Sunday, October 31, 2010

Best 'witches' to the birthday ghoul

She arrived squalling in the dark and early hours of a Halloween morning, an absolute treat after a frightening and tricky delivery, our own tiny gremlin. Later that day, a boy dressed as the Flash gave her a kiss — through his face mask — before zooming off to trick-or-treat.
She has worn many costumes in the 19 (all too short) years since then: baby pumpkin, fairy-tale princess, pink Power Ranger, witch, Indian princess, police officer, Dorothy Gale, gangster moll and many more. She’s even been known to create a costume and make up out of boredom (see left).

She won a prize in a sci-fi convention costume contest one year for the Star Trek outfit we dressed her in — mostly because she was an awfully cute 4-year-old at the time. The grownups in their expensive “uniforms” were not amused.

Over the years, we developed a tradition of taking the birthday ghoul out to eat before going trick-or-treating; the whole family would wear costumes to whatever restaurant she chose. That came to an end the year I wore a Star Trek costume and everyone in the joint came by the table to make jokes. She absolutely refused to let me wear a Mr. Fantastic outfit a couple of years back, but that may have had more to do with the way my gut stretched the fabric.

I suppose there’s only so much humiliation a young woman will endure from her father.

For the last few years, she has wandered the neighborhoods of the Hammocks in Lynn Haven with her friends and has hauled home loads of candy — so we’re a little disappointed that she has finally decided she’s “too old” for trick-or-treating.

Looks like we’ll have to hit the after-Halloween sales on All Souls Day.

All this is to say that, no matter what outward outfit she wears or how many Halloweens she has seen, she’ll always be our little monster under the surface.

Happy Halloween!

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This is my Sunday 'Undercurrents' column for The News Herald.
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