Pillow cases bulging, practically bursting at the seams from the mounds and masses of candy I had collected "trick or treating"; my memories of Halloween drip with the breathless anticipation that seized me the moment I headed out the door, my scratchy Spiderman mask held against my face by one of those flimsy elastic strands!
The entire process, the chill, the dark, the unfamiliar doors, the outstretched hands, the tumbling chunks of treasure, the colorful sorting, the self-imposed rationing, was sheer delight!
Like the most fervent "trick or treaters", I scoffed at the darkened houses of the horrible Halloween scrooges and sneered at the grinches, who cheerfully handed out crummy apples and pennies! When climbing the steps of a well-decorated house, owned by an obvious Halloween enthusiast, I steeled my nerves for the inevitable case of the creeps that would infect me.
It was riotous fun!
I've always wanted to keep the Halloween traditions alive, carving a pumpkin, giving out candy and making young "trick or treaters" squirm, by wearing a mask.
As far as I can tell, I'm doing everything right! Yet, lately, Halloween has become a harrowing ordeal.
As fate would have it, one of the most ardent Halloween scrooges sleeps beside me, while her accomplice sleeps down the hall!
As soon as I buy the candy, their self-proclaimed, giggle-infested mission is to locate and ruthlessly raid the stash. What is that about? Surely, they've seen candy bars before!
Last night, while relaxing in front of the television, Susan happened to watch a commercial for peanut butter cups. It apparently triggered a sudden and uncontrollable compulsion to ingest one. Not only did she casually inform me I had peanut butter cups in my Halloween stash, she raced to the room where I kept it, determined to eat her fill!
As I got up to prevent the transgression, Tristan jumped on my back, trying ro restrain me. By the time I managed to claw my way to the room, the door was locked! Tristan continued to wrestle and restrain me, shouting updates to his mother, urging her to quickly eat as many as she could. By the time I got the door unlocked, Susan had gobbled her way through three, possibly four, packs of peanut butter cups! It was a frightfully ghoulish sight, with torn candy wrappers strewn everywhere and the woman of my dreams, sitting on the floor, feverishly ripping another pack open, as her frantically chomping jaws attempted, in vain, to ease the strain against her bulging cheeks.
At this rate, I'll be lucky to have empty wrappers to hand out to "trick or treaters"!
Not only do Susan and Tristan raid my candy stash, they scold me for handing out too much candy! They snarl and snap as they demand, "Why do you give out so much?" I'm not exagerrating; they're nasty about it!
Granted, I scoop liberally, but to hear the "ooo's" and "aah's" of the children, brings me back to the highlights of my own Halloweens.
My Halloween grinches eat the candy before I can give it out. They tell me I give out too much candy and they refuse to go to the door to hand out candy themselves! They grumble about the age of the taller "trick or treaters" and suspect certain "trick or treaters" are returning to our door more than once.
Who are these people? Isn't there supposed to be some vague shred of genetic similarity?
I'm amazed that, in this day and age, people still have enough faith in society to allow their children to knock on strangers' doors and eat goodies strangers give them. I can't let these people down and, in the name of "how it used to be", I will continue to battle the forces of, let's face it, gluttony.
There's nothing spookier than this pair, at this time of year. I should carve Susan and Tristan's likenesses into the pumpkins we place on our stoop! Of course, then, people would be far too afraid to even approach our house. Besides, fewer "trick or treaters" would play right into their hands and I can already hear them snorting and grunting, excitedly, "More candy for us!"