We kid you not: Some parents have a killer sense of humor.
Moms and dads in Alabama are paying $30 a pop to have a man dress up in creepy costumes to terrify their children.
Brantley Gerhardt, 32, has been making serious cash since he began his bizarre side hustle partway through last year, saying he has “probably met 20,000 families” since then.
The Pell City resident has been traveling across the entirety of Alabama frightening kids, as parents proffer positive reviews of his spooky services.
“I was all over [the state last year],” Gerhardt told AL.com in an interview published Thursday. “I’d spend a night in Anniston and I’d probably hit 20 houses. Then I’d spend the next night in Jacksonville and hit another 20.”
Gerhardt says the idea to creep out kids initially came to him at the beginning of the pandemic, as he was hoping to distract youngsters from the deadly outbreak.
“I told [my wife], ‘I wanna buy a Grinch costume and I just wanna creep around town. I’m going to creep around Walmart,’” he said. “COVID is here and I just want children to step away from that world.”
Gerhardt — who works as a farmer — ordered a costume of the Dr. Seuss character online and began dressing up and loitering around stores in his spare time.
“I’d spend like 10 minutes bebopping around the aisles of the grocery store, kids taking pictures, and then I’d just go back in my car and get on with my day,” he explained.
Gerhardt realized he could monetize his strange new hobby when a man randomly approached him and asked if he could pay him $20 to scare his child.
“It started with just pop-ins. It would be a family Christmas party, and everyone would be at the table,” he said. “Next thing you know, the Grinch would pop out.
Gerhardt now has a number of costumes in rotation. In March and April, he dressed up as the Easter Bunny. Now, with Oct. 31 fast approaching, he’s transformed into “Halloween” serial killer Michael Myers.
He’s even been booked in dozens of photo shoots with children while wearing the killer character’s trademark mask.
“I probably booked today 40 photo sessions, probably 10 of those are just grown adults, and they just want to have fun and forget about the world,” he said.
Parents have not explained the appeal of having grown-up Gerhardt petrify their offspring, but perhaps it’s because kids are becoming increasingly harder to scare.
A 2019 survey revealed the average American watches their first horror film at age 10, so they may now need a real-life villain to give them a proper fright.