Image hosted by

Thursday, October 27, 2005

I have thoughts in me brain. Forgive them for rambl'n as I am a great big fat holiday person.

Especially Halloween, even though it isn’t a real holiday. Every holiday, every year, has to be celebrated. Maybe I think life is to full of stress and despair to not celebrate absolutely every little thing that brings a smile to your face – and so I do.
And with Halloween being the next holiday in line, that will be the one I will be talking about right now.

I remember almost every costume I have ever had. My mom made most of them; bless her heart because I asked to be some amazing things. I just thought it was so much fun to have one day that was okay for everyone to be out in public pretending to be something that they normally weren’t - A super hero, a witch with magic powers, a unicorn, anything.

Do you remember how much fun it was back when you were in elementary school? How exciting it was to see the first skeleton come out of the closet and hung in the classroom window? We all got to decorate our little desks and the teacher would play the scary sounds tape. Mrs. Cox even had us singing scary songs in music class: H-A-DOUBLE L-O-W-DOUBLE E-N SPELLS HALLOWEEN!... The leaves would blow around outside and creepy clouds would pile in over the horizon. It was an exciting time of the year. The season was changing, the trees were changing, even my outfits were changing from T-shirts to turtlenecks.

I even remember an extra bonus question on a quiz once that asked, “What is the meaning of dressing up on Halloween?” I knew the answer. I had just asked my dad that a few days before, so I wrote out a whole paragraph about how people used to dress up in costume to scare the demons and evil spirits away. The next day, I got my quiz back with a big red X through my answer, and a note from the teacher saying, “No Amy. It’s to have fun”.

Pfff. What did that teacher know anyway?

And trick-or-treating? It used to be safe! We could trick or treat from house to house with all our friends and no parents. There was nothing to worry about except for bullies trying to take our candy away. Only when we got home did we have mom look for razor blades in our Snickers bars because somebody somewhere had found one once.

How cool was that? The razor blades weren't cool of course, but the other stuff was.

Needless to say, every year I carved a pumpkin. And there was/is a big difference between pumpkins and jack-o-lanterns. Pumpkins are innocent, friendly, gentle reminders of autumn. Jack-o-lanterns have faces, which mean they had personalities – and they are evil, scary, and mean, and are a very necessary part of the whole Halloween thing.

All my jack-o-lanterns had scary faces. That’s just the way it was. I never understood those carved with funny faces because Halloween wasn’t for silly grins. Halloween was about horror movies and monsters, ghosts, goblins, zombies, vampires, witches, graveyards, spider webs, and howling wolves. That’s what I always thought anyway. And what's up with those pumpkins with painted on faces?? Oh nooo - you've got to slice their scalps off, dig your hand in there and ripped the cold guts out. Then you've got to scrap the sides and get all the stringies out. THEN, and only then, do you draw an outline of the face on the best side and start a-carving. There's a method to the madness, you know.

I also remember jack-o-lanterns lasting a lot longer than they do now. I know that’s hogwash, but it seems that I used to get a pumpkin at the begging of October, carve it somewhere around the middle of the month, and have it still intact by the 31st. And I never sprayed Lysol in them or did any of those tricks to make them last longer because they never needed it. Just seems now they don’t make ‘em like they used to…

For that reason, every year I have to restrain myself from buying my potential jack-o-lantern until the week OF Halloween - which is this week. If its too early and I happen to be the store with all the pumpkins out, I’ll avoid eye contact with them so I’m not tempted to buy one. Then, when the right week comes, I will spend an entire hour picking out the one I want, but not until I line up about 5 of them to see which one is the best. I learned how important the right one is by watching my dad. He used to have a face in mind and then go find the perfectly shaped pumpkin for it. I have always preferred to find the perfect pumpkin and then try and see what face it’s asking for. And I prefer the rounded pumpkins over the tall narrow ones. The round ones are more like the jack-o-lantern from the movie “Halloween”, which as we all know, is the all time most ultimate scary one.

So this week, I have come to realize that I still have not gotten myself that perfect pumpkin yet. It’s hard work, you know. They all look perfect in their orange blissfulness.

Last night, I realized also that I only have 5 days until Halloween. I actually wondered for the first time ever if it was worth buying a pumpkin at this late date. I told myself I should grow up and not bother with it this year. I have three plastic jack-o-lanterns in the windows that plug in, and one in my bathroom. I could get by with just those…

Then I slapped myself silly and snapped out of such deranged thoughts. Today I will go get a pumpkin after work.

If I haven’t scared you yet with the pumpkin thing – wait until you hear this:

If you still dress up for Halloween, about when do you start thinking about what to be?


August, I start thinking about my costume.

Every September I make my final decision and start collecting stuff for it. Then I figure out what Earl can be so we can match. THEN I start asking around to see who’s throwing the parties.

This year, I’m 34 – and yes, I have a costume planned (boy, are my future kids going to hate life). Unfortunately, the party situation looks very grim – no pun intended. However, that is why God made bars. Its not like it used be when we were 19-years old and suddenly found ourselves with nothing to do and no where to go – now we can at least celebrate All Hallows Eve with freaks at the bar.

We may very well end up at the little club down the street. It’s a great place to hang, as beer is all of about .75 cents a glass. Just like Cheers, everyone knows your name. Unlike Cheers, the jukebox is filled with AC/DC and Metallica. The crowd however, does not strike me as the festive holiday type and aside from the occasional cat ears or devil horns, I will, I fear, be the only one in costume.

That’s okay. It’s happened before. I’m a strong person, I can handle it.

Besides, my costume is appropriate for the bar – as I have chosen to be...

The St. Paulie Girl.

My friend from work used to be in theater and was also the St. Paulie Girl once for Halloween. She lent me the outfit that is very authentic looking being as she got it from her theater outfitters. Had we a party to go to, Earl would have either been Captain Morgan or a Viking. Seeing as we are barring it, he will simply be the handsome devil he is.

I doubt I'll look like that wench -

but I’ll take pictures.

And can I just say THANK YOU to Tim Burton for combining the two best holidays ever into one movie. I thought I had died and gone to heaven.