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Halloween: Homemade costumes are best!

View from The Comfy Chair

I love fall!

The colors the smells signaling the change of seasons. Cooler temperatures, especially in the morning, motivate me to go to the cedar chest, take out my winter throw blankets and drop in my summer light throw blankets.

I picked out my spooky Halloween throw, it has ghosts, bats in an orange and black color scheme. I settled into my “Comfy Chair” and fell fast asleep.

Sometimes I dream in a deep sleep, other times in the twilight sleep half-awake half asleep, I let my thoughts wander.

In my mind, I went back to my childhood days, and the fun thoughts about Halloween filled my noggin. It always struck me as quite odd that Halloween was filled with Ghosts, Witches, Vampires, Dancing Skeletons, Wolfman, Frankenstein, The Mummy, and so many other monsters made so famous in the Monster or Horror movie genre. With all that scary stuff, we embraced our fears, dressed up often as these creatures of the night, and went out begging for treats in the dark.

Halloween originated with the Celtic festival of Samhain when people would light bonfires and wear costumes to ward off ghosts. The evening before was known as All Hallows Eve, of course, it morphed into “Devils Night” when pranks would be played, soaping windows, silly stuff like that and then as I was in my 20’s it took a dark turn into the night in Detroit when bad actors would set abandoned homes on fire.

My childhood memories of Halloween costumes were that most of them were homemade.

My mom, like many mom’s in those days, had to be creative with many things. With only one income, we did not have the funds to go out and buy costumes, and in fact, there were not many choices for costumes or anything else in those days.

Tennis shoes were basically Ked’s PF Flyer’s or Jack Purcells. If you could not afford a real Frisbee to throw, you just took the lid off an ice-cream bucket.

Many kids dressed up as a Hobo because it was easy to do, some worn-out clothes, black makeup to look like a beard, and a candy cigar that didn’t last the entire night. People did not look down on Hobos in those days, as evidenced in Roger Miller’s famous song “King OF the Road!’

Ghosts were easy, take an old white sheet, cut out two holes for eyes tie a string around your neck and off you went into the night. Dress up in a little camo, and you could be an army guy or a hunter.

I remember being a clown, vampire, Batman, and one time I used my football gear and went as a football player, I still believe that homemade costumes are the best! In my neighborhood, many people would make you act out your character before you would get a homemade treat like a popcorn ball, Carmel apple, brownies there were no worries about adulterated candy in those days.

I remember heading out to “Trick or Treat” at dusk with a pillowcase to hold my candy & treats and stay out till 11 p.m. If the house’s porch light was on, you could start. I grew up in an uncluttered time, no cell phones, black &white television, no steaming shows, DVDs videotape recorders, and fewer choices for just about everything. But we had just as much fun as kids of today, maybe more fun!

“Remember, every day is a gift! Some are just a little more fun to open than others. – © Joel M. Vernier 10/22/2019 Author of: “The Guinea Pig In the Freezer.” joelmvernier@aol.com

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