I don’t understand it. I went trick-or-treating and all I got was a bag full of rocks.

Well! It’s Halloween! I’m writing this in advance so Halloween might be cancelled. See, we’re getting this Hurricane Sandy thing up here, it’s supposed to hit tomorrow. All the rain, all the winds, no power. It’s going to be cuckoo-bananas, apparently. I mocked Hurricane Irene before it came, and then so many people around here lost their homes and power and stuff and then I felt terrible so I’m not going to mock this one. I should be fine, though. I don’t know that I’ll lose power. And if I do, it should come back pretty quickly. My place is pretty good about power. I didn’t lose any power the last time we had a storm. (Wait, is this a Hurricane or a Tropical Storm? I don’t even know. I haven’t been paying attention. It’s been a long busy week.) So, anyway, last time I was all “HA HA HA WHERE WILL I LOOT” but this time I’m going to not mock because it ended up not-funny after all. But I’ll be fine, I’m sure. (But if I don’t have power, I want blogs to be READY. I am a PLANNER, you see.)

It’s a hurricane, I guess. Look at it, all red and menacing. RAWR.

Although, listen, people are FREAKING OUT. At the answering service, Saturday was INSANE. So many calls. “Will I lose my oxygen machine if the power goes out?” “Where can I buy a generator?” “Can I legally butcher and eat my children if I lose power for more than 2 days?” (One of these is not a true call. You can decide which one.) We all had PTSD at the end of our shifts. The call volume was off the charts. I’ve never seen anything like it. Apparently it was like that during Irene, too, but I was employed then so I didn’t see that. People are SO SCARED. It made me sad for them. I wanted to pat their heads and give them cookies.

Oh, well, now I want cookies. I WANT THESE COOKIES. These are delicious.

Anyway, so! It is Halloween. So let’s talk about HALLOWEENS PAST.

When I was a wee Amy, my parents weren’t all that into Halloween. This is because Dad considers Halloween begging. Dad is not into Halloween. “We have MORE THAN ENOUGH MONEY,” he would say to my mother. “We can BUY our children candy. They don’t need to GO TO PEOPLE’S HOMES and BEG them for it as if we are POVERTY-STRICKEN.” “Sigh sigh,” my mom would say. “That’s not the point of Halloween, dear.”

How my dad saw my brother and me (and all the other trick or treaters) on Halloween, apparently.

It was always very cold up north at Halloween, so we’d get costumes and then have to wear thermal underwear under them and winter jackets over them, and then unzip and show the people our costumes and shiveringly zip back up and run back to the car. We lived in the sticks. There weren’t many places you could trick or treat. You had to go one place, get back in the car, go to another, it took like HOURS. There was very little walking. You didn’t get much candy.

I was (why? I have no idea) a hobo for like three years running. I think because the costume was warm. Mom just put schmutz on my face and I wore Dad’s old clothes and we put a handkerchief on a stick and there. I AM A HOBO. No princesses for THIS little Amy, no no not me. I was BADASS things. Hobos. Hippies. Those cheap costumes you got that were all plastic at the Kmart. CLASSY BITCHES I WAS CLASSY.

We had a lot of these type of things. Your face always got all hot inside the mask and you smelled like plastic for like EVER after.

I don’t remember what Amy’s Brother was. I just remember he doesn’t like candy so mostly he would trade me for all the Tootsie Rolls. He used to like Tootsie Rolls. I hate those cussing things. They’re not chocolate. They PRETEND to be chocolate but they taste like dirt and paste and false taffy. Now he doesn’t even eat those. He hates sweets. I know, what’s wrong with this kid? (He’s not a kid. He’s in his mid-thirties. However, he’ll always be 5 to me. ALWAYS. Which is why it perplexes me that he’s a dad now. My baby brother has a baby! Huh. When did THAT happen? Oh, over three years ago now? Carry on, then.)


Mom would vet all of our candy. Homemade stuff? IN THE TRASH. (Unless it came from my grandmother. Hers were safe. Which was good, she always gave us homemade doughnuts. YUM. She makes excellent doughnuts.) Fruit? TRASH. (Because, razorblades. I was cool with that. I hate fruit. Give me fruit at Halloween, I will look at you sideways ALL YEAR LONG.) Some candy that wasn’t wrapped securely? TRASH TRASH TRASH. Then we could have the rest, but only a LITTLE, and only in TINY AMOUNTS, over the next few MONTHS. Sigh. Thanks for looking out for our health and teeth, Mom. I GUESS.


When I was in high school, my friends and I decided to go trick or treating because we wanted candy. So we did. We could drive. I think when you’re old enough to drive, you probably shouldn’t go begging for candy. People were NOT AMUSED. “You are too old for this!” they said. “GRUMBLE GRUMBLE WE WANT CANDY” we replied. (Also, one guy was on his porch pretending to be a scarecrow, and then he would come to life and attack you, and he TOTALLY GROPED US. That is NOT ALLOWED, sir. You can’t use Halloween as a cover to GROPE JAILBAIT-AGE GIRLS. Gah.)

Then in college, friend D. and I were so, so poor, and we wanted candy SO BADLY, so we went trick-or-treating in the WORST HOMEMADE COSTUMES EVER and people would NOT give us candy and were the MEANEST. “NO NO,” they said. “YOU DAMN COLLEGE KIDS. Candy is for CHILDREN. You are NOT ALLOWED.” Friend D. and I were very sad because we really wanted some candy. WE JUST WANTED SOME FREE CANDY YOU PEOPLE. You are SO MEAN.

Now I kind of ignore Halloween. I like the IDEA of Halloween, because I like scary, but no kids ever come to my house for candy so I’m not even buying any this year (and if we get the rain they say we’re going to, no kids are going to be able to trick or treat at ALL or they will get washed/blown away) and I’ll probably be working, anyway. And NO, I will NOT be dressing up. I haven’t dressed up since 1993. A lot of people wanted that night off from work so they could be with their kids or go to parties, and I’m ok with that. I don’t have family/kids. I’ll take one for the team. (I’d love to see The Nephew trick or treat, though. I bet that would make me the happiest. That kid’s got more joy in his little finger than I have in my whole body. He’s utterly amazing. I adore him so.)

Dad likes Halloween now because he tells Mom, “This year, you should buy a lot of candy with peanut butter in it. Kids like candy with peanut butter and chocolate.” And she does, then he turns off all the lights and says, “Oh! No kids came. I utterly CANNOT imagine WHY. I WILL EAT ALL THIS CANDY. Don’t you EVEN worry. It will NOT go to waste. How fortuitous it’s my favorite kind, PEANUT BUTTER AND CHOCOLATE!” And every year, Mom pretends she’s not aware he’s playing this trick and every year he pretends it’s a new trick he just came up with and every year it makes me laugh. (Chocolate and peanut butter is my favorite, too. Of course it is, did you have any doubt? It is DELICIOUS.) This year, Dad will miss the chocolate and peanut butter holiday. Because of MOOSE. Sigh, Dad. PRIORITIES.

These are Dad’s favorites. He could eat a billion of these things.

So. Halloween! If you go out, be careful and safe and have all the fun; if you stay in, watch something scary. That’s what Halloween’s for, as far as I’m concerned. And if you’re in the way of the Hurricane/Tropical Storm/Whatever It Is, you be careful. Don’t get washed away or blown away or electrocuted or drowned or whatever-the-hell, I worry about you. Also, shh, don’t tell anyone, but I LIKE CRAZY WEATHER. Well, as long as I’m not driving in it, or something. I love watching it. It makes me feel all electric. I think I was a storm-chaser in a previous life or something. I used to love monsoon season in Arizona so much. I used to go outside and just twirl in the purple-orange air. It was my favorite time of year.

Oh, love love love. I miss this so much.

And if you happen to see a teeny-tiny Buzz Lightyear, ask him to say his catchphrase. You’ll be filled with such hope for humanity you won’t need anything else for MONTHS. Sincerely. He’s just the best thing. The absolute best. No question. Love you, kiddo. Miss you like crazy. Happy Halloween.

About lucysfootball

I'm not the girl with the most cake. Someday. SOMEDAY. View all posts by lucysfootball

45 responses to “I don’t understand it. I went trick-or-treating and all I got was a bag full of rocks.

  • David Jón Fuller

    I always wanted one of those terrible mask-with-plastic-shirt-that-makes-explicit-what-you’re-supposed-to-be costumes, for some reason. My parents were die-hard “we’re making costumes from scratch” folks, which meant costumes were heaps of fun to make — I kept a massive box-covered-with-tinfoil robot costume in my room for weeks after Halloween one year, just because it was so awesome.


  • sj

    Hee, I had one of those plastic costumes one year. I was a witch. NO I DO NOT WANT YOU TO MAKE ME A COSTUME, I WANT THAT ONE!!!!

    And now I realize it was the most ridiculous, but whatever.

    I loved monsoon season in Arizona, too. I’d go over to my friend Nick’s house, and we’d sit on his balcony under the cover they’d rigged up and watch the lightning across the desert. Gorgeous.

    I had something else to say, but I’m exhausted and can’t remember.



    • lucysfootball

      I don’t know what it was about those things. I don’t know if it was that I wanted one, or if they were cheaper, or what the deal was. Mom was crafty. I’m sure she could have made me a costume. And did, for a few years. Once I was a clown. (Against my wishes. I was little and didn’t get a say then.) She made that costume from scratch. Luckily I had a growth spurt in the intervening year so I didn’t have to ever be a clown again.

      Monsoon season was the best. The air was just so electric. And it was so pretty!

      I am ALSO exhausted. And strangely out of sorts. I don’t know what’s up today.

      HAPPY HALLOWEEN AND ANNIVERSARY! Send me pictures of the kiddos in the costumes?


  • Charleen

    Chocolate and peanut butter IS the best candy flavor combination ever. I will instantly gobble up anything that says Reese’s on the wrapper.


  • elaine4queen

    ten is worried about the ‘cookies’ which look like cake.

    he wants to know EXACTLY what they are.


  • Kris Rudin (@krisrudin)

    I totally remember those store-bought costumes! But we rarely bought them – my mom was FRUGAL. And – HOBO! I was a hobo at least once for Halloween, and I didn’t say ‘trickortreat’ – I said ‘Can you spare a ham sandwich?” – for some reason I thought that’s what a hobo WOULD say when going door to door!! ;-)


  • Andreas Heinakroon

    We had no Trick or Treat on Halloween in Sweden when I was a kid, but we did have witches begging for sweets at Easter. Don’t think I ever dressed up as a witch, though. And in Finland we had the tradition of donning up in fancy dress and going from house to house on the 20th day after Christmas to ‘clean it out’ in exchange for sweets.


    • lucysfootball

      Who are these witches that are begging for sweets? Real witches? Or people dressed up like witches? I find this curious. If you don’t give them a sweet, do they curse you? And what kind of sweets does one give out in Sweden for Easter? I love things like this. Tell me more, please.

      Did you really have to clean the house? Because I’m not wearing fancy clothes to clean someone’s house. What if someone was a hoarder and it was so messy? You’d ruin your nice clothes! Or did you just SAY you were going to clean it out but you didn’t really have to and you still got a sweet? AND AND AND Andreas! WHAT KIND OF SWEETS! That’s always the most important part of a story. The kind of sweets involved. Also, I like the word “sweets” so much more than candy, by the way.


  • blogginglily

    Great, now I want a cookie too. But not those ridiculous cookies. Those look like grownup cookies. i want a sugar cookie caked with frosting and sprinkles.

    I hated those damn plastic masks. I just wanted to look like superman. I didn’t look like superman AT. ALL. NOW they have muscle costumes with real masks…fucking ridiculous.


    • lucysfootball

      They are DELICIOUS cookies. I don’t like those sugar cookies. They’re too sweet and they make my mouth pucker up. (I’m weird about too-sweet. I know. I KNOW. Now is not the time for a lecture on my weirdnesses with food, Jim.)

      When we were kids, we didn’t get much opportunity to look like superstars. It’s true. Realism wasn’t high on the priority list of the 70s. Well, except for when I was a hobo. I was a very realistic hobo.


  • becomingcliche

    Our parents must be related. I was forced into the hobo/scarecrow bit, too. I can still smell the burning cork that my mom rubbed on my cheeks.


    • lucysfootball

      It must have been the “it” costume those years or something. I can’t imagine saying “Mom mom MOM this year I simply MUST be a hobo.” (Although, I have always found dressing up in costumes rather silly, so most likely it was a case of “Eh, whatever, I don’t care, just put me in something so I can get the free candy.”)


  • Heather

    Ah yes, the joys of Halloween in (Central) NY–snow on the ground lots of years, always so cold we had to wear winter coats (and boots), costumes being void because we had to wear winter coats (and boots). (Whoever heard of a wizard wearing moon boots?)

    I remember them well. Haha!


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