11/1/2009

Quite The Halloween

Uncle AndrewUncle Andrew
Filed under: @ 4:23 pm

That was one of the better Halloweens we’ve had around here to date. To begin with, the newest addition to our Halloween decor, a Shishka Bob Torture Box from Gore Galore, was a big hit. We decked out Fernando with a bloody chef’s apron and hat and set him and Shishka Bob out in their usual place on the front stoop. The video below doesn’t really do the tableau justice, but it gets the general idea across:

Secondly, this was easily the best year we’ve had for Trick-or-Treaters since we moved to this neighborhood in 2001. We must have had 15 or 20 total, of all ages, spread out over a four hour period. Sounds pretty meager, but when you consider that 15 kids is 15 times more than we had last year, it changes one’s perspective a bit. We actually had to refill the candy bowl this year….a real red-letter Halloween. As significant is the fact that every one of them was actually in some sort of costume, versus years past when teenage moochers have come to the door with nothing but a tennis racket as a prop (“I’m a tennis player!”. A tennis player in a raincoat, no less) or the year when half of our traffic was teenage girls whose entire getup consisted of a—*shudder*—pacifier. This year’s crowd was diverse, amiable and polite; one kid even shook my hand and congratulated me on our decorating acumen.

The third thing that made this year a topper was the presence of family and friends. Our usual m.o. for Halloween night is to order pizza and sit around eating junk food and watching horror movies. Since this was exactly what more than a few of our contemporaries were planning on doing at their own homes, we decided to band together and do it as a group. We managed to wade our way through Night of the Creeps, Return of the Living Dead (a classic schlock horror movie, and the origin of the meme of zombies craving brains), Blood: The Last Vampire, and then washed it all down with Shaun of the Dead. All the while gorging ourselves on pizza, candy, chips, coffee, soda and mixed drinks.

The nice thing about sitting down to a terrible movie or two with friends is that you can feel free to talk to each other throughout the film, occasionally dipping into the narrative to comment on some particularly egregious bit of acting or special effects. It’s a form of socialization that only really works when everyone is on the same page as to the overall horrbileness (horribility?) of the flick in question. We were all more or less compatibly aligned last night, conversing animatedly throughout Night of the Creeps and most of Blood: The Last Vampire while remaining companionably attentive through most of Return of the Living Dead and Shaun of the Dead.

All in all, this was probably what I would consider to be the absolutely ideal Halloween night. While I am perfectly happy to both attend and throw parties, I am not a big costume person. Nor am I the type to want to construct elaborately-themed soirees of mind-bending depth and scope, the way my sister Meg does on Halloween, Christmas, Flag Day, Yom Kippur, etc; I just don’t have the energy. And with the amount of dough I invest in these studio-quality Halloween props (in lieu of expending any creative energy myself), I don’t feel comfortable with the idea of either leaving them unattended or declining to put them out at all. So spending Halloween night in with a few friends and a giant bowl of Kit Kats and Almond Joys is just about as good as it gets. Many thanks to those who came over and helped to kill off some of our candy.


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