Happy Helloween

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Humor  |  House: Booksie Classic
Halloween was once a time when a simple piece of candy brought a smile to my face. Adulthood has shattered those memories and attempting to attend my first Halloween party in years, things are going to go from treat to trick very quickly.

Submitted: July 12, 2012

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Submitted: July 12, 2012

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Dave looks like an idiot.  He’s wearing an oversized Afro wig and a cheap pair of plastic sunglasses.  Standing in front of the mirror, he adjusts the wig and admires his reflection. 

 

“Word! I’m gonna be da sexiest playa at dis par-tay, you dig?”  He tries his best to sound black.I ignore him and keep wandering the store.  I’ve waited until the last possible minute to get my Halloween costume.  Aside from a few pirate hats and some plastic handcuffs, the shelves are bare.

 

“I told you we should’ve gone to the Ricky’s on 34th street,” I say even though I know I wouldn’t have had any luck finding a costume there either.  Not the morning of Halloween.  If I were 9 years old I’d throw a hell of temper tantrum right about now. “This place sucks!”

 

“Why don’t you be a sexy nurse?”  Dave laughs, pointing at a mannequin dressed in the skimpiest nurse uniform I’ve ever seen.  I roll my eyes at his juvenile suggestion and I’m quick to retort.  “Fuck off,” I sigh.Sensing my frustration, one of the employees approaches and asks if I need any assistance.  He’s dressed like Dracula.  All of the employees are wearing costumes.  Marge Simpson and Snow White are working the cash register, some poor guy dressed as bowling pin is sweeping the wig aisle, and a second Dracula is outside taking a smoke break.

 

“Do you have any rocker wigs?” I ask optimistically.  I suspected the answer before he even replied.  “We really don’t have much left in stock,” he explains as if I haven’t been pacing up and down every aisle in the store the past 20 minutes. “You should’ve come in a few days ago.  Today’s Halloween, you know?”  I want to punch Dracula right in the nuts.  “Thanks anyway,” I say trying to sound appreciative.

 

“Come on, let’s get outta here,” Dave shouts from the front of the store while swinging his pink Ricky’s bag back and fourth and staring at Snow White’s tits.

 

Walking outside into the crisp autumn air, I light a cigarette and rack my brain for costume ideas but come up with nothing.  I contemplate staying home and watching the Halloween marathon of Roseanne on Nick at Nite.  If it wasn’t for the fact that Trish was going to be at Joel’s party, I would.  I hate this holiday.

 

When I was younger, Halloween was my favorite time of year.  I got dressed up as my favorite WWF Superstar or He-Man character and ran around the neighborhood on a crazy sugar rush from an endless supply of Snickers, Mike & Ikes, Nerds, Nestle Crunches’, and a wide assortment of perfectly packaged sugar goodnessOccasionally, I’d receive some pennies from some old twisted hag who was either too senile to realize the value of a dollar or was just a mean spirited bitch.Nevertheless, October 31st was a day I cherished in my youth.

 

Once I reached puberty I began to feel too mature to go door-to-door asking strangers for candy.  Being practically an adult, I did the next best thing – I threw eggs at people.  This was fun until I became the target of eggs thrown by larger, meaner kids.  Some of the more ingenious groups of adolescents actually put Nair in the egg.  I watched my friend Michael Schwartz get a Nair-filled egg stuffed down his crotch and literally smashed against his nuts.  I’m not quite sure what kind of man-bush he had down there, but it was seemingly obvious the Nair helped him man-scape long before the term metrosexual entered the popular lexicon.  Seriously; Nair inside the eggs!  Evil geniuses!  Not surprisingly, I spent the next couple of Halloweens behind closed doors.

 

Now, at 25, I’m gearing up for my first Halloween in years.  Dave is picking me up in 15 minutes and I still don’t have anything to wear.  I’ve been rummaging through my closet for an hour looking for something, anything I could pass off as a costume.  At this point, I don’t even care any more.  I throw on my old, faded NY Mets hat and head down stairs.  Dave pulls up in his beat-up Oldsmobile and you can see that stupid Afro wig from a mile away.

 

“What are you supposed to be?”

 

“I’m a Met fan,” I tell him staring out his car window, contemplating the night ahead.  My stomach is in knots wondering if Trish even knows I’m coming.  And if she knows, does she even care?I haven’t seen her since graduation, the day we broke up.  Actually, the day she broke it off, I had no say in the matter.

 

“That’s real lame,” he says and laughs.

 

I ignore him.  I really don’t give a shit what he or anyone else thinks about my choice of costume. At this point, I just hope the night ends quickly.  Dave is blasting some really bad rap music and trying to sing along with the chorus.  I roll down the window, light up a cigarette and observe hordes of happy children scampering from house-to-house with jack-o-lantern’s full of sweets.  I get goose bumps remembering those carefree days.  Dave suddenly snaps me back to reality.  “You gonna fuck Trish tonight or what?”

 

“What?”  I say, playing dumb. 

 

“Come on man, I know you’re only going to this thing to see her.  You should make a move tonight.  At least talk to her instead of hounding her on Facebook.”

 

“Maybe,” I say, brushing off Dave’s blunt question with an aura of false confidence.  Dave finds a spot around the block from Joel’s house.  A million thoughts race through my head as I get out of the car.  Do I approach Trish right away or should I play it cool and wait until the end of the night?  What am I going to say?  Walking up the block, I stop in front of every parked car to check out my reflection in the windows.  “You look fine Mr. Met,” Dave smirks.

 

We ring the doorbell and Joel greets us dressed as Elvis.  Not the skinny young Elvis, but the fat, bloated Elvis.  “Hey guys! Come on in and help yourself to a drink.”  He points us to the direction of the kitchen.  “I’ve got some beers in the fridge and a bottle of Jack.”

 

We walk through the hall past the darkened living room and I casually glance around the room for Trish.  I don’t see her.  In fact, I don’t see any girls.There are some guys I’ve never seen before drinking 40’s, smoking a joint and listening to Slayer.  We walk straight past them and into the kitchen.

 

Dave cracks open a can of Bud Light.  “Where the fuck are the girls?”  He’s looking left and right, as if a group of girls may magically fall from the sky.  I shrug, acting as if I don’t care. “I dunno”.  Staring back at that group of beer drinking metal heads suspiciously, I ask Dave if he knows any of them.  Dave shrugs and pounds his beer.  I pour myself a shot of Jack Daniels.  It burns my throat going down, so I chase it with a cold beer.  Dave and I stay in the kitchen alone, drinking and eating handfuls of candy corn from a plastic bowl.  The doorbell rings and my heart races.  I can make out female voices coming from the living room and Dave sprints out of the kitchen to see who’s arrived. 

 

Walking into the living room, I see Trish standing across the room with a few of her friends.  I’m starting to sweat.  She’s dressed as a French maid complete with a short black skirt and fishnet stockings.  Although they are totally out of place with the outfit, she’s wearing her favorite pair of beat-up, burgundy combat boots.  She looks unbelievably sexy.  I try to meet her eye-to-eye but she doesn’t notice me.  Or maybe she does, but chooses to ignore me? That bitch!  She sits on the couch next to a guy dressed up as a redneck.  At least I think he’s dressed up.  He passes her a joint.  The group of metal heads joins them on the couch, and for some reason, I am suddenly livid. 

 

For the next hour I stay in the kitchen doing shots with Dave.  It didn’t take him long before he hooked up with some chick in the bathroom.  As for me, I haven’t said a single word to a member of the opposite sex.  Joel stumbles in and says he’s got an idea to make this night much more interesting.

 

“We’re breaking into the church down the block,” he tells us. 

 

“You’re fucking crazy,” I say, not really believing him.

 

“Seriously.  Matt’s brother is a janitor there and he left the door open for us to walk right in.  How cool is that?  A fuckin’ church dude!”  At this point he takes a swig of Jack and flashes me the devil horns.  “We’re all going right now; do you guys want to come?”

 

“Is Trish going?” I ask trying to sound like I don’t really care. 

 

“Yeah.”

 

I was a little nervous.  I’ve never broken into a building before, let alone a Church.  In fact, I’ve never even been inside a Church in my life.  I haven’t had many opportunities to visit one being a barely practicing Jew.  Maybe I should break into a Temple, would that be considered less offensive?  Fuck, I don’t want to break into any building.  But if Trish was going to go, so was I. 

 

Dave shoots me a look of disgust.  “I’m leaving.  No way I’m breaking into a church.”  I am about to agree with my Afro-wearing friend when I see Trish with her group of friends, and the mysterious group of gangly looking metal heads, standing by the door getting ready to leave.


“Don’t be such a pussy,” I hear myself shout. Dave looks back at me like one might look at a puppy that just shit on the rug.  “Dude, you’re really going to do this because Trish is stupid enough to go?”  I look down at the ground and shake my head.  “No, no, um, no.” I slur.  Dave shakes his head in disgust and tosses his Afro on the floor and heads for the door. 

 

“You’re really leaving me alone?”  I ask dumbfounded.

 

“You have Trish,” he says as he is heading down the stairs.

 

Joel pats me on the shoulder.  “Don’t worry about him.  He’s wound too tight, let’s go have some real fun!”  Seeing as my only real friend just left, not to mention my only ride home, I have no choice but to follow the rest of the misfit crew towards my ultimate blasphemy.  Besides, without relying on Dave to be my social crutch, I may have to force myself to finally talk to Trish.  Joel and I, and the bottle of Jack, head down the stairs. 

 

The church is only a few blocks from Joel’s place, but the uphill walk makes it feel miles away.  Despite the chill in the air, I’m sweating underneath my Met cap.  Between my anxiety over the Trish situation, and now the fear of walking the streets of Bed-Stuy, my chest tightens.  I take a swig from the bottle of Jack, which momentarily makes me feel relived.  Joel’s neighborhood does not share in the Halloween spirit.  The streets are void of the sound of laughing children, and the streetlamps provide the only color on the otherwise pitch-black street. 

 

Trish and her group are only 10 or 15 feet ahead of me.  I don’t have the confidence to talk to her just yet, not while she’s hanging out with all of those other people.Trish and her friends suddenly stop walking.  “We have to wait with Andrea for a cab, she has to get home,” says the kid dressed as the redneck.  “You guys wanna go ahead, we’ll meet you at the Church.” Joel shakes his head no.  “We’ll wait with you guys.”  Awesome, I sarcastically think to myself.  We all converge on the corner waiting for someone to pick this girl up and save her from the remainder of the night.  If I were the driver of the car called to pick her up and glimpsed this group hanging out on the corner, I’d continue to drive right past them. 

 

We continue to wait for almost half an hour with no cab in sight.  This girl is now crying hysterically.  “I have to wake up at 6 am or I’m going to get fired!”  She’s sitting cross-legged on the sidewalk bobbing back and fourth, her hands in her face.  She’s got dried vomit on the corner of her mouth, yet the redneck still drapes his arm around her trying to consoler her, or at least shut her the hell up. 

 

“I’m going to get a pack of cigarettes, anyone need anything?” asks Trish.  This is it; this is my chance.  “I need a pack, I’ll come with you,” I say coolly.  She stares back at me for a split second and starts walking toward the corner store.  I quickly catch up alongside her. 

 

“This is pretty crazy,” I manage to say.  She looks at me and nods.

 

“So how is your new job?” I ask, genuinely interested. 

 

“It’s going great,” she says softly.  “I’m learning so much and meeting great people in the art world.”  “That’s great,” I say.  “I’m really happy you’re doing what you always wanted.”  I accidentally belch after this sentiment.  Trish giggles.  “I know we haven’t talked since graduation, but you have to understand why.” She begins.“I needed to start living my life.  My own life, not what we had the past 4 years.”  She pauses.  “You know it wasn’t healthy, for either of us.”

 

I shake my head in agreement.  My head says yes, of course.  My heart says no, I don’t understand!  I loved you. I still love you!

 

“You still smoking Newports?” she asks as we enter the store.  “Yeah.”  I hand her a $20 bill but she brushes my hand away.  “I got this,” she says.  Wonderful.  I feel like I should be wearing a shirt that says ‘I’ve dated Trish and all I got was a lousy pack of cigarettes.’  She hands me my pack and we walk back in silence. 

 

Walking up the block I notice the panic-stricken girl is no longer on the sidewalk.  “Andrea just hopped in the car service,” Joel shouts at us.  “Let’s head to the festivities.” 

 

Other than the giant cross hanging over the arched doorway, the church looks like any other building on the block.  There are at least 15 other drunk and stoned guys waiting outside to climb through the window.  I recognize a few of them from high school of all places.One by one, Joel is boosting people up through the opened window.  This couldn’t look any more suspicious, could it?

 

“I thought Matt’s brother had the key?” I ask Joel, waiting in line for my turn to slither through the cracked window and plunge into the darkness of the Church.  “He forgot it, but we got the window opened, so we’re all set bro!” He grins. 

 

I cut ahead of the jack-off that has been hanging around Trish most of the night and offer her a boost myself, following behind her.  Besides a faint light coming from the stained glass window on the opposite side of the building, the room is frightfully dark. 

 

Everyone immediately splits up.  Some people sprint for the organ, while another group rushes for the pulpit, knocking over thick, golden candleholders.  The crashing sound vibrating through out the great hall.  I decide to follow Joel and head to what appears to be the recreation room.  Judging by the motivational posters plastered on the walls, as well as the pamphlets promoting 12-Easy Steps to Healing from Alcohol, this is apparently the spot for AA meetings.  Joel quickly tears down one of the posters, I think the one highlighting Step 4, and passes me a beer. 

 

A few of his heavy metal buddies loudly enter the room.  They’ve already turned several crosses upside down in hopes of pleasing some demonic idol, and are now wearing the priest’s sacred robes.  One of them looks strangely convincing as a priest and I’m about to joke by calling him ‘Father’ when I am shoved from behind.Suddenly I hear Pantera’s Fucking Hostile blasting from the retro looking boom box.  An impromptu mosh pit has broken out.  It’s at this point that I realize I am going to hell.  I break out of the pit and lean against the side of the wall watching grown men dressed in costumes pummel each other. 

 

I can hear shouting over the music and I yell at someone to turn down the volume. 

 

“Cops!” someone screams from the other side of the building. My heart sinks into my stomach.  Like roaches with the lights turned, everybody scatters and looks for a safe hiding place.  I rush into the nursery room and grudgingly run into Trish and the metal guy from earlier.  They were putting their clothes back on when I entered and I wished the cops had nabbed us all before that image was tattooed in my brain.

 

“What’s going on?” she wonders as she slides her fishnet stockings back on. 

 

“The police are here,” I say trying not to focus on her half naked body. 

 

For the next 20 minutes, I sit perfectly still while Trish and metal boy continue to make out in the corner.  I feel sick. Finally a few guys alert us that there are no police outside.It turns out; the police were never on their way to the church.  It was someone’s idea of a joke.  We all leave the room and Trish walks away without saying a word. 

 

I leave the party without saying goodbye and hop on a bus back to my apartment.  Feeling dejected, I sit in the back of the empty bus watching the city pass me by.  As the bus is pelted with eggs by some teens on the corner, I can only stare at the yolk slowly drip down the Plexiglas and remind myself to stay home on Halloween.


© Copyright 2017 MikeGoldberg. All rights reserved.

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