My kids are going to be a ninja lord (whatever that is), Optimus Prime, and a witch for Halloween this year. I tried to steer them toward monsters and zombies, and almost succeeded in talking the Squirt into being a zombie pirate from Pirates of the Caribbean, but in the end they chickened out.
Turns out they still remember last year’s haunted house at the Academy of Okinawan Karate. I’ve been talking it up for the last few weeks, and they finally told me they don’t want to do it again. The Midget was brave last year, and even impressed a lot of people by dropping into a fighting stance every time a monster strayed too close. The Squirt emerged in tears, but only because his flip-flop fell off. Many other children their age walked out clutching their parents and crying in fear. I thought my boys would be up for it again, but no, they don’t want anything to do with it.
In fact, the Midget is having horrible flashbacks. For example, we went to Sam’s Club and saw they had all their Halloween decorations out:
Sam's Halloween displays
These were simple inflatable dioramas, with some movement and music, including the theme from Halloween. The Squirt and I rolled on by, and suddenly realized the Midget had fallen behind. He didn’t want to go anywhere near this thing, and despite all my attempts to explain to him this stuff is perfectly harmless, he freaked. So we went the long way around the store to get what we needed.
On the way back, the Squirt and I wanted to take another look. So we headed back, and I allowed the Midget to remain behind with the cart, about a hundred feet down the aisle. When I returned a few seconds later, this is what I found:
"It's a trap!"
One would think most dads would rush to console their child. Me? I whip out the camera so I can show off this little picture to his date on prom night. Yes, I will relish this picture.
Because it killed Halloween. I started to think maybe this would be the year to decorate the house. We went into one of those seasonal Halloween stores, and I got to looking at the crawling torso, the buckets of blood, the giant spiders, the motorized goblins, and the almost never-ending row of adult monster costumes, and I started drooling. Our porch is a perfect setup for hanging Halloween decorations, and it would be easy to turn it into a tunnel to funnel trick-or-treaters to the front door to scare the pants off ’em as they get their candy.
Unfortunately, if I set any of that stuff up, the Midget would never come home. Halloween dioramas flanked the vestibule of the Halloween store, and he didn’t even want to walk through it, almost giving up his costume privileges. Every store we go into, he looks well ahead for Halloween displays, and if they have them he won’t go near them. Even a spider sticker on the front door of a restaurant gave him pause, as he feared there were other bigger, scarier decorations on the inside.
So, alas, no decorations for Mike. No scary costume, either. I finally resigned myself to walking my ninja and my Transformer through a neighborhood filled with other wussy costumes like ballerinas, princesses, cowboys, cats, Power Rangers, super heroes, and clowns. (God I hate clowns. I want to punch them in the face. But I digress.) Maybe next year the Midget will come around, and I can talk the boys into joining me on the dark side. Together we can terrorize this neighborhood of weak-ass Halloween killjoys. Our home will be an object of horror, and we will get to keep all of our candy! WE WILL RULE HALLOWEEN WITH BLOOD-DRENCHED FISTS!! MUAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!
I digress again. As I was saying, I have accepted the fact that Halloween will probably suck. Again.
Then I had dinner with the folks who run my karate school. They’re looking for more volunteers. After determining we will probably not be bringing my kids to the school’s Halloween party this year, I jumped in. I have no idea what I’ll be yet, but I’m back, baby! I get to scare the hell out of child — er, I mean, I get to do my part putting the horror back in Halloween!
VICTORY IS MINE!
About Mike Oliveri
Mike Oliveri is a writer, martial artist, cigar aficionado, motorcyclist, and family man, but not necessarily in that order. He is currently hard at work on the werewolf noir series The Pack for Evileye Books.