Sunday, October 23, 2011

Complicated Lives.....part 27

Halloween 1974

I want to be a princess!!!  Back in the 70's ALL masks were designed to kill children.  We had these tiny mouth slits, small eye holes, and ridiculously minuscule pinprick nose holes.  Our faces sweat profusely, they were held on with elastic with those vicious metal ends.  Mama or Daddy...usually Mama would tighten it so it smothered you the most effectively, by tying knots in the elastic so it "fit better" meaning flush against your face with the only escape chewing out of it, or sadly cracking the edge of it as it was clawed off for fresh air!  My poor mask!  It was sort of flesh-toned, it had pink lips, plastic molded blonde hair and some bright blue overshadow, with painted on pokey lashes.  It was beautiful!!!
I went trick-or-treating with the neighborhood 'big kids'.  We went next door where we bobbed for apples, went inside to get our fresh popcorn balls, we went down the street getting apples, oranges, nuts, cookies etc.  We then went to "her"house to get "her" to go trick-or-treating.  "Her"parents were divorced and "she" lived with....(gasp) her Father!!!   I was told not to go in "her" house because 'Lord only knows what goes on in there!'  We rode the school bus together every day.  Her goat often hung out with us at the bus stop.  She had the coolest dresses, AND she was the oldest of our neighborhood group.  The big mystery of what went on was....she had a job and only a few of us knew it.  My first HUGE secret, from the age of about 3 on was not telling Mama and Daddy she had a job.  That was why she didn't hang out with the neighborhood kids much since the back to Halloween night.

We were NOT supposed to go inside her house and were NOT supposed to take anything from her Dad.  We all went inside, we all ate caramels and cookies, he was a single Dad and only had the know how to open a package of cookies and a bag of caramels.  He totally won us over because he had storebought cookies AND candy!!!  We made him smile, he hugged her tight and made us all promise to be careful.  He admonished her as the oldest to pay special attention to me, the youngest.  After we got "her" we collected the more blabbermouthy people in our group and headed off to visit the rest of the neighborhood.  This was back when we went inside everyone's home if we were invited.  We had cocoa, milk, sometimes soda and snacks.  We went inside to show our costumes to the grand parents who couldn't make it to the door.  Everyone over 60 was your Aunt or Uncle whether you were related or not.  We all spied witches flying in front of the moon and we knew what sweat and plastic tasted like.

I never wanted to be a princess again!!  But "her" secret was safe with all of us :)

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