October Surprise

So we got the call from Danielle, my sister-in-law, to help her hand out Halloween candy and drink wine.  Candy I am good with.  Like Bela Lugosi, I do not drink wine.  They moved into their home earlier in the year and this would be their first Halloween there.  I highly doubt I have ever had a Trick Or Treater come to my house ever.  My old house I rented in the Shores was one of two houses on a cul-de-sac where the homes were spaced so the walking/candy ratio were too varied to make it worth your while.  Even kids know this.

The doorbell would ring and Danielle would sprint to the door snatching a large bowl of candy from a nearby table.  Because of the distance between properties many of the kids arrived in caravans much like Trick Or Treating gypsies.  Trucks pulling flatbeds, sometimes ATVs with a smaller trailer, that would stop and deploy children like Skittle-seeking projectiles.  She would scream at them from the doorway to hurry up and “Never mind the driveway, just cut through the lawn.”  She would gush over the small children asking each one of them who they were and encouraging them to take as much candy as they wanted.  They made their choices wisely as if their lives were in the balance.

iron Men, Spider-Men, Hulks and princesses.  An occasional Batman.  Some ninjas.  Cartoon characters I don’t understand.  A few kids who probably should have retired three years ago but haven’t developed a sense of shame to override the desire for free candy.

Rule of thumb: If you wear a bra or shave, you probably should call it a childhood and move on.  if you do both, you should probably call a therapist so they can help you move on.

My favorites are always the ones dressed ridiculous for children.  The seven year-old dressed as Michael Myers (the serial killer, not the comedian).  The four year old girl as dead zombie bride.  My winner of the night was a two-year old Spider-Man leading his pregnant mother through the streets as he (or she… not really sure) screamed “CAN-DEE!” repeatedly.

I don’t believe in cutesy costumes for babies.  I like my Halloweens scary and in poor taste.  Nine year old girls dressed as pregnant Jerry Springer guests.  Pre-pubescent boys dressed as Alex DeLarge.  I have been trying to wear Natalie down on giving me carte blanche on the first three years of whatever children we have before they actually want to be things and save me the agony of having to look at my spawn dressed as a pumpkin.  Frankenstein or Mummy babies would be hysterical.

I have a theory that even when my children are older in the spirit of Halloween they should dress as two things: whatever they want to dress as and then the zombie version of it.

HYPOTHETICAL SIX YEAR OLD DAUGHTER RIPLEY: I think I want to be a princess this year.

JIM: Fine.  But it has to be a zombie princess.

RIPLEY: What about a ballerina?

JIM: Zombie ballerina.

RIPLEY: Wonder Woman.

JIM: Zombie Wonder Woman.

RIPLEY: How does Wonder Woman get turned into a zombie?  She’s Wonder Woman.  She’s an Amazon.  Nobody can get close enough to bite her.

JIM: Zombie Superman can.

RIPLEY: How does Superman become a zombie?

JIM: Not my problem.  Probably Zombie Lori Lemaris.

RIPLEY: Isn’t she a mermaid?

JIM: Zombie Mermaid.

RIPLEY: What about if I’m a Transformer like Optimus Prime.

JIM: Zombie Optimus Prime.

RIPLEY: He’s a robot!  That doesn’t even make sense.  It’s just stupid.

JIM: Stupid… or Zombie Stupid?

The only Halloween costumes I remember are Superman and Batman.  The ones with the plastic mask held together with a staple and cheapest rubber bands available in China.  The costume itself was made from something with slightly less quality than the plastic Walmart uses for their bags.  Somewhere around the sixth block the pant leg would tear and start flapping in the October night air.  I remember being so angry because across the chest were the words BATMAN is giant gaudy yellow letters and even as a kid I thought, “Batman doesn’t have the words BATMAN across his chest… criminals just know he’s Batman.”  Of course that didn’t stop little old ladies from asking me who I was.

I’m Batman, you old hag.  Don’t you know who Batman is?  Maybe I should make you a sign… oh yeah, someone idiot already put one across my chest.

The we would come home to unload out dumb plastic pumpkin heads (I later found out the smart kids used pillowcases… genius).  My mother would then make us dump out the candy and separate the stuff we wanted from the stuff we didn’t and then she would take the stuff we didn’t and stick into another bowl and hand it out to unsuspecting kids so not to waste the Snickers or get stuck with the cheap crap candy.

Enjoy your peppermint hard candy… suckers!

I am pretty sure if I had a costume like they make today when I was a kid, I would never take it off.  I am also pretty confident I would wear the Superman outfit with the cloth cape and padded under my normal clothes in the event some shit broke loose, I would be ready.  I am also pretty confident Natalie is not going to let me walk the neighborhood with our six month old strapped to my chest like Kuato from Total Recall.

It won’t stop me from trying.

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One thought on “October Surprise

  1. Go for it Jim! I vote yes on allowing you carte blanche on the first three Halloweens of the first child. Unfortunately, all subsequent children will need to be dressed in conjunction with their elder sibling.

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