Halloween was last Monday. Did you guys have a good time? Did you dress up?? Did you get lots of candy??? Do you want to give me all that candy????
Asking for a friend.
When I was a kid, man. I totally owned that candy thing. We’d grab our pillow cases (this was in the days before trick-or-treat bags were invented) and trudge through 3 feet of snow to get candy.
(Back then, it always snowed three feet the day before Halloween. Also, the houses were farther apart. A lot farther apart. Like, several miles. And they only gave out tiny candies, like tootsie rolls and dum-dums. Kids today, they don’t know how good they have it. (*grumblegrumbleTrunkorTreatgrumblegrumble*))
In this picture, I’m wearing a crayon costume. (My costume in 1st grade.) It was legit. I wish they made that costume for grown-ups.
When we couldn’t walk anymore because our feet had frozen into blocks of ice, we’d drag our corpses home, our pillowcases laden–laden, I say–with our hard-earned candy. The moment we walked in the door, Mom would be there with…the Bowl.
And do you know what she would do??
Do you know what she would do????
She would make us ALL pour our hard-earned candy into that bowl!
It was like having your arm torn off! But with more blood and tears!
And then, she would put that bowl of communal candy faaaaar out of reach, on top of the fridge.
OMGsh, it was the worst. I’m still getting a little teary-eyed, thinking about it.
We did get a couple pieces of candy a day. If we finished with all our homework, did our daily jobs, practiced our music (both instruments), and sewed dresses for our stepsisters’ ball, Mom let us grab a chair, reeeach to the top of the fridge, and fish around in that beautiful, beautiful treasure trove of a bowl.
Weirdly enough, the bowl of candy seemed to get lower and lower every day. A lot lower. We couldn’t figure out where all that candy was going to.
Around the second week of November, the bowl would mysteriously disappear.
ME: YOU WHAT???!?!?!
MOM: Wasn’t it awful, having that junk food around the house all day?
ME: No! It wasn’t awful! It was wonderful!!! I loved having that junk food around the house all day! I’m not even around the house all day! I’m at school! How could you throw it away???!?!?
MOM: If you keep complaining like this, I’m going to make you sing the Happy Song.
ME: But that was MY CANDY!!
MOM: When you start paying the light bill, we’ll talk about what’s yours around here.
And that was that.
You might wonder why I’m so against Communism. It’s because I LIVED IT EVERY YEAR AND IT WAS AWFUL.
Seriously. You kids have no idea.
Fast forward fifty years or so. My mom doesn’t do that anymore, because now we’re too old to go trick-or-treating. But she does have a huge party at the house, where everyone dresses up and eats chili and the nieces and nephews go out trick-or-treating, where the neighbors, of course, hand out donuts and full-sized candy-bars and some even hand out bags of candy (I am not making this up) and toothbrushes but only sometimes on the toothbrushes, because the kids somehow “miss” going to the neighborhood dentist’s house every year. But seriously, my mom’s neighborhood is Candyland.
The best part about this? They come back to the house after. Loaded with candy.
Some aunts like to spoil their nieces and nephews.
And some aunts expect their nieces and nephews to spoil them.
I’ll let you guess which aunt I am.
Hiiiii kiddssssss….whatja get????
Those kids are gettin’ wise.
After the great candy letting, we all sit down to watch a movie. I say “all”, but this year it was just me and my little sister, Emily. It’s a good thing too, because we were watching….this.
Have you seen this? You obviously haven’t, because in the past 50 years, you’ve gone outside. Trust me, this movie’s enough to make you go Headless Chicken the next time you see a bird.
It is absolutely freaky.
…Except for the first hour and a half (it felt like 5 hours) where the characters, dressed in fabulous ’60’s outfits, sit in various trendily-decorated locations, smoking real cool-like and talking for ages about stuff that no one cares about, like their ex-flame’s mother, the exact way to drive across town, and what the stock prices for bird cages in San Francisco are.
No one cares about your stupid boyfriend!
And then suddenly…
CAW CAW CAW CAW CAW CAW CAW CAW CAW!!!!
The audience is treated to horrific scenes of birds EATING PEOPLE!
Scenes that don’t even make sense! Like, they’re inside a schoolhouse, and they notice a whole lot of birds perching on the playground equipment. So you’d think, hm. Maybe we should stay inside for a while, since the birds have been attacking people.
NOPE. They send the kids OUTSIDE to go HOME.
Well of course they get massacred!
(You can watch the actual movie clip here, but I only suggest doing it if you don’t care about all the nightmares you’re gonna get.)
Like I said, it doesn’t make sense. The whole movie doesn’t make sense. It’s just like…horror donuts. There’s no nutritional value except for the parts where the birds eat everyone. It’s awful. And so, so wonderful. Emily was horrified. (She hasn’t seen it before.)
The next morning, we didn’t go running. We couldn’t.
Birds are out there, which is why I haven’t left my house in a week. I’m writing this from inside my couch. Hopefully my work understands why I haven’t shown up. There’s no way I’m going outside ever again.