Wednesday, October 26, 2011

The Last Halloween

When I was ten, I went trick-or-treating for the last time.

I don't know where I trick-or-treated prior to that year.  Our house was on a main highway, which wasn't very pedestrian-friendly.  I assume my parents carted me to some other area of town.  Wherever we went, I do remember we always went after dark, and every single house seemed to have Halloween decorations.  You could guess which ones were going to give the best candy based on the number of tombstones and skeletons festooning the front lawn.

But that year, my mom decided all the places we normally trick-or-treated were too rapey, and the only way we could avoid being hacked into tiny pieces by an axe-murdering zombie was to get all this trick-or-treating business done before dark.

I was scandalized when Mom announced that we were leaving to go trick-or-treating at five o'clock.  I tried to impress upon her that NO ONE went trick-or-treating this early and that the sun wasn't even going to START setting for another hour at least and that people might not even be READY to hand out candy yet.  She brushed off my dire warnings as illogical whining and inwardly chuckled at my inability to comprehend the grave danger we were avoiding.

There was a golf course across the highway from our house, and in the middle of this golf course was a brand-new development of houses inhabited primarily by retirees from places like Michigan and Massachusetts who figured they'd save a little money by migrating to South Alabama instead of Florida.  Mom had selected this neighborhood as the only safe place to go trick-or-treating, so we set forth on our short journey, the radio covering our stony silence.

I had arrived at that awkward age when you want to look kind of sexy but it really just makes everyone around you uncomfortable because you're ten.  To exacerbate this, I had decided to dress up as a Spice Girl.  I looked like I'd been sold into child slavery and forced to work as a hooker.

This is a pretty accurate rendition of my Ginger Spice costume.  Mercifully, no one took an actual photo.

The late-afternoon sun blazed down on me as I clip-clopped up the front path of the first house we stopped at.  The street was filled with an eerie, bright silence, broken only by the hum of our car idling at the curb.  There was nary another human being in sight, much less another trick-or-treater.  The pastel-colored houses and neatly-trimmed lawns were entirely void of fake cobwebs and jack-o-lanterns.

Nervously, I rang the doorbell.  The sound seemed to reverberate through a cavernous space on the other side of the door.

I waited for a whole minute, but nothing happened.

I felt stupid walking back to the car empty-handed, so I decided to ring the doorbell just one more time.  This time, a middle-aged woman answered.

To protect this woman's identity, I have made her considerably more attractive than she actually was.

I walked back to the car in shame.

When we told my dad about our Halloween mishap, he had a very strong reaction.

From age 5 to age 15, I never saw my dad without a baseball cap.

Now that I've reached adulthood and gained a little perspective, I've come to a realization about that Halloween. 

We should have egged her house.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Saturday, October 15, 2011

The Cat & the Bat

There once was a girl in a third-storey flat,
which she shared with a round and fluffy gray cat.

The cat was not much for running or leaping.
 She preferred to be curled in a chair, sleeping.

But then one day, she found something pleasing:
a BAT! On her porch! And she caught him so easily!

She was sure her owner would be amazed.
She brought the bat in, hoping for praise.

But things didn't go so well after that.
The girl screamed quite loud, and away flew the bat!

The girl could've sworn she'd read something somewhere
about bats swooping down and getting stuck in your hair.

So with the bat flying all around in her flat,
the girl had no choice but to put on a hat.

Then suddenly, the bat disappeared.
 He had to be in the flat--but not here…
or here…
or here…

After searching high and low,
she found him in a pile of clothes.

But now that she'd found him, this spot wouldn't do.
The bat flew away, to find somewhere new.

Just when the girl was near losing her mind,
she found him again on her bathroom blinds.

When she saw him up close, he was really quite cute.
She wanted him gone, but what could she do?

Just when the girl was feeling quite vexed, she thought,
 "I know just what to do! Send a text to my ex!"

Her ex arrived to save the day,
and with some kitchen utensils, took the bat away.

And just like that,
the girl took off her hat,
because she and her cat
had no bat in their flat.

*~ the end ~*

No bats were harmed in the making of this post.  Based on true events that happened to my best friend.  Thank you Emily for sharing this harrowing experience with me and letting me turn it into a poem/cartoon.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

One Thing I Can Do and Two Things I Can't

Look guys!  GweenBrick gave me this beautiful award.  I've already hung it up in a nice frame.

Now I have to post a list of three random facts about myself and give the award to three more people.  Here goes.

1.  I can't whistle.

2.  I played flute in various groups from age 11-19.  I still play occasionally.

This is a blurry picture someone took of me in orchestra rehearsal.  Enjoy.

3.  I have asthma.  This is why I am strongly opposed to jogging.

Sometimes when I have an asthma attack and I'm wheezing, I sound like a dinosaur.

I hope you have learned a lot about me.

And now, in the spirit of doing things in threes, here are my three nominees for the Three Random Facts About Yourself Post.

1.  Just Inappropriate (I love it when she lists random facts about herself!)
2.  The Hubs (He swears he's going to start blogging again!  Encourage him!)
3.  MOV (Because she deserves an excuse to don her tiara.)


 *title courtesy of Andrew Adrian, although I really, really wish I had thought of that myself.

You might have seen this article online about a car crashing into an eye clinic.  The driver of this car was a patient of the eye clinic, apparently for good reason.  The eye clinic also has the same name as I do.

To prevent such mishaps in the future, I have made them a sign to hang in the entrance of their office.

I like to give back to the community when I can.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

If My Mom Had Mrs. Weasley's Clock

If my mom had a clock like Mrs. Weasley's in the Harry Potter books, it would look like this.  It has an extra hand because sometimes there is some overlap.  For example, right now, I'm home AND eating.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Financial Death-Spiral

You know how a lot of nutritionists tell you not to deprive yourself too much when dieting, or you'll just overindulge to compensate later?  I've come to discover that's kind of how budgeting works, too.

I'm usually the most frugal person ever.  I only buy what I absolutely need.  But every once in a while, my strict self-discipline backfires and a little part of me rebels.  Lately I've been going through one of those phases.  I blame it on the fact that normally, I only buy what I absolutely need because I only have enough money to buy what I absolutely need, whereas lately, I've been working a little more than usual and I actually have extra money.  After months of telling myself, "No, Haley, you can't have that bag of chips because you might overdraw your checking account," something inside me has just snapped.  I'm going to have that bag of chips, and not Buddha or Wells Fargo or my sense of propriety is going to stop me.

It's not that I'm some frivolous person who buys designer handbags on a whim.  The things I want are inexpensive.  The only problem is, I still can't really afford them.

The voice in my head has a point.  $2.98 is not that much money, and maybe I'm not THAT poor.  But then the same thing happens with half a dozen other items that are 98 cents… $1.49… $3.69… and before you know it, I'm bringing home four bags of Halloween candy, a pack of bargain granola, an extra box of oatmeal (they were Buy 2 for $5!), and a kale plant (only $2.32 for limitless amounts of fresh kale!) in addition to all my "regular" groceries (and by "regular" I mean "things I eat because it's easier to just keep making the same grocery list week after week").  I'm still convinced I'm saving money on that oatmeal in the long run.  And the kale will feed us this winter!  Except Ari doesn't like kale.  More kale for me!

This erratic behavior has been going on for about three weeks now.  I've also splurged on two chrysanthemum plants, a daisy that I literally bought out of pity because it had been abandoned in the wrong section of Lowe's, a walking stick (solid hickory!), a delivery pizza, and a sock monkey hat and matching scarf from work.

In my defense, I got a compliment on that sock monkey hat last night, and I'm pretty sure it was only half sarcastic.

When word spreads that I've lost my grip on reality, squandered all my money on candy corn, and moved back in with my parents, this post should answer a lot of questions.