Sunday, November 2, 2008
Memories of Halloweens Past
Most years we get so many kids coming to our house on Halloween that we run out of candy. And we always buy a lot of candy. We’ve seen some great costumes, both store bought and handmade. Our favorite handmade costume was done by a young boy who had taken two shirts, folded them in half and buttoned them together so that he had one shirt on the left and the other on the right. He also wore mismatched shoes and socks. Plus he wore a tie.
“What are you supposed to be?” J asked him.
“A hard working man,” he replied.
“Well, this hard working man deserves some candy,” I said.
Another great handmade costume was a boy dressed as laundry. He had cut a hole in a plastic laundry basket and attached it to his waist. He added clothes around him. The best part was that he took an empty laundry detergent box, cut the top off, and used it as his Halloween bag. He was part of a group of kids who were followed by their wine drinking parents.
“He came up with this idea all by himself,” laundry boy’s mother kvelled. “It’s so amazing to see how creative he’s become and it’s so fascinating how he’s becoming his own person.” (Oy, Lady, he’s a basket of laundry. Don’t get carried away.)
The strangest store bought costume we saw this year was the orange prison uniform that came with handcuffs. We counted four, which meant there were probably many more. What made this odd for us was the fact that there is a maximum security Federal Penitentiary about a mile away from our house.
Besides fun costumes, the kids always have something interesting to say. Here are the few I remember:
“It was pleasure to meet you.” (I see somebody was taught some manners.)
“Do you own a dog?” When I replied that I didn’t own a dog and why did he ask, the little masked murderer said, “You seem like the kind of people who would own a dog.”
“I don’t like these,” the pintsized Power Ranger said, holding up the mini Milky Way bar I had tossed in his bag. “Give me something else.”
“I’m not JUST a princess, I’m a Voodoo Princess,” said the girl in the clown wig.
“Can I have some candy for my little brother? He couldn’t make it up the stairs. Why do you have so many stairs?” (A legitimate question since we do have a very steep stairway and many kids are out of breath by the time they reach our porch.)
“You know who invented Halloween? The Devil!” (The hell you say. Perhaps I shouldn’t corrupt you by giving you candy.)
“I’m afraid of cats. Can I see your cat?”
We’ve had the opportunity to watch many of the same kids come year after year. The one child we always notice, for obvious reasons, is the boy with no arms. He is Hispanic and he has fingers at the edges of his shoulders. He always wears a muscle shirt and has his bag attached to a string around his neck. He is probably around fourteen by now. He used to be shy, but has grown more self-assured every year. It’s sad that he lives his Halloween costume year round. Usually he arrives with a group of Hispanic kids, possibly fellow family members, but this year he came with a black boy his age who was dressed as a funky clown. In the unconscious manner of kids, the funky clown turned to the no arm boy and said, “Man are my arms tired!”