Hump Day: Getting “lit” at long-ago Halloweens in more ways than one

Hump DayHump Day
By Brian Cormier
Wednesday, Oct. 17, 2012
Moncton Times & Transcript
Editorial section

If you can believe it, Halloween is two weeks from today! Where has October gone? The fall is my favourite season, but it sure is passing us by fast enough!

I’ve been invited to a Halloween party this year. Now, normally, I try to avoid Halloween parties at all costs. I’ll feign sickness, poverty, a death in the family… anything to get out of going to a wretched Halloween party.

Heck, one year I even got out of one party by telling the person who invited me that my caesarean was planned for that day, so I’d have to take a pass. They wished me good luck with the baby and I told them I’d invite them to the christening. Nice people, but not the brightest bulbs in the chandelier.

As a kid, I honestly can’t remember much of what I dressed up like to go out trick-or-treating. I do remember wearing those awful plastic masks with razor-like edges and the pinholes for eyes. My mother would always have to cut them larger for us to be able to see in front of us as we walked down the dark streets on Halloween night.

I’m sure I put on makeup at some point and likely dressed as a hobo or something. And, of course, I went door-to-door as a ghost at least once or twice. That, my friends, was a really easy costume to plan. Take one unwanted sheet, preferably white, and cut a couple of holes for eyes. Boo!

In later years, during one Halloween outing, my friends and I decided to dress up as post-nuclear apocalypse bunnies. Yeah, it wasn’t pretty. I remember I spray painted my hair (I had hair back then) a bright fluorescent orange.

Rumour has it that I may have had some Russian vodka. Actually, I’m pretty sure I did, since I received a thank-you note from the head of the Soviet Union afterwards telling me how grateful he was to me for bringing prosperity back to his people. The morning after the “Night of the Bunnies” was one of the few times I wished for the sweet peaceful sleep of death to befall me. My pillowcase was stained fluorescent orange and I was so hung over that I could have rented myself out as a “before” picture in an Alcoholics Anonymous advertising campaign.

A few years later, I came up with what I thought was a brilliant idea for a costume: a Christmas tree! I went to a fabric store to buy some green material that I wrapped around myself. Atop my head, I placed a plastic Christmas wreath and then proceeded to attach plastic tree decorations to the front of the costume. (I left the back of the costume decoration-free so that I could sit down.)

To top it all off, I wrapped a set of Christmas tree lights around myself and would plug myself in whenever I sat down at the party. Pretty neat, eh? Remembering the after-effects of the alcohol haze following the Night of the Bunnies party, I remained sober.

Actually, I was probably still nauseous from the previous Halloween. That one was a doozy! And I swear on all that is holy: to this day I’m unable to look at a can of fluorescent orange spray paint without getting a tinge of a headache. The memories of that night are ingrained into my brain that strongly!

My next Halloween venture was years and years later. I went as a Hawaiian drowning victim. Yeah, not the most sensitive choice in costumes, I know. I went to the decorations store and bought a halo, some colourful plastic leis and some netting. (My story was that I got caught up in a fisherman’s net.)

Yeah, I know. It was a terrible costume. I was afraid all evening that I’d meet someone who knew someone close to them who had drowned. Somehow, I don’t think they would have found my last-minute grasping-at-straws idea for a costume to be very funny. I think that was at least 15 years ago, if not longer.

Since then, I’ve just avoided Halloween parties altogether. I’m just not a Halloween person. I don’t get that some people decorate the entire house, inside and out. Oh, perhaps if you have kids, sure. But what if you have no kids? I dunno. It’s just not for me. To each his own, I guess.

So, now we come down to this year’s Halloween costume dilemma. I have no idea what to do. Perhaps go as Santa Claus? Not sure if that would be a good idea. I’d probably roast in the costume and end up as “Creepily Très Sweaty Santa Claus” who keeps asking everyone to put ice cubes down my pants. I think I’d scare the children.

Speaking of scaring the children, I definitely won’t be going as a clown. I’m not a fan of clowns. They scare me. They make me nervous. I don’t find them funny and I don’t find them particularly enjoyable. If I go to hell when I die, it will be full of clowns.

Maybe the Christmas tree could make an appearance again? It’s easy enough to do. There are plastic decorations out now that I could surely get my hands on since the stores are full of holiday stuff already. I like the simplicity of it. And besides, I still remember the looks on guests’ faces all those years ago when I would plug myself in after I sat down to chat.

This is getting complicated. Actually, that white sheet with a couple of eye holes is starting to look good right now. I think I need a Halloween costume intervention.

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