They say the house has eyes, which isn’t a surprise, as any eight year old could tell you. They say a baseball hit too hard, always ends up in that yard, and I’ve surely lost a few. I once dared my friend Billy, who thought I was silly and didn’t have a clue, to go ring the bell, and then come back and tell if all the tales were true. When he returned unhurt and unburned right then I learned that sometimes it’s not the house that is haunted but you.
This is the first Halloween in something like a decade in which I’ve not watched The Crow on Devil’s Night and The Rocky Horror Picture Show on All Hallows Eve itself. What with my double-gimpédness and various other responsibilities, I had to forgo the pleasure.
I did, however, get to hand out candy for the first time in about a decade as well. I estimated fairly well, based on the number of goblins that my neighbor had last year. I have perhaps 20 Kit Kats left. It was fun to sit out on the porch and encourage the littlest ones to say “Trick or Treat” and give the older kids without costumes shit for not having costumes. I made paper cranes for the adults, and it was good to pass the time folding in between groups of goblins. The mothers were all tickled to get them.
The Pumpkin Tide
I saw thousands of pumpkins last night
come floating in on the tide,
bumping up against the rocks and
rolling up on the beaches;
it must be Halloween in the sea.
–Richard Brautigan, 1968
I carved on Sunday with some friends. Last minute planning resulted in a lack of pumpkin, but carving watermelons was just as fun, and ultimately more effective on display, when carved and lit appropriately. Still my favorite holiday, even as the flavor changes with age.