There's a difference between "playing it safe" and "running scared".

(Caution: the scene below is intense and not for the squeamish.)

They had it all figured out. My boy, Justin, and his girlfriend. They got costumes. I saw Justin's. He was pretty excited about it. I could tell this was the real deal. Only a guy head over heels for a girl would dress up in a costume like that pink bunny get-up from A Christmas Story that Ralphie wore. Justin had a big, goofy grin on his face in his Stitch costume. A face that was poking out of Stitch's hoodie mouth.

The two of them were going to go trick-or-treating together this year. Justin wanted me to come along as chauffeur. I would be Batdad behind the wheel.

I was looking forward to it, because the boys had kinda kicked me to the curb in favor of going trick-or-treating by themselves last year. I won't have too many more opportunities like this before they grow out of it and decide that it's kid's stuff and they're too old for that kinda thing.

But then it all went sideways.

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There was word of clown sightings around the neighborhood, and in Stewartville and across southeast Minnesota. Menacing clowns. Because of the clown sightings - there was even word of one seen in Justin's girlfriend's neighborhood - they've changed their plans. They're not trick-or-treating this year anymore. It's not that they've outgrown it. They just don't want to risk running across the path of some clown.

So far, there's no credible proof of a clown in town hurting anyone - yet.

As a dad, I want my kids to be safe. It's great to hear my son, who normally throws caution to the wind, tell me he'd rather play it safe. I'm glad to hear him say it's better to be safe than sorry.

YouTube screen capture of Ben Affleck from Batman VS Superman: Dawn of Justice

It bothers me that it's pretty much a hoax. Right now there's no proof of any clowns doing anything. There's just word of clown sightings.

Maybe, since Ben Affleck is so pumped about being Batman, he could do something about this clown thing. He's Batman, after all. He specializes in that kinda thing.

Or maybe, our own Urban Legend can do something about it. Believe it or not there is national super-hero registry and we have our very own super-hero. He's not a vigilante or a crime-fighter. He's more of a role model. Which is kinda what we need right now. Somebody to set an example.