GREENVILLE, S.C. — Looking for a career with a bright future? Thanks to the recent surge in evil clown sightings, clown hunter is now one of the nation’s top 10 fastest growing occupations!
“There isn’t much call for vampire hunters these days, because blood drinkers have been virtually driven to extinction,” says industry analyst Maryanne Holtsgood. “But this year we’ve seen a tremendous uptick in the demand for clown hunters.”
Since August, the U.S. has been plagued by sightings of sinister clowns, some of whom try to lure children into the woods. Bewildered law enforcement officials have been unable to keep pace with the epidemic, and so communities have sought the help of hired guns, shelling out as much as $45,000 a pop to rid their town of a rubber-nose-wearing menace.
“A bounty hunter will walk into a mayor’s office toting a rainbow-colored wig ‘scalp’ and walk out with a suitcase stuffed with cash,” Holtsgood reveals. “It can be an incredibly lucrative career. Some are going into it full time, for others it’s a sideline, like being an Uber driver.”
But clown hunting is no barrel of laughs. Experts say it’s dangerous work that has already cost many overconfident wannabes their lives.
“Some good ol’ boy with an AR-15 and a couple of survival knives will decide to call himself a clown hunter, figuring, ‘How hard can it be to take down a clown?’ “ says veteran clown hunter Butch ‘ The Hammer‘ Kencaid. “He’ll go out there totally unprepared and end up with a face full of acid from a flower in a clown’s lapel, fatally stomped by oversized shoes or mowed down by a clown car.”
In many ways, clown hunting is more challenging than more traditional professions such as vampire hunting, demon hunting and witch hunting. That’s because there are many different types of evil clowns and each type must be battled with different techniques and weapons.
“One might be a demonic entity, the next the ghost of a trampled rodeo clown, another a disguised extraterrestrial, and yet another a homicidal maniac,” explains Greenville-based Kencaid. “And because others may just be high-spirited college kids pulling a prank, you can’t shoot first and ask questions after.”
Among the weapons an experienced clown hunter takes into the field are a shotgun loaded with rock salt, silver throwing knives and a water pistol loaded with holy water. But more important than the right weapons is the right training. Familiarity with specialized fight moves such as the “eyeball poke block” and the “cream pie duck,” both inspired by the Three Stooges, is essential.
In the past few months, two clown hunting academies have cropped up, one on the west coast, the other in Minnesota. Next year, several community colleges plan to offer certificate programs in clown hunting. Kencaid advise novices to apprentice under an experienced hunter for at least three months before taking on a solo gig.
“If you go after a clown unprepared, the joke will be on you,” he warns.
Copyright C. Michael Forsyth