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Tag Archives: Halloween

What’s so Great about the Pumpkin Anyway? (Embracing My Birthday) or I Got a Rock!

I got a rock

I tried to let it go in last year’s rant, “My Spooktacular Birthday.”  Now that I’m turning 29 for the eight time, I really should just learn to embrace my birthday being on Halloween.  Maybe I need therapy…in the form of chocolate.

Ah, yes, chocolate.  Now that is one good thing about having my birthday on Halloween.  When I was a kid, once people realized they had forgotten my birthday in the excitement of Halloween candy and costumes, I often got guilt chocolate.  Sometimes teachers would make sure I got extra cookies if we did class Halloween parties.  This part was acceptable. Here are some other acceptable byproducts of having a Halloween birthday.

Autumn has always been my favorite time of year.  The weather is usually quite comfortable- warmish during the day, with a slight chill in the evening.

I look good in fall colors.

It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown and Garfield’s Halloween Adventure specials.

One year, my mom, my oldest sister, and I had a Lethal Weapon marathon (this was when there were only three).  That has nothing to do with my birthday being on Halloween, but just shows they loved me enough to do what I wanted to do that day.

I can play dress up on my birthday and not look like an idiot.

My birthday isn’t on Christmas. I can’t imagine having to compete with baby Jesus on my birthday.

I know I can now count on Facebook to remind everyone and even suggest they all give me gifts.

This year, I vow to really let it go and embrace the day (though I really wish all calendars had “Terri’s Birthday” printed on them instead of “Halloween.”  Mine does.  My very smart husband had ours custom made.

My Spooktacular Birthday

I’ve spent my life cringing every time someone says, “Your birthday’s on Halloween?  That must be so cool!”  Yeah, it ranks right up under having a Christmas birthday… and anything else that puts your special day as an after-thought.  Who doesn’t love being second place, or sometimes even being forgotten?

Click here to see what I feel like on most my birthdays.

What?  I sound bitter?  You bet I do!  Growing up, I always felt like all the other kids were having more fun than me on that day.  Oftentimes, even my birthday cards must be reminders that my birthday is just part of something obviously seen as much more extraordinary, like ghosts and witches, and sometimes black cats.  Apparently there are enough of us out there that the greeting card industry has designated a special line just for us… Oh, boy!  The solace I find in this  is that I may be able to find a support group.

My Halloween/birthdays were always so… awkward.  My family didn’t celebrate Halloween, and since I grew up where we had many Mormons at school, and they couldn’t say the “Pledge of Allegiance,” have candy from Halloween parties, or play in any reindeer games at Christmas, everyone thought I was Mormon too.  I’m not.  Never have been.  I even celebrated everything else (and proudly said the Pledge), but I had to try explaining that it was an evil holiday and I would happily eat cookies and candy, but I wouldn’t give out any (sure, I see the double standard now that I’m an adult).  Most people never got it, so Mom often decided to let me stay home on my birthday. Kinda cool, but then there was no chance anyone would remember my birthday.  You’ve got to have a presence, you know?

On my birthdays, my dad usually worked, and my mom and two sisters and I would shut the lights out for a few hours and pretend we weren’t home.  That always makes for a fun birthday evening.  You really can’t even light birthday cake candles then.

My best childhood birthday was spent in Hawaii on vacation.  It just happened to be a good time for Dad to take some vacation from work and for us to fly the family out easily on his United Airlines stand-by passes, but I told everyone in my class we were going for my birthday.  I figured they’d leave me alone about it and just be impressed.

I’m the cute little one in the middle. I believe I was 9 here.

Birthday parties were almost impossible (if your birthday is on Halloween, people want a Halloween themed birthday party, but again, I didn’t celebrate it), so I’ve only ever had two in my whole life, which is also the number of times I ever went trick-or-treating, but not in the same years.

Trick-or-treating at 16. We were a West Virginia couple/siblings and I got to be the husband/brother because I had short hair then.

If anyone would like to help me make up for my lost childhood of birthdays, I will gladly accept candy, checks, or cash.  Please do not send tacky party hats or Hallowbirthdayween cards (I’ve already had a lifetime of those).  I would like for my birthday to be all about ME.  Wow, do I feel better!

Oh, the Horror!

The title probably makes this seem scarier than it actually is, but who cares?  Made you look!

Seriously, I’ve never really been big on the whole Halloween thing.  The day holds something much more important to me and I really do not enjoy gross, scary stuff.  However, that didn’t stop me back in the day (sometime in high school or college) from writing a creepy little something, which I will now share with you.

I went for a walk at midnight, a ghastly hour for a walk by oneself, but a quiet time for thinking as well.  As I walked I saw an open gate in the soft moonlight, inviting me in.  I’d never noticed it before, so I wandered closer and peeked inside.  The yard was of reasonable size.  I decided to continue my walking through the yard, but crept along slowly, for I did not want to disturb anyone.

My neighborhood had been in peril for a few weeks now.  Every other day it seemed another person would disappear.  Nobody I was knew well was missing yet, so I felt fairly safe, for now.  My next door neighbor Mrs. Short, however, had gone shopping one day and not returned.

The moonlight was being eaten up by thick clouds above, and visibility was becoming obscured.  In an instant, I tripped over something and fell.  Not able to figure out my surroundings, I felt around for something to help myself up again.  I suddenly wanted nothing more than to get out of that mysterious yard before I was discovered.

Whatever I had tripped over was cold, stiff, and fleshy.  Slowly, the moonlight began to creep again through the yard, and I found myself holding onto a woman’s arm, reaching out from a mound of dirt.  Two feet away was a stone with the words, “Mrs. Short” engraved on it.  Then a door behind me burst open, and as the light flowed out I could see several headstones in a row, the last one bearing my own name!  As I turned to see who or what had opened the door, the moonlight and artificial light from the house mixed together, glinting off a knife coming towards me.  Then I awoke, safe and sound in my bed.

I know!  What a cop-out, right?  Also, why the heck would anyone take a casual stroll at midnight around a neighborhood where people are disappearing, especially into an unknown yard?  Another reason I cannot watch horror movies…stupid people.  You know what I mean, and if you don’t, please refer to the movie Scream where stupid people in horror movies is discussed.

Speaking of Scream, I must confess exactly how much I do not like being scared. I roomed with my oldest sister for a while during college and we rented the movie, watched it with all the lights on, and kept them all on when we went to bed that night… and maybe even the next night.  It’s okay to laugh.  I know most people do not find that movie very frightening, and it’s really almost more of a dark comedy, but it freaked me out anyway.  This is why Halloween is not my favorite holiday.  I’ll stick to celebrating my birthday that day and making the most out of my upcoming Christmas season.

For those of you who do enjoy Halloween, you may want to check out a video made by my friend.  He holds the secret to killing zombies.