Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Things I Miss About Halloween

We rarely get children at the door on All Hallow's Eve anymore. The packs of roaming vampires, ghosts, witches, and pillowcase-toting princesses vanished along with the era of homemade popcorn balls and plastic Wonder Woman masks, I guess. I miss them...the toddlers struggling to stay upright with their jack-o-lantern buckets while Mom waited at the end of the walk; the off-key, hopeful chorus of "Trick-or-Treat!" and an occasional giggled, "Smell my feet!" And the "too big for this anymore, but I have to drag my little sister around" teens in their makeshift costumes.They acted aloof until the candy bowl came out...and then they were little kids again, if only for one night. The last teens I had at my door were driving their own car down the street. They hopped out wearing jerseys and basketball shorts (hello--daytime clothing is not a costume), snatched double handfuls of candy and left me feeling like I'd been raided.

I dug up this ancient photo of (gulp) me and my puppy. Um, brother. Then I looked online at kid's costumes. Wow. Life ain't simple anymore. Watermelon fairy. Fallen angel (double comes with fishnets). Zomberina (tutu included). Prom Queen Corpse (no, I'm not kidding). Captain America "party suit". Zombie Skate Punk. Zombie Hunter. And my personal favorite, "Headless Boy".

Carved Jack-o-Lanterns

There is no feeling in the world like reaching into a pumpkin and scooping its brains out. Slimy seeds, sticky tendrils, and the earthy smell just screams Halloween. You cannot have a true jack-o-lantern experience with magic markers, store-bought stickers, or press-on Mr. Potato head features. (oh, the horror!) 

Real Vampires
In my day, vampires were fearsome, blood-sucking, creatures of the night. Not sexy, sparkly boyfriends. Although I admit that Brad Pitt and Tom Cruise had the sexy part down in Interview with the Vampire. But then they tore out your throat, so there you go. Vampires--evil.

Being a Kid
On Christmas, I am a kid. I have a stocking. It always contains a bit of nifty kid stuff. (Thanks to my husband, Santa) It's easy to feel like a child on Christmas.
Halloween, though, is different. That magical feel of being allowed to wander the neighborhood at dusk, jumping with fright at unexplained movements in the shadows, daring each other to approach the creepy scarecrow rocking in a front porch chair, screaming just for the excitement of it all. These things are lost to me an adult. (A grown woman in a french maid costume standing on the street corner...likely to get offered more than a bag of candy corn.)

So, I'll just carve my jack-o-lantern...and I'll leave the porch light on...and I'll have candy.
Maybe I'll get a visit from "Zombie Sock Monkey".
I seriously hope not.
I might have to scream.

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