Have I given you long enough to drool over my gorgeous new cover? You're probably saying, "Uh, yeah! Get a life." All right, I'll move along.
So today's Hallowe'en. I have to confess I've gone full circle about Hallowe'en. When I was little, we lived in the country. Kind of hard to go trick-or-treating when your neighbors live miles apart down dark gravel backroads and your father - the only one who has a drivers' license - is working. So yeah, no Halloween for little Leah.
When the boys were little, Gizmo Guy and I would go the whole route - sort of an overkill I suppose for my lack of Halloween childhood memories. We would set aside a day to go out to the farms and choose 'just the right pumpkins' and carve them up into scary images - cats and witches and fancy designs. We'd decorate the outside of the house with spider webs and ghosts and lights and you name it. I think our best year was when we stuffed an old sweatshirt of GG's, along with a pair of blue jeans, and the ubiquitous pumpkin head, then sat it in a rocking chair on our porch. Gizmo Guy put a speaker in its chest and hooked it up to his computer's voice program. When a little one least expected it, that dummy would start talking. Specifically to that child - about their costume so they knew it wasn't just a taped program. Scared the cr*p out of some of 'em.
I'd go all out and make Guitar Hero's costumes from scratch. For GH's first Halloween, I made him a car out of a cardboard box with pie plate wheels and a steering wheel. I had to lift it over him (I'd cut out the center) and he 'wore' it around the neighbourhood thanks to the straps I'd attached that hung it over his shoulders. I've made Power Ranger costumes, Grim Reaper cloaks, Batman outfits, Dragon outfits. You name it, I've sewed it. For Guitar Hero that is.
For Curly? No.
What? You gasp in horror. You went to all that trouble for one child and not your other? Yeah. Because when he was little, Curly was terrified of Hallowe'en costumes. I'm not just talking wide-eyed scared. Curly was curl-up-on-the-floor-in-a-ball-and-scream terrified. (Yeah, we often wondered if it was payback for that talking dummy on the porch trick.) Curly has always had an amazing imagination. I couldn't read bedtime stories to him either because those stories would become so real to him he'd be frightened all night. (Poor Gizmo Guy was really upset to discover he couldn't read Where the Wild Things Are to him the way he had with Guitar Hero. It would send Curly into crying fits.)
I'm not sure when Curly stopped being so afraid of Hallowe'en, but I think he was in his teens before he went out for the first time. AHA! Yes, I have made him a costume. I am REDEEMED. He went out as Legolas about 5 years ago with a bunch of his friends. I made him a cape from fabric that had a weave very similar to the one they wore in the Lord of the Rings Movie. I also supplied my elven leaf pin for it, along with a bow and arrow set I dug up from ... somewhere.
But nowadays, with the boys too old to go out, and not into it any more, we don't celebrate Hallowe'en. Plus Gizmo Guy was heard to grumble the other day "I don't know why we even celebrate Hallowe'en. It's just a big sales pitch for the candy companies." And you know what? I'm getting to the age when I'm starting to agree with him.
So for the five or six kids that come to my door tonight, there won't be cob webs or carefully carved pumpkins or spooky music or strange lights. There will be candy. But no spirit.
By the way, Gizmo Guy had a meeting with his boss yesterday who told him that today is an official government-recognized religious holiday for those who are practicing Wiccans or Samhains. Gizmo Guy tells me he suppressed a laugh at that last one. He asked me if that meant I had some special celebration I hadn't told him about. I said yes, and then winked at him. Okay, so maybe there'll be a little spirit. But none fit for kids. ;)