled in front of him and a guy in plain clothes got out and pointed a gun at him. The man forced Gibson out of his car, then flipped him onto the hood, spreading his arms and legs. More police cars showed up, and cops told him he’d “stirred up a hornet’s nest” because of the way Gibson looked. After police were told he was simply dressed for a Halloween costume contest they let him go. For the record, Gibson did win the $50 Best Costume prize.



  • The Thingie
  • Canterbury Tales from the Crypt
  • The Sixth Grade
  • John Carpenter’s “Cafeteria Lady”
  • Friday the 15th: Rent’s Still Due
  • Beheadin’-Shoulders: The Hair Itch Project
  • The Snuggling
  • The Bride of BenStein
  • We Know How You Voted in November
  • I’m Not Absolutely Positive What You Did Last Summer, But I’ve Got a Pretty Good Idea, and When Your Father Comes Home, We’re All Going to Have a Little Talk


One group of trick-or-treaters got a lot more than they bargained for!

FILE #1: In Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada, a trio of young trick-or-treaters was left a little dumbfounded Halloween night last year when a neighborhood house began handing out cans of beer instead of candy. Dave Kozicki said his nine-year-old son and two friends were nearing the end of their route when a man, apparently drunk, tossed the unwanted treats into their bags and told them not to come back. The cops were called and they charged the 53-year-old man with distributing alcohol to minors.

FILE #2: David Barnes took a cab to the local Walgreen’s, asked the cabbie to wait on him and went inside. He then went to the Halloween section where he put on a scary mask before walking up to the cashier and demanding money, gesturing as though he had a gun in his pocket. The clerk was so nervous that she couldn’t open the register and finally our frustrated would-be robber left empty handed. He got back into the waiting cab which took him home. The cops contacted the cab company, got David’s address and made the arrest.

FILE #3: Pretend you’re a parolee. Of course, stealing anything would violate parole, right? Now, what if you go out and steal something anyway… and that stolen item happens to be a prison uniform?  Florida police arrested an ex-convict at a rock festival wearing a stolen bright orange prison uniform. The 25-year-old from Lakeland allegedly stole the uniform when he was released in January. The suspect told officers he was in a Halloween costume. Of course, it was April, so the cops saw through that excuse. He was arrested for violating his parole.

FILE #4: Last year, two Richmond, California, teenagers got spooked on Halloween. The two approached a man and said the single word ‘wallet.’ Unfortunately, the man they requested the wallet from was an off-duty cop, who drew his weapon, identified himself and ordered both teens to the ground. With his semiautomatic handgun pointing its red laser-sight at one kid’s forehead, they ran. However, his co-workers soon caught the kids and took them to a non-haunted jailhouse.

FILE #5: Near Peekskill, New York, a jail went into lockdown and recounted its prisoners on Halloween night last year after a former inmate was spotted trick-or-treating in his old orange prisoner’s jumpsuit. The former inmate was taking his daughter trick-or-treating when a county correction officer — also out trick-or-treating with her child — spotted the familiar jumpsuit. When confronted, the former prisoner ran and then drove off. The officer took down the man’s license plate and called authorities. The jail went into lockdown until a prisoner count established that no one was missing. Meanwhile, police found the former inmate, confiscated the genuine jumpsuit and let him go.

FILE #6: According to authorities, Aubrey McClelland robbed the video store late Halloween night two years ago. But employees at the store know McClelland’s girlfriend and recognized his voice. Police say at first, the Blockbuster employees thought McClelland was wearing a Halloween costume. After asking about new releases, investigators say the man pulled a gun and robbed the store of about 300-dollars.  McClelland was busted later at his girlfriend’s apartment.

STRANGE LAW: Everyone walking on the streets of Elko, Nevada is required to wear a mask. Halloween or not.


Alcohol and drugs don’t mix… even if they are mixed.

Lots of home beer makers flavor their brews with something exotic. But authorities in Santa Cruz, California, charge a graduate student added kick to his suds with something very illegal. Prosecutors report Chad Renzelman has pleaded no contest to heroin possession. Police say they found morphine-spiked beer in his garage. The organic chemistry student told authorities he extracted opium from poppies, which he then converted to morphine. He claimed he didn’t know it was illegal to make morphine beer. Renzelman avoids prison time after being sentenced to a drug diversion program.


How much of the Halloween candy have you already eaten before the first costumed kid has made it to your door?

What candy do you buy – stuff that YOU would eat when it’s leftover, or stuff you know the kids would like? Or do you go the cheap route and buy whatever is on sale? And what will you do with your leftover candy? Will you give it all to the last kid of the night? Do you munch on it yourself for the next few days? Take it to the office? Share it with elderly friends and neighbors? What happens to the leftover candy you don’t dole out tonight?


QUESTION: There is an American city by the name of Frankenstein. What state is it in?

ANSWER: Missouri (about 20 miles east of Jefferson City)


QUESTION: There is an American city by the name of Frankenstein. What state is it in?

ANSWER: Missouri (about 20 miles east of Jefferson City)


Pay attention! If our next player doesn’t answer all ten T/F questions correctly we start all over from question #1! First person to answer question #10 correctly is our winner!

1. A chameleon’s tongue is three times the the length of its body. (False – it’s twice the length of its body.)

2. A rhinoceros horn is made of enamel, like teeth. (False – the rhino’s horn is made of compacted hair.)

3. The only place on the body of a cow that has sweat glands is the udder. (False – it’s the nose.)

4. The only mammal that lays eggs is the platypus. (False, the echidna does as well.)

5. The wingspan of a bald eagle is 6 to 8 feet. (True)

6. Ants never sleep. (True)

7. Earthworms have two hearts. (False – they have five!)

8. Rhinoplasty is plastic surgery of the nose. (True)

9. CQD means the same as SOS. (True – well, it used to. CQD was the international distress signal before SOS was adopted.)

10. Crab was the name of the only dog in a William Shakespeare play. (True)


You have to match the blank in the tabloid headline with the word or phrase that has been removed!


Over a decade ago, an exciting trend hit the toy market: virtual pets. The toys allowed kids and teens to have their own digital animal to watch over. Giga Pets were some of the most popular virtual pets on the market, but the trend soon died out and many forgot about the toys — until now.

Jimmy Thompson, a 28-year-old graduate student in the computer science program at Ohio University, recently rummaged through his old toys on a trip to his parents’ house and made a startling discovery: His Giga Pet was not only still working, it had become self-aware.

“It started just speaking to me,” Thompson said. “Told me it was glad to see me — that it ‘had been too long’ and that it ‘about time for dinner.’ I hadn’t turned on — much less fed — the thing in years.”

Thompson brought the device back to the college to confirm his findings. Though he was more than unsettled by the incident, his peers and professors could not be more elated at the prospect of a sentient virtual pet.

“Obviously, the toy was capable of so much more than we ever thought it could be,” said Dr. Dennis Chang, professor at the school. “Since it got here, it hasn’t stopped talking — demanding more food and more attention. If this guy is alive, what does that mean for the thousands and thousands still out there?”

Another professor was not so enthusiastic.

“We need to destroy it,” said faculty member Donald Felton. “If these things can do this much more than thought, what happens when we don’t give it enough. What happens when we don’t give them all enough?  We don’t want some kind of war born out of a Giga Pet.”



A man was walking home alone late one foggy night when behind him he hears: BUMP, BUMP, BUMP.

Walking faster, he looks back and through the fog he makes out the image of an upright casket banging its way down the middle of the street toward him. BUMP, BUMP, BUMP.

Terrified, the man begins to run toward his home, the casket bouncing quickly behind him FASTER, FASTER, BUMP, BUMP, BUMP.

He runs up to his door, fumbles with his keys, opens the door, rushes in, slams and locks the door behind him. However, the casket crashes through his door, with the lid of the casket clapping, clappity-BUMP, clappity-BUMP,


On his heels, the terrified man runs. Rushing upstairs to the bathroom, the man locks himself in. His heart is pounding; his head is reeling; his breath is coming in sobbing gasps. With a loud CRASH the casket breaks down the door, bumping and clapping toward him.

The man screams and reaches for something, anything, but all he can find is a bottle of Robitussin! Desperate, he throws the cough syrup at the casket – and the coffin stops!


A circus owner walked into a diner to see everyone crowded around a table watching a little show. On the table was an upside down pot and a duck tap dancing on it. The circus owner was so impressed that he offered to buy the duck from its owner.

After some wheeling and dealing they settled for $10,000 for the duck and the pot.

Three days later the circus owner runs back to the diner in anger, “Your duck is a rip-off! I put him on the pot before a whole audience and he didn’t dance a single step!”

“So?” asked the ducks’ former owner, “did you remember to light the candle under the pot?”


Boy Scouts from the city were on a camping trip. The mosquitoes were so fierce, the boys had to hide under their blankets to avoid being bitten.
Then one of them saw some lightning bugs and said to his friends, “We might as well give up. They are coming after us with flashlights!”


In the US, 45,000 hamburgers are eaten every minute. ***And that’s just at Michael Moore’s house.

If you want an easy way to lower your blood pressure, drink a cup of hot cocoa. It turns out that cocoa — not tea — can lower blood pressure as well as medication designed to control hypertension.  ***Be sure to check with your doctor before beginning any chocolate or cocoa regimen.



Who was the first person to look at a cow and say, “I think I’ll squeeze these dangly things here, and drink whatever comes out?”

Why do toasters always have a setting that burns the toast to a horrible crisp which no decent human being would eat?

Why is there a light in the fridge and not in the freezer?

If Jimmy cracks corn and no one cares, why is there a song about him?

If the professor on Gilligan’s Island can make a radio out of coconut, why can’t he fix a hole in a boat?



Marlene Wyatt went to a second-hand store in Arkansas to buy a Halloween costume. What she found, wasn’t a costume – but the very prom dress she herself made 33 years ago. She says when she spotted the dress her thoughts went from “This material looks familiar” to “Surely not” and finally “That’s my dress!” Wyatt sewed the white double-knit polyester dress when she was in high school. The store’s owner doesn’t remember where she got the dress, which she had labeled “Way Retro” in her inventory.  ***MARLAR: “Way retro”… that sounds scary enough to BE a Halloween costume!



They were looking for A Lion,
He came as a Lamb,
and they missed Him.

They were looking for a Warrior,
He came as a Peace maker,
and they missed Him.

They were looking for a King,
He came as a Servant,
and they missed Him.

They were looking for Liberation from Rome,
He submitted to the Roman cross,
and they missed Him.

They were looking for a fit to their mold,
He was the mold maker,
and they missed Him.

What are you looking for?
Lion? Warrior? King? Liberator?
What are you looking for?

They were looking for their temporal needs to be met,
He came to meet their eternal need,
and they missed Him.

He came as a Lamb to be sacrificed for your sin.
Will you miss Him?

He came to make peace between God and man.
Will you miss Him?

He came to model servanthood for all mankind.
Will you miss Him?

He came that we might have true Liberty.
Will you miss Him?

He came to give you eternal life.
Will you miss Him?

When we submit to the lamb we will meet the Lion.
Join with the Peacemaker and we will meet the Warrior.
Work with the Servant and we will meet the King.
Walk with the Submitted and we will meet the Liberator.
Concern ourselves with the Eternal and we will have the temporal.

If Jesus is not fitting into the mold you have then come to the mold maker and get a new one. Submit to His plan for your life and you will see the eternal need met first then all the other things you have need of will be taken care of as well.



A man who has friends must himself be friendly. —Proverbs 18:24

Our daughter Melissa had many friends during her high school days. One of her best friends was Katie. After Melissa’s death in a car accident, Katie told us how they had become friends.

Katie was the new girl in school in fifth grade, having transferred from California. She felt alone and awkward and out of place—until one day early in her first year. That’s when Melissa noticed her sitting alone on the bus.

Mell got up from her seat, sat down next to Katie, and started asking questions. They sat next to each other every day from then on and became inseparable friends for the next 7 years.

Our world has so many people who need just one act of love to change their lives. These people may not think they fit in, or they may be facing turmoil that makes them feel all alone. Sometimes all we need to do is extend a hand, offer a smile, or speak a word of encouragement. As believers, we know and experience the love of God (1 John 3:16), so we are especially able to reach out to people and share that love.

There are enough people to go around so that everyone can have friends. Let’s take the initiative to make sure no one is left out. —Dave Branon

I went outside to find a friend
But could not find one there;
I went outside to be a friend,
And friends were everywhere! —Payne

When you see someone in need, be a friend in deed.



Did you know that the kind of Halloween candy you give out is a reflection onto yourself? It is true, here is a few of the different personality traits related to your candy.

  • Loose Change — These people tend to be procrastinators. The fact they answer the door instead of pretending not to be there for trick-or-treaters is a sign of their genuine interest in people and loyalty to friends.

  • Candy Corn, Orange Colored Marshmallow, Puff “Peanuts,” etc. — You know how to pinch every last penny out of a dollar. You prefer spending your money on you, not someone you will never see again.

  • M&M’s/Snickers/Milky Way — Right off the top, you’re cool. Quality over quantity is the name of the game with you. You love a great party, are conscious and considerate of others. Likely to be a natural leader. Positive and upbeat on the outside even if your innards are tied in knots.

  • Skittles/Reese’s Pieces — You’re up on trends and fashion. You know what’s hot and what’s not. If older than 35, very likely to have children at home. A little different than the average bear but in a quirky way. You often feel out of place but you cover it well and no one has ever noticed.

  • Other name brand candy — You like to mix things up a bit. You hate surprises — but love to surprise others. Most likely, you bought a candy that you happen to enjoy rather than a candy that’s popular with kids. This group is the most likely to be overweight.



(From Children’s Safety Zone)


  • Carry a flashlight.

  • Walk, don’t run.

  • Stay on sidewalks.

  • Obey traffic signals.

  • Stay in familiar neighborhoods.

  • Don’t cut across yards or driveways.

  • Wear a watch you can read in the dark.

  • Make sure costumes don’t drag on the ground.

  • Shoes should fit (even if they don’t go with your costume).

  • Avoid wearing masks while walking from house to house.

  • Carry only flexible knives, swords or other props. (If no sidewalk) walk on the left side of the road facing traffic.

  • Wear clothing with reflective markings or tape.

  • Approach only houses that are lit.

  • Stay away from and don’t pet animals you don’t know.


  • Make your child eat dinner before setting out.

  • Children should carry quarters so they can call home.

  • Ideally, young children of any age should be accompanied by an adult.

  • If your children go on their own, be sure they wear a watch, preferably one that can be read in the dark.

  • If you buy a costume, look for one made of flame-retardant material.

  • Older children should know where to reach you and when to be home.

  • You should know where they’re going.

  • Although tampering is rare, tell children to bring the candy home to be inspected before consuming anything.

  • Look at the wrapping carefully and toss out anything that looks suspect.


  • Make sure your yard is clear of such things as ladders, hoses, dog leashes and flower pots that can trip the young ones.

  • Pets get frightened on Halloween. Put them up to protect them from cars or inadvertently biting a trick-or-treater.

  • Battery powered jack o’lantern candles are preferable to a real flame.

  • If you do use candles, place the pumpkin well away from where trick-or-treaters will be walking or standing.

  • Make sure paper or cloth yard decorations won’t be blown into a flaming candle.

  • Healthy food alternatives for trick-or-treaters include packages of low-fat crackers with cheese or peanut butter filling, single-serve boxes of cereal, packaged fruit rolls, mini boxes of raisins and single-serve packets of low-fat popcorn that can be microwaved later.

  • Non-food treats: plastic rings, pencils, stickers, erasers, coins.


  • Go slow, slow, slow all evening. (Adult Halloween partiers should have a designated driver.)



  • Trick-or-Treating: Shouldn’t this be seen today as a violation of federal RICO [racketeering] statutes?  While some big guys say you should pay them to protect your place of business or risk your business having “accidents” – trick or treating is asking for candy, otherwise you’re going to get toilet-papered or pumpkin’d.  Heck, they even say it right up front when they ring the bell.  No treat?  You get a trick instead.  The only thing keeping the racketeering laws from being enforced is that, for the most part, all of the perpetrators are juveniles, and thus have the civil right to thumb their noses at the law and be back on the street before the candy runs out.

  • Screaming: The scariest thing about Halloween these days is that you’re not allowed to offend or scare anyone. And if someone scares you, you can’t scream. In some communities, any auditory emissions over 75 decibels are a zoning violation punishable by a fine and/or jail term. Whether you can react instead with a sullen but non-denominational moment of silence will be considered later this term by the Supreme Court. Until then, do so at your own risk.



Just over 67 percent of trick-or-treaters are the 12-to 17-year-olds. That’s to be expected. But according to this year’s Shopping in America Halloween Survey, the second largest age group of trick-or-treaters is the 75 and up senior citizen crowd!  ***MARLAR: Here are a few signs that you might be a little too old to do the Halloween thing:

  • You get winded from knocking on the door

  • You have to have another kid chew the candy for you

  • You ask for high fiber candy only

  • When someone drops a candy bar in your bag, you lose your balance and fall over.

  • People say, “Great Boris Karloff Mask” and you’re not even wearing a mask.

  • When the door opens you yell, “Trick or…..” and can’t remember the rest.

  • You’re the only Power Ranger in the neighborhood with a walker.



When selecting treats to pass out at the homestead, avoid non-nutritious candies and gums. Instead offer celery and blue cheese sauce platters. While the neighborhood rugrats may loathe you, you’ll undoubtedly be a hit with the local dental hygienist (Quick note: House windows should be securely boarded before attempting).


  • Spinach flavored Rice Cakes

  • Teeth removing Taffy

  • Metamucil in a straw

  • Caramel Covered Zucchini

  • Hot steaming bowl of pumpkin innards

  • Chocolate Covered Prunes

  • A Handful of Red Man

  • Colored Crisco on a Stick


  • The scariest thing about Halloween is that kids don’t need to buy anything special for it. They already have the weird clothes, the black lipstick, and black nail polish.

  • I’ve had numerous emails and calls asking why I haven’t given my own opinion about Halloween.  So let me quickly let you know what I think about it all.  I don’t believe in Halloween, but I do believe in free candy.

  • Susan just called and said that her son Michael went trick-or-treating last year dressed as a Chicago Cubs baseball player. People gave him candy that was so hard he broke his teeth – so this year he’s going out as one of the Rockford Ice Hogs hockey players.


Try one of these tips from Cheryl Stoughton of Pumpkin Masters to keep your pumpkin fresh for up to seven days indoors and out:

  1. Spray the carved area with water, cover the entire pumpkin in plastic wrap, and store it in your fridge or basement throughout the day or when not on display.

  2. Give your pumpkin a bath. Submerge it in a filled sink for up to eight hours. “Check on it periodically to make sure it isn’t getting too soft,” says Stoughton. “If you leave it in too long, it can split.”

  3. Keep the carved edges fresh by sealing in moisture with a think layer of petroleum jelly.

When it comes to candy, Halloween smokes Easter, Valentine’s Day and Mother’s Day. According to the National Confectioners Association, more sweets are sold in the weeks leading up to the Halloween than any other time of year. Last year Americans polished off more than $2-billion in Halloween candy! The top five Halloween candies are, according to the National Confectioners Association:

  • Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups

  • Snickers

  • Hershey’s

  • M&M’s

  • Kit Kat

According to eCandy.com, 90 percent of parents admit to sneaking goodies from their kids’ Halloween bags. Parents favorite treats to sneak are snack-size chocolate bars (70 percent), candy-coated chocolate pieces (40 percent), caramels (37 percent) and gum (26 percent). The least favorite? Licorice (18 percent).

About 65 percent of American candy brands have been around for more than 50 years. The oldest Halloween treat is candy corn, which has been filling trick-or-treat bags since the 1880s. Here are some “golden oldies” still making kids smile:

  • Tootsie Rolls, 1896

  • Hershey Bars, 1900

  • Milky Way Bar, 1923

  • Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, 1928

  • Snickers, 1930

  • Starburst Fruit Chews, 1960

  • Skittles, 1981


When a guy hears you talking about someone’s personal business, you can bet he’s wondering what you tell people about him when he’s not around. “Even though he’s not the one being gossiped about, he still feels a bit betrayed,” says Warren Farrell, PhD, author of “Why Men Are the Way They Are.” “It makes him doubt how much he can trust you.”  It’s probably best to follow Proverbs 20:19 on this one.  “Whoever goes about slandering reveals secrets; therefore do not associate with a simple babbler.”

Here’s a great reason to listen to the radio. An hour of TV shortens your life by 22 minutes. Yes, we bet you never thought your TV could kill you but a recent study concludes that for every hour you watch, your life span is shortened by 22 minutes. That means gluing your eyes to the tube is about as dangerous as smoking or obesity, say the study scientists. “But while smoking rates are declining, watching TV is not,” says Lennert Veerman, a researcher in the Australian study. Of course, the real danger from TV is that it creates chubby, junk food snacking couch potatoes, whose only exercise is walking to the kitchen for more high fat treats or the bathroom. And experts agree that a sedentary lifestyle is linked to heart disease, obesity, diabetes and other health woes. The good news is that while watching TV for an hour knocks off 22 minutes of life, experts also say working out for 15 minutes a day adds on a whopping three years.  ***So keep listening to (STATION)… we’re better for your health than TV!

If you travel by air with children you might find this interesting.  When parents think of the risks of flying, they usually think of turbulence, emergency landings or horrific crashes. Hot coffee probably doesn’t top the list. But a new study finds that, when children are injured on airlines, they’re most likely to get hurt the same ways they do on the ground. The top source of injury is burns from hot drinks. That accounted for 39 percent of injuries. Other top injuries included children being hurt when tripping and falling, or hit when objects fell out of overhead bins or when laptops slid off tray tables.  http://n.pr/2e7rsrp

A sleep expert at Harvard Medical School thinks she knows what your dog is dreaming about — and it’s probably you. Dr. Deirdre Barrett has spent years studying sleep behavior in humans. Based on her work with people, she said it is likely dogs dream about their everyday experiences, just like humans. Which means when your dog’s day is over it could be dreaming about you.


Since today is Halloween, I’d like to begin by asking you what you think is scarier. Hoping you have enough candy for Halloween, running out of candy on Halloween, or running out of candy for the third time and Halloween is still a few hours away?


Marie Asner has been reviewing films for over 30 years. Her outlets include radio, print and Internet. For more in-depth movie reviews of the following films, visit www.Tollbooth.org. Ratings from 1 (Low) to 5 (High).

OCTOBER 28, 2016…

The Eagle Huntress—Here is a beautifully filmed documentary (true story) of a young girl in Mongolia who wants to become an eagle trainer/hunter. This is something only men of that area have done for generations, or even centuries. How to catch a baby bird, how to become friends with the wild creature—all this is shown. However, she must go against tradition. “The Eagle Huntress” is rated PG 13. Rating of 3 for fans of birds.

Inferno—Tom Hanks, fresh off “Scully,” now takes on the role of Robert Langdon in Dan Brown’s novel concerning deciphering clues from “Dante’s Inferno.” Of course, there is a villain to stop him, and Felicity Jones is there as Hanks’ partner in the search.  “Inferno” is rated PG 13. Rating of 2 for fans of Dan Brown’s works.

Rings—Oh, yes, Halloween must be near. You thought the video tapes were gone? Ha. It is back cursing anyone who watches it and this includes Alex Roe and Matilda Lutz. “Rings” is rated R. No rating.

NOVEMBER 04, 2016…

Bleed  For This is the story of a boxer, who suffered a near fatal injury in an accident and goes back into the ring. Stars Miles Teller.

Doctor Strange is adapted from a comic book and has Benedict Cumberbatch in the title role.

Hacksaw Ridge with Andrew Garfield (former Spider-Man) is based on the true story of a conscientious objector in WWII. Mel Gibson directs.

Loving is a true story about the romance between a white man (Joel Edgerton) and a back woman (Ruth Negga).

Trolls is an animated film on the lives of the little troll dolls. Remember them? One of the voices is Justin Timberlake.

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Darren Marlar credits all non-original material to the author whenever possible. All other material is original, used with permission, or author unknown. We welcome all comments, questions, and suggestions. Darren can be reached via his website at www.DarrenMarlar.com.