Halloween was forecast to be chillier this year than in years past, and I overbought candy. I forget how many bags, but it was two heavy sacks from Target, at least $50 worth. I had way, way too much, so I opened one bag and had three miniature Snickers. Kate had about that many miniature Reese’s. We both nibbled on the Starburst, for a grand total loss of maybe 2 percent in gross payload, maybe less.
Then I turned on the porch light at 5:30 p.m. Buzz Lightyear arrived at 5:40, and by 7:10 I was completely cleaned out. Every year, I forget how crazy it is. Hundreds of kids, easily. I enforced the one-to-a-customer rule almost unilaterally, with a few exceptions for exceptionally cute costumes. Didn’t put Screamin’ Jay Hawkins on the iPod speakers, as I had to start work at 6, so I sat on the porch in my lawn chair, laptop open, farming pharma-news, passing out candy. Because that’s how you gotta roll when you’re a work-at-home editor whose family deserted her on the one night of the year the doorbell will ring 200 times.
A few notes to consult for next year:
1) Buy more candy. There is no such thing as too much.
2) Snickers are totally over. One kid in 10 prefers them over Reese’s Cups. It’s time to admit to yourself why you buy them, you pig.
3) The two-bowl system — chocolate and fruit groups — is a winner.
4) It’s just not Halloween without Screamin’ Jay Hawkins.
A majority of our trick-or-treaters are “non-residents,” as polite people say in Grosse Pointe. There are more African Americans living here than there have been in the past, but not as many as we see on Halloween, and the circling cars dropping off and picking up kids sort of underline it. This happened in Fort Wayne, too, and it used to bug me. It doesn’t anymore. If your own neighborhood offers a paucity of candy, come on down to mine. All are welcome on my porch.
The stupidest story to turn up on the world’s Health pages last night: Avoid Halloween candy hazards, from the Los Angeles Times Online. No, it’s not about poison and razor blades; even the most dull-witted editors have stopped beating that dead horse. No, it’s about the hazards of “digestive upset,” “choking hazards” and “damage to orthodontia.” It contains some helpful tips you have probably never considered: “Feed them a healthy dinner before they go out so they’re not as tempted to snack,” and “Limit kids to about two pieces a day from their stash of goodies, or have them trade in their candy for a toy, book or family outing.”
As my husband often says, “Where would we be without newspapers to remind us to wear sunscreen?” The author of this groundbreaking piece, Alison Johnson, seems to specialize in this sort of thing. When I googled her name and home newspaper, the Hampton Roads Daily Press, I got another tips piece, on how to get through your child’s first haircut. Tip: Take a comfort item. (” If kids are nervous, let them hold a favorite stuffed animal, toy or blanket.” Forehead smack. I never would have thought of that!) Don’t miss the classic “how to eat to stay cooler,” either. Tip No. 1: Eat smaller, lighter meals.
Eh. On to the bloggage, it’s manic Monday:
The NYT explains Theatre Bizarre. Yes, the words “outré” and “leitmotif” appear.
Elizabeth Warren, Obama’s best hope to win back the masses. At least, NYMag seems to think so.
P.S. The auto bailout worked. Why doesn’t anyone know this?
Finally, the Washington Post looks into the crystal ball, post marijuana legalization. Worth your time.
Me, I must run.