M. Giant's
Throwing stuff at the internet to see what sticks

Wednesday, October 30, 2002  

It’s that time of year when Trash and I buy way, way, way too much candy, and then end up having to eat it ourselves over the course of the next ten months. This year we’re going to be in particularly desperate shape since BuenaOnda moved to Chicago. We’ll probably just end up boxing the whole sticky mess and FedExing it to her next month. Especially if this year ends up being as much of a disappointment as last year was, trick-or-treater-wise.

Last year we had maybe a dozen trick-or-treaters, all told. It was quite the letdown. Not because I like kids, mind you, but because I like terrifying them. One of my favorite holiday traditions is to hide in the bushes wearing a hooded Death cloak and one of those “no-face” masks. Then I jump out and wave one of my grandfather’s rusty old farming implements at any small children who venture across our property line. Their reaction is worth having too much candy left over at the end of the night. It’s even worth having to hose down the sidewalk the next morning.

Last year we only had a dozen or so of the little freeloaders. I don’t know why. Every costumed beggar got as much candy as my girly fist would hold, and you’d think word of that kind of thing would get around. When I was a kid, there was like an unwritten Zagat’s guide for the houses with the most and the best candy. Apparently that’s not the case any more. Furthermore, Trash was all dressed up as Britney Spears, and her boobs are real. So it was a mystery.

“Maybe people think nobody’s home because the house is so dark,” Trash suggested.

Of course it was dark. It was supposed to be dark. I’d replaced every light bulb visible from the street with either red, green or black bulbs. The sidewalk was strewn with plastic bones, the bushes were layered with fake cobwebs, and the welcome mat screamed when people stepped on it. I was going for dark. At the same time, I couldn’t imagine what more I could do to the place to indicate that we were open for business.

See, a lot of the houses in the neighborhood where I grew up went all out for Halloween. One guy sat out on his front stoop all evening with his head inside an actual pumpkin shell. People would have scary sound-effects tapes, smoke machines, stuffed scarecrows in the front yard, trees festooned with human intestines, you name it. We all knew that people who went to that much trouble really had the goods in their candy bowls, too.

“What else am I supposed to do?” I asked Trash. “Set fire to the lawn?”

No sooner had I finished speaking than I realized I might be onto something. Can you imagine being six years old, wandering the neighborhood, and seeing a burning lawn through your crappy little plastic mask? You just know you’d be thinking, “Wow, that yard is on fire! I bet they have the best candy! Score!”

That’s why I’m planning on picking up a can of gasoline on the way home tomorrow night. My Halloween house will be the talk of the neighborhood for years to come. Even better, I won’t have to rake leaves this fall. Ha!

posted by M. Giant 3:25 PM 0 comments


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