Saturday, October 30, 2010


This was going to be a blog about all my Halloween memories but, to be quite honest, my mind doesn't work like it did before the chemo. Sometimes I think it's only my short-term memory. But then I have a day like this where I just want to remember some moments of joy I experienced with my parents and I can't. I have quick images. But the actual memories are no where to be found. And it just keeps getting worse.

I had planned to post a few pictures from Halloweens long past. Pictures of me in the only store-bought costume I ever had, Batman. Pictures of me as a cowboy at a church costume fair. I have vague and faint memories of all these Halloweens. But I can't seem to access the data. Now that my computer has died, along with the back-up drive, the actual pictures seem to be lost.

What I can tell you is that every year but one in my childhood my parents always helped me make a costume. Right now I don't remember many of them. But I remember the effort, time and laughter that was put into each one. I remember carving pumpkins with my Dad and then, later, having carving competitions with him. Mom would take the seeds and roast them. I remember watching It's The Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown every year. A tradition Kristin and I will continue tonight.

Later, in high school, I would round up a group of friends and we'd go door to door handing out candy. It's a very simple, rewarding process:
  1. Make sure you've applied some kind of mask or face-paint
  2. Drive to areas where you know people or just one family (Theater teacher and friend Jonathan Siegle's house was always a stop.)
  3. Ring the bell or knock on the door.
  4. Yell, "Trick or treat?!?"
  5. When they open the door, hand them a bunch of candy and run away!
I didn't think anyone else remembered that. But this week I've had two separate people, who were friends in high school and part of two separate year's groups, mention it on Facebook. It feels good that a few people remember some of the good things I did. Sometimes it feels like, as I lose these memories, they're just gone forever. And I don't have a child that I can pass them on to before they're all gone. It's just you guys. Not that having "you guys" to talk to is a bad thing. It's just not what I had thought would happen.

This year's different. No Halloween party. We were invited to a couple, and planned on attending at least one. But I developed a sore throat and was ordered to stay away from groups of people. (Not because I'm contagious. But because I'm so vulnerable right now.) There was no pumpkin carving. We have the one Kristin carved for me, from one of those permanent foam pumpkins, the Halloween before we were married. It's a great rendition of Snoopy and Charlie Brown playing.

So this year we'll watch the Duck's game tonight on All Hallows Eve Eve and then tomorrow evening we plan to go to our church party... which I am proud to say is NOT being referred to as a "Harvest Party". I really had wanted to share some memories with you today. It's just that... I don't have them anymore.

Hope you have a great, safe, time tomorrow night. If you have nothing else to do, get some friends together and go hand out candy. Though, in today's paranoid and dangerous age, I'd recommend only going to houses you know. Here's a little photoshopped pic of Kristin for inspiration:

Kristin as the "Wicked Witch" Elpheba from, obviously, Wicked (The Musical)

My mother found, scanned and emailed me a few childhood Halloween pics. Enjoy?

My one and only store bought costume. Batman.
She has it marked as 1977 but I really look older than four here.

This is me at eight months.
You'd have no idea what the costume was without the next photo.

I think it's a butterfly.

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