Laggies (that’s kinda scary, right? If you’re a quarter-life-crisis kinda gal – okay, I couldn’t think of a Halloween L-equivalent) and ghouls, it is my favourite day of the year. Possibly. Definitely in my top three.
The point is, I don’t know many other adults with some-to-many interests and commitments that love Halloween as much as I do. Modern Family‘s Claire Dunphy is my Halloween spirit animal.
Last year, I was out-Halloween’d by my neighbours. I live in a semi-detached house and our attached-half partners put my spirited-but-woefully-underprepared dollar-store decorations to shame. They had a fog machine. They had a life-size headless horseman. They had beer (unrelated but I envied that foresight, too).
Most of the trick-or-treaters bypassed my house because in comparison, it literally didn’t even look like we were home. I couldn’t even entice them by standing on the porch in my (adorable) Minion costume, waving candy in the air like I just didn’t care. My lovingly-carved pumpkins might as well have been landscaped rocks headlining my house number.
This year, I decided Halloween would be for my own enjoyment, trick-or-treaters be damned! (Although I did buy the same amount of candy. Shhh. It’ll get eaten… By someone.) I picked out pumpkins with my family from an actual pumpkin patch over Thanksgiving weekend. One had a nose – I swear – a perfect, appropriately-sized wart in the exact place it made sense. The other was a grayish, deep green colour and I’d just never seen one that shade before. I was eagerly awaiting the appropriate week-of time to carve, and had even put them further up my porch so as not to entice pumpkin smashers, when tragedy struck.
The fatass squirrel(s) on my street got peckish in the night. I awoke to find my beloved Pinocchio pumpkin had been chewed. Just once, but that was enough.
The nose was gone.
The bloody chubster had only eaten the nose, like it was protruding precisely to aid his delicious defacement. Over the next week, my gray-green pumpkin fell victim to the Hungry Hungry Hippos (so named because they’ll soon be as big if they keep this binge eating up) as well. Clearly, my carvings could not go ahead as planned. The drastic turn of events needed to be considered.
Pinocchio’s concept was easier to choose – I would tell the truth. I carved him with eyes wild, mouth agape in horror, and exaggerated his bite wounds. Grey’s Anatomy was harder. I could carve a face with the larger holes, but I wanted to stay true to its new nature. In the end, I went dug more holes and filled them with mice, which I later realize made it vaguely resemble a Swiss cheese under attack. It was perfect.
My pumpkins will proudly parade on my porch again this year, and I’m confident my glow-in-the-dark accessories will help lure trick-or-treaters.
But just in case, I brought every Halloween decoration I own to the front of the house. My neighbour’s house is still dark and without decoration.
Let’s hope they’re on vacation.