Tag: trick-or-treat

Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Trick or Treat: The Art Thief and the Wild Swordsman

 

Are your dreams tricks your sleeping brain plays on you? Or are they treats? Mine are usually treats. They are cinematic extravaganzas. In fact, I am not always in my dreams, and sometimes famous actors are, even if I have no idea who they are at the time and only recognize them later. Or, there was the time after James Gandolfini’s death where I saw him playing the romantic lead in a RomCom dream. Sure, my dreams don’t always make perfect sense, but they are far better than the dreams I hear other people tell about where they are late to a test for which they haven’t studied and they happen to realize they are naked. Those other people’s dreams are definitely tricks. If that is the sort of dream you have, it’s time to sit back and read about another type of dream.

My first realization in this dream found me standing in a 1920s style convertible. It was the type where the opened roof was opened all the way back to the end of the car since, in those days, the trunk was literally a piece of luggage that one tied to a luggage rack on the back of the vehicle. The convertible was bright yellow. It was a larger car with perhaps as many as three banks of seats. At the very least, it was what would have been called a seven-passenger touring car. It was also moving. My middle brother was driving.

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Promoted from the Ricochet Member Feed by Editors Created with Sketch. A Chicago Trick or a Autumn Treat

 

How do I spend my Halloween? With Autumn (name changed to protect the guilty), my good friend and all-but-adopted little sister. She is married and an RN, but she likes to joke about being “perpetually 11.” Autumn is what happens when a tomboy stays a tomboy without crazy parents or society interfering. She likes fireworks, amateur bartending (I always get a gin and tonic when there), heavy metal, and talking about politics. Lest you think anything untoward is going on, she is a conservative Catholic married to a conservative Catholic convert with an ample firearms collection. (We were in College Republicans together.) Autumn is affectionate with all her friends, which is awesome, and also loves to dress up for Halloween.

Visiting Autumn’s old place for Halloween is an experience in and of itself. Her parents have a house that is already partway to haunted, and the decorations make the ancient bungalow look positively spooky. Her Mom is a blast and an awesome host, and Autumn is an incredible extrovert and organizer, so the party is always fun, with all kinds of guests. Autumn’s Dad, well, he makes Archie Bunker look like a woke hipster. Getting into politics with him can be either amusing or result in a barrage of invective. The guests are from all over the social/political spectrum – Autumn has maxed-out charisma – so the party would be fun regardless of what we did.

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Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. A Really Great Halloween Party

 

Way back in the 1980s, I played in a string quartet with some other amateur ladies. We played strictly for fun, and we did have a lot of it. One year, we decided to have a Halloween costume party for our many musician friends. We asked all of our friends to base their costumes on something musical, and that could be anything at all with a musical theme. We made cookies with music-note cookie-cutters, and someone brought a cake with a very clever frosting in music-staff and notes.

But the best part of that party was the costumes people dreamed up. Starting with myself, and my first husband, who was a mechanical engineer… He always liked to say that I played the violin and he played the stereo. He bought some foam-core board and made himself a very elaborate boom-box costume. He painted on all the controls, front, back and sides, including all the legends (labels) and the battery compartment. I had the bright idea of going as a clarinet. We bought some black poster-board and silver paint. We cut out the front and back, and he painted on all the silver keys. Then, he made me a headdress that was the mouthpiece, with very realistic reeds on the front. I wore the costume like a sandwich-board, with shoulder-straps connecting the front and back of the clarinet. My one mistake was forgetting to put a hinge somewhere in the front panel so I could sit down! By the end of that party, I had very sore feet!

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Alex ran down the stairs, despite his Boswell warning he was exceeding safe velocities. Metal clanged under his shoes as he passed the patch-up job near the exit. No stopping me now.  He all but leapt out the door, where the fading light cast his long shadow over the school. He caught his breath outside, […]

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Midnight’s Mystery Child In what seems like another lifetime, during a period of youth and gaiety, one mysterious occurrence dominated a single night’s spooky reign. More

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I grew up in a small town in southwestern Montana. In the 1960s, Bozeman had a population of about twelve thousand, plus around four thousand students at Montana State University (go Bobcats!). Geographically speaking, you could walk the circumference of the town in about three hours. I suppose the ease with which the town could […]

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Weird outfits, spooky decorations, scary movies – none of these affect me the way that music does. I’ve always loved this time of year for the All Hallows’ Eve music, and could hardly wait to pop my mixtape of creepy tunes into the cassette deck. And there is a lot of it, lurking in the […]

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Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. My Uncle’s Trick or Treat

 

Did you know there’s a beautiful orchid called Trick or Treat? There are several different types, but they mostly have one thing in common: they have the bright Halloween orange. And my first sight of one was at my uncle’s home.

Uncle Al had raised orchids for many years. He had a greenhouse at his home in Massachusetts, but when he moved to Florida, he didn’t require a greenhouse. By the time we followed my aunt and uncle to Florida, he had over 100 orchid plants. And I wanted to have some of my own.

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You’ll find my name under the Wimp Column when it comes to scary movies. I had to turn one off recently about the Ouija Board after ten minutes. My friend had one growing up and I swear we didn’t move it on purpose. We learned that it was a portal to bad spirits and her […]

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Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Trick or Treat: A Conversation with a Young Man

 

I happened to fall into conversation with a young veterans’ organization member, who turned out to also be eligible for the veteran’s organization to which I belong, due to service in Korea. My outfit needs more fresh blood, so I had an ulterior motive to sit and listen, just prompting him for more of his thoughts. It was a treat to hear a well-spoken young man’s perspective on his own life, work, and service. The trick, really the pleasant surprise, was to then find an amazing breadth and depth to this fellow veteran, who I took from the conversation to be in his mid-20s.

That places him on the cusp between Millennials and Gen-Z. Folks, he was none of the negative stereotypes routinely riffed about his age cohort. He started on active duty, then (fairly recently) transitioned to a reserve component. He was highly focused on leveraging the mutually reinforcing training, certifications, and experience of his civilian and military careers. He had mapped out paths of advancement in both, taking advantage of the commonality in the two technical occupations. Oh, and he had not even needed college to get on this path, but already had thought through the evening/weekend/online schooling that would punch his ticket to the top of his chosen field in both the military and civilian life.

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We have a lucky seven days open for this month. I have not yet rolled out bears or outhouses as part of October’s theme: “Trick or Treat!” Do your part to keep it that way! Treat yourself and your friends to a post, nothing tricky about it. Our schedule and sign-up sheet awaits. The clock […]

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Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. No Tricks, Please!

 

Remember Halloween? The homes that dropped sweets into our open and eager (paper) bags? The elastic string that held the flimsy Mickey Mouse or Goofy or Sleeping Beauty masks to our sweaty faces? For the rural among us, the eighth- or quarter-mile hike between houses, rewarded not with prepackaged bits of candy bars, but with candy apples, chocolate chip cookies, old maid-less popcorn balls, candy corn in baggies (no zip-locks), candy cigarettes, Chiclets, Necco Wafers, Bazooka Bubble Gum, and – glory of glories – whole candy bars, Snickers and Baby Ruth and Three Musketeers? 

Remember the gags? The water balloons? The tipped outhouses? The eggings? Ding dong ditch? (OK, one tipped outhouse, and it no longer “in service.”)

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Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Member Post

 

Nothing good happens after midnight. This quote has been attributed to various sports team coaches, probably because they all have said this on many occasions to their players. College and professional athletes, especially young men, think themselves bullet-proof, and chase the next thrill, pushing boundaries. These same athletes got to their elevated status through enormous […]

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Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Brevity is the soul of terror…

 

“What was the worst thing you’ve ever done?”
“I won’t tell you that, but I’ll tell you the worst thing that ever happened to me… the most dreadful thing…”

Thus begins Peter Straub’s Ghost Story. I don’t remember a thing about the rest of the book, but the opening line reeled me in and has stayed in my brain all these long years. Reading it over as I write this, I still get chills. Turns out, you really don’t need very many words to make the hairs stand up on the back of your neck and send shivers down your spine. In the spirit of the Halloween season and so as not to tax your attention spans, I submit, for your consideration, some pithy portents from this collection of two line horror stories:

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Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Member Post

 

Earlier posts this month broached the subject of Halloween loot. The question before us now is: what is the best and worst of Halloween loot, present or past. Herein, a few candidates for your consideration. Back in the early 70s there was a brief movement towards healthy alternatives to candy. Hence apples. But then the […]

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The medieval poet John Donne wooed his lady by noting the romance of a flea mingling his blood with hers. Consequently, fleas became fashionable across Europe. Plague was not hitherto part of the courtship routine, but every romance has its ups and downs. Since then, many clueless artists have attempted to up-show The Donne with […]

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Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Group Writing: One Man’s Treat to Me Made My Life Complete

 

I woke up on the bus. It was silent, unmoving. I was right across from the driver’s seat, so I had an unobstructed view out the windshield. I was not looking out on the expected scene of night streets of New York City. I felt a moment of dread. I must have fallen asleep and slept past my stop, and now I appeared to be in a parking garage.

It was a Friday evening, and I had had conflicting social obligations in different boroughs. One group of friends on the Upper East Side was hosting several Japanese friends whom I hadn’t seen in a year or two, and there was no way I could miss that party. The other party was a house-warmer for my former roommate, who had just moved into her own apartment near mine in the Bronx. I felt obliged to be there as well. The Express Bus was my answer: a more expensive alternative to the subway, but much safer, and a direct ride from the UES to my neighborhood in the Bronx; no train switching, no riding with weirdos in the night. Since my grandmother lived in a nursing home in the UES, I took the Express Bus at least once a week after visiting her, so I knew how great it was.

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Did you know you can buy a demon on Etsy? I wasn’t aware there was much of a market for that kind of thing, but I learned that for less than a hundred bucks you can invite the devil to come and play in your house. There are plenty available on eBay as well. More

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Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Member Post

 

Folks, you know me by now. I am perfectly ready, willing, and able to descend to outhouse humor, of a sort. My notion of an amusing story can be downright un-bearable! If Friday’s musical entry was more trick than treat to you, consider that I am perfectly capable of putting on my platform shoes and […]

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