Category Archives: Halloween

Halloween: becoming less fun as you get old and cranky

Well, here we are at Halloween week. I used to love Halloween, back in the day. Halloween is the best when you’re young. You get to dress up as someone you’re not and the weather’s getting all nippy and you get to go to stranger’s homes and they HAVE to give you candy. They can’t even refuse! That would be the rudest!

Gimme your candy, yo!

Gimme your candy, yo!

When I magically turned into a grownup, Halloween stopped being the most fun. Mostly that’s because I live in an area that gets no trick-or-treaters. When I first moved here and lived with C., we got maybe 4 or 5 a year, which was VERY exciting, and we’d take turns giving out the candy (and we gave those kids a LOT of candy because there were so few kids and we always bought way too much candy.) When I moved HERE, I was all excited because there are a lot of kids around, so I got a big old bowl of candy and waited for ALL THE KNOCKS and then there weren’t any so I went on the porch and there were kids in the parking lot and I was like “DO YOU KIDS WANT CANDY? I HAVE ALL THE CANDY!” and they (and their parents) gave me the weirdest look and it wasn’t until they’d left and I’d given them so much candy with the biggest goofiest grin I realized that I’d totally broken every law of Stranger Danger and I’m pretty sure everyone’s petrified of me now because I’m the porch version of a weird guy with a van so I never gave out candy again.

I think I gave out candy wrong. Dammit.

I think I gave out candy wrong. Dammit.

I don’t go to Halloween parties and I don’t care for dressing up because I’m a grownup and who would I dress up for, the cat? He wouldn’t care. He’d just sit on my lap and get whatever costume I’d wear all covered in fur. Unless I wanted to go as a crazy cat lady or as Amy on a Normal Day, being covered in cat fur isn’t really the look I would be going for, I wouldn’t think.

This looks like a very comfortable costume.

This looks like a very comfortable costume.

We’re having a Halloween celebration at work where we’re supposed to decorate a pumpkin and then we have doughnuts and cider and a food day. I’m kind of meh on the pumpkin decoration. I thought about it but I don’t feel like doing it. I am not feeling creative. We’re not allowed to carve or puncture the pumpkin in any way so it doesn’t get all rotty in the workplace. I suppose I could paint it or drape it in fabric or something but my brain feels kind of broken so I think I’ll just put the damn thing on my porch and opt out. Sorry, workplace. (I suppose I have to make some sort of cookie or something for Thursday. I’m feeling a general holiday-related malaise. I assume this is because this is when the holiday season starts and I’m not going home for either Thanksgiving or Christmas this year and that’s kind of sad-times, right? Probably.)

I should just do this. It seems very low-maintenance.

I should just do this. It seems very low-maintenance.

I think this week I need to watch some scary movies and get in the Halloween mood or something. I can’t decide whether or not they should be BAD Halloween movies or actually-scary Halloween movies. I do love a good stupid horror movie I can mock, but I also like to be scared.

And there’s always Friday to look forward to. What’s Friday, you may ask? Well! Friday is HALF-PRICE HALLOWEEN CANDY DAY. That’s the day you run to the drugstore at work and load up on what’s left. Hopefully Reese’s Pumpkins, because they are my jam. They are, however, also MOST people’s jams, and tend to go quickly. I should start a rumor like “Reese’s Pumpkins lower testosterone while also making you less attractive to men!” to cover ALL my gender-related bases but I don’t know that anyone would fall for it. Those pumpkins just that good. Sigh.

(And I suppose, if you miss half-price candy day, you only have to wait about a week and the Reese’s Trees go on the shelves. And if you miss THOSE, after CHRISTMAS, you only have to wait a month or so before the Reese’s EGGS go on sale. It’s the time between Easter and Halloween that’s the long dry period for Reese’s related holiday items.)

Now I’m going to go haunt the television for something Halloween-themed. Let’s see what I find. It’s really the luck of the draw at this point. I just looked and the only thing Halloweeny right now is The Happening. Marky Mark running from evil plants = unscary and I don’t think I can sit through that again, to be honest. Sigh.

I miss when I was young and dressing up like a hobo and begging from door-to-door was like, the best thing EVER.

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.

Halloween should be a day in which we honor monsters and not be mad at each other.

I’ve let this go FAR too long. And I know what you’re all thinking. AMY! you are thinking. It is ALMOST HALLOWEEN and you are not being HELPFUL! How will I know what to wear for Halloween this year without your very helpful advice?

I know. I’m so sorry, my little pumpkin muffins. I know last year I was all about PLANNING AHEAD and BEING THE MOST HELPFUL and I posted my Halloween costume wrapup like 90 days before Halloween and here were are less than a MONTH before Halloween and I haven’t even THOUGHT about this yet. Please forgive. I’m not even thinking about Halloween yet. I have a billion things in my head and most of them involve working and getting a job and getting enough sleep and such. But I PROMISE, just like the Willie Nelson song that always makes me cry, you, my sweet candy corns, are always on my mind. ALWAYS ON MY MIIIIND!

So let’s see what’s the latest in whore couture this year for Halloween. Will there be slutty cartoon characters? Slutty horror-movie killers? Slutty video-game characters? WE SHALL SEE! (SIDE NOTE! Once, at work, some toolbag was yelling at one of my coworkers about not getting a call back from his doctor, and she said, “we’ll have the doctor call you right back, sir,” and he was all “we shall SEE!” and we said that to each other about everything for months. She’d be all, “I really need to run to the bathroom” and I’d say, all portentous-like, “WE SHALL SEE!” and we’d giggle like morons. You think we don’t make fun of our callers? Wrong, Good-Time Charlie.)

This is a snowy owl. A SEXY snowy owl. Hoo! Hoo! Who’s gonna get syphilis tonight?

This is a wildcat. I’m thinking you want 0% body fat to wear this puppy. Shiny mylar is not very forgiving to being chubby. Also, you know that tail’s all going to drag on the floor and get filthy in about 20 minutes, and how fast can you really get out of this if you want to, say, pee, or hook up with your best friend’s husband on the patio? This one seems ill-advised.

This is the Queen of the Jungle, so I assume she’s supposed to be a lion of some sort? You could see her whole ass in this. This costume is NOT SCREWING AROUND with the ass-revealing. If she…were queen…of the FOREST! everyone would see her bum.

This one’s a Ravishing Peacock. You can tell because it has feathers springing out of her head. It’s also EXCLUSIVELY Party City’s, so don’t you go stealing it. They want you to know they came up with this idea ALL ON THEIR OWN. I don’t think anyone wants to have sex with a peacock. They have totally pecky little beaks.

Because nothing says “random Halloween party hookup” like the Travelocity gnome. If you took off that ridiculous hat she’d just be a server at Oktoberfest, I suppose. So this is a MULTITASKY costume!

This is a sexy toy soldier. You know what makes a man want you? Having you dress as a nutcracker.

If my nurse came into my hospital room dressed like this, I’d be all kinds of freaked out and I’d ask her how sanitary showing that much skin could possibly be. What’s the pickup line you use with this costume? “Bend over and pull down your pants so I can do an anal exam for prostate cancer, you sexy thang?”


You know who likes to go swimmin’ with bowlegged wimmin? No one, that’s who. I like that this is on sale. Party City has given up on this costume.

Fish-sex didn’t work out for Tom Hanks in Splash and it’s not going to work out for you here. Also, YOU CAN’T PEE IN THIS COSTUME. Say what I will about those costumes that show your whole coochal area, at least they’re easy-access when you drink too much and have to pee.

This is a sassy maid. I don’t know how sassy you want your maid to be. I think if you gave your employer too much lip, they’d fire you. It’s a tough job market out here, sassy maid. Maybe you ought to get to scrubbing those toilets and stop with the backtalk if you want to pay your rent.

“Cigarettes! Cigarettes! Who wants cigarettes? What? No one? No one smokes anymore? Shit. Um. Blow jobs! Blow jobs! Who wants blow jobs?”

I don’t have much to say about this, other than the model’s pose is HILARIOUS. “Pose broken. No, MORE broken. NO MORE BROKEN. Now look dead. You look bemused. Why do you look bemused? STOP IT. Fine, whatever, I have to go photograph the whorish garden gnome in like five minutes, CLICK. You’re done, go wash that shit off your face.”

“Ray, when someone asks you if you’re a god…Ray? Ray, are you listening to me? MY EYES ARE UP HERE, RAY.” Also, you’re not hunting any ghosts in those heels. And are those boots, or pumps with socks? What’s happening down there? What’s that? None of you are looking at her footwear because you can’t look away from her boobs? UGH YOU GUYS!

Halloween is the one night the crazy girl can dress up and get away with being insane and blame it on the costume. “I’m the MAD HATTER! HA HA HA! That’s why I just set your hair on fire! No other reason than that! Want to take me home? I MIGHT NEVER LET YOU LEAVE! HA HA HA I’m KIDDING I’m the MAD HATTER!”

This is a dirty desperado costume. That means she’ll give you the clap.

See, what did I tell you? That Travelocity gnome costume could totally double as an Oktoberfest waitress costume. I don’t think the waitresses at Oktoberfest have their crotches lit up so as to be easily-identified by the menfolks, though.

This is a naughty nerd. I guess that means she’ll tutor you in math and then also let you put your protractor in her rhombus.

I am utterly confused about this situation. Someone help me out here. This is “Terrifying Tina.” What’s terrifying? Her hair color? Her little monster hat? The fact that her dress is two sizes two small?

This is the scarecrow from the Wizard of Oz? Only SEXY. Because you know what’s sexy? Screwing a pile of straw. That’s not scratchy on your man-parts at ALL. Scratch. Scratch, scratch. If I only had a brain. Or a condom.

HAPPY HALLOWEEN COSTUME PLANNING! Thank you, Party City. You never fail to amuse me with your offerings. You’re really the best, slutty-costume-wise.

I am the one hiding under your stairs, fingers like snakes and spiders in my hair

I’m fairly practical. I’m not scared of much. I know I’ve mentioned this. Sure, those stupid children’s haunted houses scare the crap out of me, but that’s mostly because I’m scared of the unknown, i.e. people jumping out at me, not so much the noises and the fake blood and the people dressed as emo mummies and what have you. I’m not scared of creepy-crawlies and I’m not scared of heights (well, I mean, I’m not saying I want to jump off of high things, that’s just stupid, but I wouldn’t be the person weeping and wailing on The Amazing Race too scared to go on the gondola over the mountains, if you know what I mean) and I’m not scared of horror movies (well, mostly, I mean, you’d have to be an idiot not to be a little creeped out by The Exorcist, right? I mean, that’s the DEVIL. Who’s not creeped out a little by the DEVIL? Weirdos, that’s who.)

I’m scared of things like not having enough money and losing my job and people I love dying and getting maimed in a fiery car crash and people touching me in crowds. You know, normal things like that. What, normal people aren’t scared of people touching them in crowds? FINE. That one’s a me-thing. LET ME HAVE IT.

However.  It’s Halloween. And, in honor of Halloween, which is actually, contrary popular belief, NOT “dress up like a skank ho” day and more “the wall between the worlds is thin” day, here are my somewhat otherworldly experiences, for you to take as you will.

I’ve been in two places where I had a weird feeling. No, not a “probably I shouldn’t be here, Fratboy Joe is really getting grabby hands after his fifth Jaeger shot,” but a “there’s something here that doesn’t want me here.” One was in a House of History/museum where I’d gone for a lecture about the history of the town where I lived. Halfway through the talk (which wasn’t even about ghosts or anything spooky), I started getting a very, very bad feeling. It wasn’t due to the audience, which was mostly me and then a ladies’ book club with a lot of red hats and blue hair; it was something in the room and something in the air. I can’t explain it. The house seemed negatively charged. The person giving the lecture had started by briefly saying it was one of the oldest houses in town, nothing more than that, so nothing that could have preyed on my subconscious. I stayed for the lecture, but can’t remember much of it. I was fighting with my flight response the entire time. After it was done, a guide appeared and asked if we’d like a tour of the house. I’d been planning on staying for the tour – as mentioned, nothing I like more than history – but I ran out like I’d forgotten the iron on and my house was on fire. I wish I could tell you I found out a triple homicide happened there or something, but I don’t know. Just one of those things, I guess.

Same thing happened, but on smaller scale, when my friend Mer and I went to visit the Winchester Mystery House in California about ten years ago. Loved the place – you just don’t get something creepier and more steeped in history than that house, plus it’s just utterly gorgeous (and there is TOTALLY a Big-style Zoltar machine in the lobby) – but we entered one room that the guide told us had been used for séances and I was immediately on alert, with everything in me screaming to get out. Nothing struck me as weird about the rest of the house. Do I think something bad happened in there? Do I think there were malevolent spirits? I don’t know. It’s pretty arrogant of me to think I know everything there is to know about the world, isn’t it? So I just don’t know.

I’ve also has had two occurrences happen to me that I can’t explain. One of which science seems to want to explain away for me; one of which I never got an explanation for.

The first was in my very first bachelorette apartment in graduate school. It was a tiny place – just a wee little studio, with the most adorable Murphy bed you’ve ever seen – and also, probably just about the least-likely place for anything strange to happen, because where would the ghost HIDE? The OVEN? There weren’t even any SHADOWS. It was like a walk-in CLOSET, it was so small.

One night, I woke up from a sound sleep and someone was standing over my bed.

I couldn’t see him clearly, just his shape. It was very dark in the apartment, and since I wear glasses, I’m pretty much blind without them when I wake up. He was standing to the left of me bed, watching me sleep. I could tell it was a male – the outline was too large and blocky to be female.

I couldn’t figure out how anyone got in. I’d locked and chained the door. I wasn’t sure if I should move, or stay very still and pretend to be still sleeping. I decided that was stupid, and opened my mouth to scream. I couldn’t. I couldn’t move. Not a muscle. I was completely frozen in my bed. My cat, sleeping next to me, woke up, arched her back, hissed at the man and ran under the bed. I just stayed there, frozen, watching him. He didn’t move. I got very, very cold. I could see his eyes, just a glitter from them from the moonlight from the window.

When I woke up the next morning, of course there was no one there. The chain was still on the door. There wasn’t even any proof that it wasn’t a dream, so I suppose it could have been. But I don’t dream. Not really. I mean, sometimes I have very stupid dreams where I’m making out with my high school crush or something and just when it gets good the alarm goes off, but nothing like that. I’m still convinced, years later, something was there. It was too real to have been a dream. I don’t imagine things – contrary to popular belief, I’m just not that creative.

Apparently, this is a thing. It’s a syndrome, Sleep Paralysis. But I’ve read up on it and it doesn’t say anywhere that it happens to you once and never happens again. So sure, maybe it was a one-time occurrence of sleep paralysis. I mean, anything’s possible, right? But I think there was something in my apartment that night. I really do. I don’t know what it was, and I feel kind of stupid even saying it, but it was too real to have been out of my head. The things in my head are a lot more entertaining than a shadow with shiny eyes, I mean, seriously.

Second, and much less explained-away-by-science: I used to work at a theater that had a long history and was in a very old building. (I still do, just a different one in a different town, but unfortunately, no ghosties have popped up to say hi yet. And I’ve even encouraged them by walking around in the dark. I guess I need to yell “COME AT ME BRO!” and see what happens? No. No, I don’t think I will. That is actually the opposite of what I think I will do.)

One night, after our evening performance, the cast was going out to a party and I had to work early in the morning so I volunteered to stay and lock up so they could leave and get ready. I was alone in the building for a while, cleaning up, getting things set for the show the next day, puttering around in the theater, where I felt very comfortable.

I set the alarm, locked up, ran to my car, then realized I’d forgotten something (no idea what, it was a while ago) in the basement (where the dressing rooms and costume area were.) Cursing my idiocy, I ran back in, unlocked, unset the alarm, locked the door after me so no one would creep in while I was in the basement, and went downstairs. I only turned on a couple of lights because I knew exactly where what I needed was and I knew the place backward and forward. I didn’t need lights to find my way around.

I was halfway back from grabbing whatever it was and on my way back up when the noise started. It was coming from directly overhead – so the stage, which was what I was underneath at that point – and it was loud. The ceiling was shaking, it was so loud. I let out a little scream, because that’s the last thing you’re expecting when you’re alone in the half-dark, some sort of loud thundering noise.

It was horses. Horse hoofbeats. And what sounded like wheels. And it went on for a few minutes. I stood, frozen, listening, watching the fluorescents on the ceiling jiggle, wondering if the theater director, known for his pranks, could possibly have set up something this elaborate, with the sound AND the special effects AND the not-laughing (he was known for giggling halfway through his pranks and ruining them, and this was going on for a while.) I couldn’t think of any way anyone could do all of that, even with the theater’s sound system and technology to work with.

It stopped abruptly, like a cord had been yanked out. Everything was silent. I stood there for a few more minutes, then quickly ran upstairs, shutting off lights as I went, set the alarm pad, locked the door, and ran to my car.

No one ever mentioned it to me, so if it was a prank, they didn’t get the satisfaction of knowing how it affected me, if at all. I didn’t mention it to anyone because if it WAS somehow a prank, I didn’t want them to know it had unnerved me.

I read a few years later the theater used to be a saloon, and saw a photo of it in the 1800’s, with a horse and carriage pulled up in front. Could be coincidence. I didn’t know it at the time I heard the noise.

I still don’t have an explanation for it. I know it’s not scary, like a possible dream-man or maybe a killer WHO KNOWS standing over your bed. But it’s kind of cool. I probably should have gone upstairs and seen if there was a ghost cowboy who wanted me to be his ghost schoolmarm, because that might have been totally a romance novel waiting to happen, right? And – BONUS – it was kind of a night “mare.”GET IT BECAUSE HORSES. Ha!

Happy Halloween, everyone! May your evening be filled with fun-sized Snickers and kiddos dressed up like little hoboes and bobbing for apples and crunchy leaves and pumpkins glowing from porches. Just trust me on this – just say no to the sexy _______ (serial killer/baby doll/paparazzi/cow/etc.) costumes, ok? IT’S TOO COLD TO HAVE YOUR BUSINESS ALL HANGING OUT THERE LIKE THAT FOR THE LOVE OF PETE.

“Eddie, did I leave my training manual in there? MY EYES! AH! NO! MY EYES!!!”

Saturday night! Important things to talk about, people. IMPORTANT THINGS.

Ladies and gentlemen, I bring you: SNOWPOCALYPSE.


OK, maybe not really snowpocalypse. Maybe it’s just snowing some and then it will be done snowing and is it a pain in the ass? YES it is a pain in the ass. Because it isn’t even HALLOWEEN yet. And that’s nice. Isn’t that nice? That our fall was totally cut short by some sort of nor’easter?

Also, we COULD call it Snowmageddon but let’s not shoot our wad yet, people. It’s only October. Save something for February. HAVE YOU LEARNED NOTHING.

Also, until I moved here, I didn’t know that anyone said nor’easter unless they were in a Stephen King novel? So I like to say it a lot. NOR’EASTER!!!!

So, if you’re not from New York or the east coast, right now, AT THIS VERY MOMENT, it is SNOWING. In OCTOBER. Sometimes? That happens. This is not without precedent. It has happened before. And! Guess what? It will totally happen again. SNOW SOMETIMES HAPPENS WHEN YOU LIVE HERE.

Also, whenever I think of bad weather, I think of Chris Farley’s El Nino sketch. “I am El Nino! That is Spanish for…THE NINO!”

Here are some totally helpful things you can and should do when it snows:

  1. Make sure your heat works
  2. Make sure you are prepared (shovel, winter clothing, ice scraper, a normal amount of food)
  3. Bundle up nice and cozy, preferably with someone you want touching you, and watch something awesome (I recommend, since it is a Halloween snowpocalyse, horror movies) and then maybe take a hot shower, with or without the loved one, your choice

Here are some things I would please ask that you STOP DOING when it snows, please, for the love of Pete:

  1. Driving like the roads are a sheet of ice when they’re not; taking up two lanes for no reason I can ascertain; driving 10 miles an hour on the highway when there’s really no reason for that; not cleaning all the snow off your car and then driving really, really fast past people so they get all of your snow in their face because that’s totally not an asshole move
  2. Calling every single office of every single doctor, lawyer, heating and cooling place, etc. that I answer for at the answering service and SCREAMING at the operator, “I NEED HELP RIGHT NOW BECAUSE IT’S ABOUT TO SNOWWWWWW” as if you’ve never, ever, in your entire life, seen a single flake, or maybe snow is actually acid or hot lava
  3. This is related to number 2, but also, if a business closes early because of an impending SNOWPOCALYPSE? Don’t act like a jerkoff to the answering service about it. “They closed EARLY? Must be NICE,” you sneer. Well. Where are YOU right now, Chumley? At home, you say? Oh, well, then, I guess you have no room to talk, now do you, because YOU are not risking YOUR neck driving home on roads that have been marked as state of emergency just to be there for asshats like you that want to talk to someone for non-emergent reasons like “In three weeks I have an appointment and I’m wondering if you could tell me if there will be plenty of open parking in the lot that day? YES, I have to know today. IT IS TOTALLY AN EMERGENCY.”
  4. Going to the grocery store and stocking up on 47 carts of staples as if you are never, ever going to get to the store again (sidebar: one year, I saw a woman with two carts full of bread. TWO CARTS. A couple of hours before another SNOWPOCALYPSE.  I can’t even imagine. HOW COULD YOU EVER USE THAT MUCH BREAD. Was she going to lay it out on her driveway to shield it from the snow? Was she going to make a little fort out of it? Was she going to cover herself in it in lieu of winter clothing? IT BOGGLED THE MIND.) You don’t need ALL the bread, milk, and peanut butter. Do you need maybe one of each? Sure. Sure you do. But you know what? I bet the day after SNOWPOCALYPSE you will be able to get back to the store for more supplies. It is a safe bet you will.

Nothing gets me hotter than motivational posters and a speakerphone

All Over Albany pointed me toward this news story this week. In case you are TOO LAZY TO CLICK (and if you are, seriously, you really need to take some iron supplements, or something, what is wrong with you) here are some highlights:

A former NYS Department of Environmental Conservation employee was arraigned in court recently for racking up over $20,000 in phone-sex-line fees that he charged to his office, over 500 work hours, in four different work conference rooms in the office in the hopes that the calls wouldn’t be tracked back to him. He called a plethora of juicily-named phone sex lines (and it’s worth clicking on that first link just to see how that totally official NYS PDF is all listing phone sex lines like “VIP Sensual Chat” and “Secret Encounters.”) I especially like this quote from the second article: “The latter five charges say that Reilly knowingly filed false time sheets saying he was working when he was spending hours talking dirty on the phone.” Heh. “Talking dirty.” Awesome. WE ARE FIVE YEARS OLD.

OK, I know, I’m totally naive, here, but here are some questions I have.

  1. How the hell big is the NYS DEC office that it has at least 4 conference rooms? My office has, TOTAL, four conference rooms. And I can tell you, if I was “talking dirty” in one of them, my co-workers would know. Those walls are paper-thin. I think the NYC DEC office is like a gigantic cavern. Which is awesome, but also kind of makes me jealous.
  2. Who thinks talking dirty at work is a good idea? I mean, does your office have a conference room? THEY ARE NOT SEXY. They’re all bland, bland, bland. Bland wall treatments, a bland picture of something bland, and in my office, at least, most of them are stuffed with outdated tax manuals. WHAT WOULD GET YOUR MOTOR RUNNING ABOUT THIS.
  3. $20,000? Really? That is INSANE. 500 hours? $20,000? So, let’s do some math, even though we know math = totally the hardest, right, Barbie? 500 hours, $20,000. That means the phone sex lines cost $40 an hour? OK, I know that seems awesome? But think about this with your thinker. I get my eyebrows done, because otherwise I totally am a yeti? And that takes her 10 minutes. For this service, I pay her $10, with a $5 tip. (She DESERVES it. She is KILLER with my brows. I mean it. YETI, you guys. Not even kidding.) So she makes $15 for 10 minutes. Which means my awesome, kickass stylist makes $90 an hour. And listen, I love her to PIECES (I have followed her to three salons, so deep is my love) but phone sex seems TOTALLY THE HARDEST. How would you not LAUGH? You deserve extra money for not laughing. I mean, the minute some sad sack asked me, “So what are you wearing?” in a pervy voice I’d be in utter and complete cliche-driven giggles. $90 > $40, in case you’re keeping track. PHONE SEX OPERATORS YOU’RE DOING IT WRONG.
  4. I feel SO BAD for his coworkers I can’t even. You KNOW they knew what was going on. He’d probably get all excited, and all, “Have to make a call,” and walking all stiff, and they’d roll their eyes and be all “Oh, for the love of…Eddie’s going back to his wank-a-thon again, better tell the cleaning crew to bring extra Lysol tonight,” and they’d do whatever possible, including TALKING REALLY LOUD ABOUT NONSENSE, to drown out good old pervy Eddie’s jack-o-rama in Conference Room B.


“…uh…yeah…that’s it…talk about that…what are you doing right now…”


“…you’re a dirty girl, aren’t you, Shana…yeah, that’s it, baby…”


“uh…you know I like that, baby…oh, yes…oh, YES…”


“oh…Shana…you’re the best, baby…almost there now…yeah…”




“YES! SHANA! YES YES YES! I mean…um…thank you, Mr. Thompson. That’s all the information I’ll need for my investor’s report today. Ahem.”


Shh…We’re Hunting Wabbits

Today, I got a text from a friend.

“You have a blog! Busted.”

Which is kind of funny? Because strangers read this daily, but the fact that REAL LIFE PEOPLE THAT I KNOW IN REAL LIFE WHO ARE REALLLLL might read it kind of both scares the shit out of and exhilarates the pants off me in equal measure.

I don’t tell people I know in real life about this. I mean, I don’t hide it, either. It’s on my Facebook page and my Google+ page, both of which are pretty easy for people who know me to find if they feel like Sherlocking it up, I suppose. I just don’t post links to what I write on there. I don’t think most people I know in real life would care that much what I ramble on about and what a complete and total dork I am.

That goddamned Facebook ticker bullshit thing outed me. What the hell, Facebook ticker? I thought I set that thing so nothing I posted ended up on there? I mean, I disabled that bullshit the minute it came out because I have Google Chrome and there’s an app you can add on that makes it DIS-A-FRIGGIN’-PEAR, but apparently things I say ARE ENDING UP ON STALKER TICKER. Total flying below the radar fail. Thanks a lot, Zuckerberg.

I’m totally a shy violet. Don’t tell a soul. Or I’ll chop you up with a chainsaw and feed you to my pet piranha, Fluffy McWigglepants.

Anyway, say hello to N., who may or may not be reading this and be A REAL PERSON I KNOW. N. has the distinction of being one of my favorite actors AND a real-life person that I stalked one time because I saw him in a play and liked his performance SO MUCH that I was BOUND AND DETERMINED to get him to audition for my theater and that didn’t work out at all because my entire plan involved me seeing him one time on the street and was going to talk to him until I realized that made me a cray-cray so I was too scared to and then I thought I would do some investigative work and find out what mutual friends we had and make THEM introduce us, wasn’t that totally underhanded, then I got distracted by something that I’ve forgotten because that was totally like five whole YEARS ago, what do I LOOK like, an ELEPHANT, come ON, people, until he auditioned even without my meddling schemes. Also, he has good hair. How can that be wrong? WELCOME TO N.! CALLOOH CALLAY.

So now we’re up to FOUR WHOLE PEOPLE THAT I KNOW IN REAL LIFE that know I have a blog. I know, right? TOTALLY THE BIG TIME. I’d break out the champagne flutes if I hadn’t broken them all pretty much immediately after getting them. THOSE THINGS ARE TOTALLY FRA-GEE-LAY.

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