Saturday, November 3, 2012

Happy Halloween!


Well, anywho. Halloween is over. On to Thanksgiving. On to Christmas. The Retail Shuffle. Feast or famine?? We will have to wait and see!

Wylie had a marvelous Halloween! His cartoon shows have been playing Halloween episodes since September, and he had been asking me to take him trick or treating daily for a while now. About a month ago, I started asking him what he wanted to be for Halloween. I didn’t know if he’d answer. I didn’t know if he knew what I was talking about. I didn’t know that he would care what he wanted to be even if he understood me. But eventually he settled on a ninja costume, and he picked the most gruesome ninja costume he could have possibly picked. In the beginning of October, we bought some pumpkins to decorate our front porch, and Wylie was impatient about cutting into them. When the time finally came, he insisted on Happy pumpkin faces, not scary. He heard this on Agent Oso, but he wasn’t exactly scripting. He had just created this personal narration about Halloween based on observations and context clues. Friggen genius. And he’s so confident in his ability to assess the “sitch.” It’s really gonna be funny when he’s a teenager and his arrogance gets him burned, but for now, yeeeah! Way to believe in yourself, Son. You da man.

When the actual day came, I donned my spunkiest costume EVER, and this still consisted of a half assed witch hat and some funky witch shoe covers over my Chucks. It was awesome and fun, anyway. The plan was simple- I would take my son trick or treating in our neighborhood until my hubby got home from work, when we would hit up his parents’ neighborhood. It’s tradish. Hehe.

I talked to Wylie about the game plan. “All right, Wylie, so, you’re gonna knock on the door, and then when they open the door, you say, ‘Trick or Treat!’ and then you get your candy, and you say, ‘Thank you!’ and then ‘Happy Halloween!’” I was really excited about the script, actually. Last Halloween, Wylie was largely unintelligible in his speech and his responsiveness was hit or miss. And, you know, he was two, and it didn’t make for any awkwardness or apprehension, and it wasn’t a big deal, but it’s still exciting to engage in slightly more meaningful ritualism, now that Wylie kinda “gets” Halloween, for real.

He did well. I mean, it’s hard to fuck up Halloween, but still, he did well! And many times, you could tell he became overwhelmed by his senses. And he would just freeze. Not in terror, and for that, you know, we’re grateful. He just had to deal with his sensory input right quick.

He flipped his shit once when he knocked on a door that went unanswered. That was some bulllshit, anway, but I suppose it’s all in good pranking fun to have your entire house decorated and all your friggen lights on, just to psych out little kids (little autistic kids, at that). Well played, Neighborino. Well played.

He got kinda ticked off when people were posted outside with candy. Didn’t fit into his personal narrative, I’d guess. A couple times he would tell the neighbor, “I go ring the door, and you give me candy, at the door.” After a few times of this request being denied, he huffed and asked to go home. I shrugged and we headed home. I was just, you know, being laid back on Halloween, but Wylie figured I called his bluff. He immediately asked to go back out, and from then on, he accepted candy handed out in front yards without an argument.

When my husband got home, we headed over to my in laws, and the Halloween spirit was strong in my little one. He’s usually fairly behaved at his grandparents’ house, but this time, upon arrival, he began juggling the antique knick knacks. His grandmother shooed him out the door. 

On to more Trick or Treating! He didn’t always get the script exactly as we practiced. Sometimes he didn’t say anything. Sometimes he was a little imposing. Oftentimes he asked to go inside and hang out. This ONE lady made the mistake of saying he “could have anything he wanted. What do you want??”

His response? “Your piano.” Well, really. Whose fault was that? We laughed it off, and it was obvious he felt a genuine sense of injustice when he insisted, “But! I want to play the piano!” But he’s three, and adorable, so, we laughed at his expense some more, before I encouraged him to accept some M&Ms with grace. He did. Rockin’.

Anyway, we went back to show his grandparents his loot, and then we headed home. He wasn’t the least bit interested in his candy that night, but I think he psyched me out. He was sooo uninterested, I left his little pumpkin bucket within arms reach, and then tonight I caught him helping himself to lollypops and tootsie rolls. Well played, Son. Well played.

The next morning, he asked to go Trick or Treating, “one more time.” I explained, you know, it’s this annual event, and he’d have to wait. He then asked to go to Africa.
Okay. Right on! Happy Halloween!

Friday, November 2, 2012

On Halloween, and Social Transgressions

Ah, Halloween.

Um. My favorite holiday. Hands down. Which is funny, because, my entire life, I have phoned in my costumes. Yuh. I don’t think I’ve ever put too much thought into what I was going to wear for Halloween. But I love me some Halloween because it’s all about pranks, and candy, and partying, and shenanigans.

I think my foreign friends overthink Halloween, but I am going to try very hard not to judge or mock. But, I mean, seriously. The whole entire point of Halloween is, like, not bein’ too uptight. (Fake frenemy smile) Love you…

But anywho. Halloween. This is Wylie’s… 4th Halloween? Right? In 2009, he was a dragon. He was 9 months old and walking. In 2010… he was a…skeleton. It was an ill fitting costume. 2011 he was Buzz Lightyear, and he was friggen adorable, and very happy to be Buzz. So this was the 4th Halloween, and this year, he was a zombie ninja.

YEAH. Ha, ha. A ZOMBIE NINJA. With a bloody ninja star protruding out of his head. YEAH! I know, like, gee, do I want a cookie or something for bein’ edgy?

Uh, yeah. Cuz, wtf. Cuz costume taboos are kinda lame, and people get serious about them. I think there is a pretty good reason to reject slutty, sexual costumes for prepubescents. Other than that, um, I think you’re overthinking Halloween again.

Um. And I feel the need to express an unpopular opinion here about manners and respectful conduct. Um. While I have learned a LOT in my adult life about the value of politeness, and social reciprocity, and the like, I still think there is something inherently wrongheaded about prioritizing Not Making Transgressions over Forgiving Transgressions, social or otherwise, but we will stick to social ones in this context. I believe people often put a HUGE burden on others not to BOTHER them, when, really, it goes AGAINST the value of cooperation, the value of compromise, and the value of, you know, learning to be an adult, and dealing with inconveniences.

And I mean that in general, but yeah, the topic of Halloween got me thinkin’ about it. I just cannot imagine the value of being upset about an underdressed child on your doorstep on Halloween. Really. I really don’t see the slight.

And, you know, this gets me thinking about the whoooole argument that, “We all need to be a little more compassionate when it comes to rude little assholes, because they may just have a disability.” I think this is an awesome thing to point out, and all, but at what point do we say, “Um, have more compassion. Period.”?? At what point do we say that part of being out in public and being part of society is accepting that people may behave in a way we personally find distasteful, or even downright wrong? At what point do we say that waiting around for people to behave the way YOU personally see fit is far more imposing than exposing someone to behavior they may find distasteful- just by being in close proximity to them??

I could go on and on. Believe it or not, I’ve barely set the soapbox down, much less climbed up on top of it, yet. But I didn’t even really mean to go there, honestly, and it’s a little ironic to get, like, seriously outraged because other people get outraged too much, so. I gotta lose the passion, and the train of thought, for now. Much love!