LAKE STEVENS — Mr. Bone Jangles is the hottest guy in town.
The 12-foot skeleton with animated LCD eyes is also the coolest Halloween decoration in the nation.
What’s up with that?
Jess Thomas paid about $300 for the 85-pound box of plastic bones at Home Depot in June.
“They’re really hard to get your hands on. I’ve been trying to get one for a couple years,” she said.
The skeleton has been on display since June in her yard on busy 20th Street NE, not far from the Chicken Drive-In and City Hall.
Mr. Bone Jangles is not some seasonal decoration that gets dismembered and boxed up. He was Uncle Sam for the Fourth of July. For back-to-school, he had a chalkboard and a giant pencil.
“People stop by taking pictures of him and with him all the time,” Thomas said.
Stardom is in this skeleton’s blood, you might say.
People have been obsessed with this supersized skeleton, nicknamed Skelly by fans, since its debut in 2020 by Home Depot.
Skelly lit up TikTok and memes. On “12-foot Skeleton Owners” Facebook groups, people bond over these bad boys and offer tips for securing and clothing Skelly.
He wears a 5XL.
For flesh beings, there are “Proud Parent of a 12-foot Skeleton” T-shirts to wear. For real. Thomas has one.
Some people pay double or drive hundreds of miles for a Skelly.
“We camped out at our local Home Depot and showed up every morning at 5 am for a week. After 3 years of trying, we finally have a big baby boy,” a post says.
The box of body parts is too big to fit in some cars, so buyers dump the bones in their trunks.
Assembly is required. Like that old song goes: The head bone’s connected to the neck bone, the heel bone’s connected to the foot bone.
On eBay, some 12-footers sell for $750.
Home Depot online on Tuesday showed a limited number of the sought-after skeletons priced $299 were available for store pickup after Oct. 26 or for home delivery by Nov. 16.
Why stop there?
Lowe’s rolled out an animatronic 12-foot mummy for $348. Home Depot has a 12-foot hovering witch for $299 that hasn’t flown off all the store shelves. Yet.
There’s no end to Skelly creativity.
He has been dressed as a woman, with pumpkin bosoms.
He stands on roofs, by pools and in living rooms with high ceilings.
Push a button on his pelvis to light up his eyes that appear to move and blink.
And what a pelvis.
“Pelvis Presley,” a Memphis owner named their skeleton.
Thomas asked Lake Stevens Facebook friends to vote on the name. Mr. Bone Jangles won by a landslide.
The scantily clad skeleton gets a lot of likes and comments.
“It’s not very easy to dress,” Thomas said. “His arms come off so you can put a shirt on him and put the arms back on.”
The legs are staked in the ground. A neighbor made Mr. Bone Jangles a pair of swimming trunks with Velcro sides to slip on to go with his inflatable shark water wings and “Happy AquaFest” sign.
That led to the only vandalism, so far. He was TP’ed during the town’s summer festival.
“It was by some of my employees,” said Thomas, a general manager for Buzz Inn Steakhouse.
Mr. Bone Jangles is chained to a tree, for his own safety.
Owning a 12-foot skeleton is an obligation.
“My 15-year-old daughter thinks it’s very embarrassing. Everyone is like, ‘That’s your house,’” she said. “I get messages: ‘Can’t wait to see what he’s going to wear next.’ It’s kind of a bit of pressure, actually.”
Andrea Brown: 425-339-3443; firstname.lastname@example.org; Twitter: @reporterbrown.
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