Confessions of a Halloween Grinch

Uh oh, it's officially Halloweezy.

I never thought I'd be, well, the person I apparently am. I heard loud knocking on the door and realized there are actually kids in my building (Which was very unexpected. My building is overwhelmingly populated by old gay men, just another humorous turn in Lilly's Life as an Urban Single.) I ran to the cabinet and all we had were 3 lollipops of varying age. One is a Chupa Chup, possibly leftover from Jessica's stint in Europe... in June. I debated shutting off the lights, but then ran to the peephole and counted 3 people - a kid and 2 adults. Did I have enough candy for San Diego's children? Would it be weird to offer them a bag of sour cherries? Apples? IS THIS why people end up giving kids apples on Halloween?

As I drew near the door I heard more Oompa Loompa voices, so I knew there were 3, possibly 4 kids. Potentially our kids, 3 lollipops... what was I to do? I opened my door...but their backs were all to me! They were Trick or Treating across the hall from me.

No one noticed me, so, well... I slid the door back shut. I know! I'm not proud of what I did! I'm SHARING with you. This is a safe space, no? I mean, what was I supposed to do? "Hey, um, I know you're not here for me, but here's some candy because you're so f***ing loud that I heard you across the house." I mean, the kid in me DOES want to reward them for being so loud, but my building also has this weirdo procedure whereby you 'sign up' to be a house kids trick or treat to. I had not signed up, so not only was I off the hook, but really, to get involved in their Halloweezy would have been improper.

So basically I kept the lollipops and they moved on to Twila's house.

I realize this makes me a grinch. I realize this makes me all the old people I hated growing up, who dimmed their lights and, in the case of the N's who lived next door, left us saran-wrapped stacks of ten pennies (did I mention that their house is bigger than God's?). And yes, I realize that even that -- saran-wrapped dirty coinage -- would have been better than our worn-out Chupa Chups. Or nothing. And yes, Michael Jackson, I'm taking a look at the man in the mirror. I'm asking her to change her ways.

Next year.


It's about that time again. Holiday season has officially begun. It goes like this: Halloweezy (today), then a week of chocolate-induced coma, then it's my birthday, then we begin planning for Thanksgiving weekend. Then it's pretty much December and who works in December? (Certainly not publishers, I have learned), and then it's Christmas and New Year's. Happy Holidays!

The past few years I haven't been that into dressing up for Halloween. The story is that a couple of years ago Anj and I did it up and dressed as a white trash couple. I was in American flag Jamz (yes, Jamz), a black tee shirt with "mullet" written in studs, a blonde mullet to go with said shirt, blue eyeshadow, bright pink lipstick, and missing teeth (black dental wax). Anj was my male counterpart, dressed in sweatpants, a wifebeater, a beer belly, a slight boner (courtesy of a toilet paper roll), missing teeth, and a black eye. It was classic. On that night I got hit on more than any other night arguably in my life. I was later told that "no girl who was actually ugly would dress like this, so people just figure you must be really hot under there." Good strategy for future years! Take THAT, slutty nurses!

That Halloween was one of the most fun I've ever had and, fearing not being able to top that, I have backed off of the holiday. This year, if I dress up, I will do the Amy Winehouse. Granted, a more curvaceous version than the original, but sugar high will probably keep people from noticing. I've been practicing her hair for months now.

Halloween is fun times. I am trying to remember today various costumes I've had. During my childhood my mom got really into Halloween and would take her artistic skills to all-new levels, in costuming worthy of an Oscar award. When I was a witch I wasn't just wearing some dinky pointed hat. I was full-on stage makeup-ed. Other years included less imaginative fare: a Native American (which only later would I realize was probably offensive, but I made a really convincing one), Kris Kross (that was in college. I was just really in the mood to put my hair in braids and wear my pants down low), and a gypsy. Typical fare.

But in what must have been her costuming coup, one year mom dressed me up as Marie Antoinette (that year, mom put a mannequin bust over me and cut out an eyehole and then put an antique chiffon dress over the mannequin so I was a 5'6 headless woman walking down the street with blood dripping down my neck).

Halloween reminds me of years of trick or treating with friends. Hearing about the shaving cream fights on Stonegate. Getting drugged one year in our Reese's Peanut Butter Cups (my friends and I ended up having a seance to connect with George Washington before our Constitution test and all ended up crying and having to be picked up early by our parents). Ah, fun times all around.

Hm, although I'm totally not in the mood to care this year, something feels like there is just tradition to uphold. I'm not one to shun tradition, certainly not when it involves chocolate...

The Joys of Old Age

Ok, so I've been quiet on the blog posting front. This lil birthday of mine (pun intended) is looming over me a bit larger than previously expected. I kept saying I'd have fun with turning 30 and that it would be cool because i don't LOOK 30, something people are likely to point out every single time I tell them my age from now on (thus providing me with a constant source of compliments). For some reason, though, I'm low-energy (not to be confused with depressed) about it. What if old age is setting in? We've already discussed my 3 grey hairs. And my metabolism is slowing down. Lately I've been going to bed REALLY early. Suspicious, no? I already forget things (right Susie?!) that aren't Madonna lyrics. I'm on a sliding slope, only this time it's not Mount Trashmore and Susie and I aren't in our cute ugly little snowsuits.

And I'm such a freakin list maker, that now there is this pressure on me to figure out what I want to accomplish in my 30s. I make lists ALL the time. Before typing this I made a list of things I need to do tomorrow. Every day I write some of the same tasks: "Work out" "water plants". I might as well write "brush teeth" "check email", but it provides a certain "je ne sais quoi mais je pense que c'est comme OCD" to my days. The good news is that I can't think of much I wanted to do in my 20s that I didn't do, so there aren't any "carry overs" from my 20s, which, as any list-maker knows, makes list-making easier. I mean, I just saw The Nightmare Before Christmas in 3d, so I think I've really done everything that could be expected of my youth.

I think there's just this seriousness setting over me -- I keep trying to swat it away, but it's there! So I've just been quiet trying to figure out how to recover my irresponsible, constantly laughing youth. It's around here somewhere. I'm not done with it yet!

In the meantime I am going to read in bed. If anyone is wondering what to get me for my birthday, feel free to bolster my geriatric lifestyle with the purchase of the clapper.

(clap off)

(and yes, Susie, I promise to post more)

Gone Fishing

Last night, after grabbing drinks with my friend and eating a bite, I figured I'd stop by home and visit my parents. I opened the door to them in the traditional layout: Mom lying on the couch to my right, Dad sitting up at a perfect 90 degree angle (yoga teachers everywhere rejoice!), eating peanuts from a jar. They were watching a Lifetime movie.

When I was done laughing I sat down with them. We chit chatted about how disgusting I thought meat was, how ridiculous it was that they would actually watch Lifetime ("Is that the girl from Night Court?"), and how great it was to see me (ok, that last bit didn't happen, but it should have!). I started to get really hungry, having concentrated more on the 'drinking' part of my evening with my friend than the 'dining' part. So I went in to the kitchen to have toast and cream cheese (homage to my Dad, it being one of his four food groups. The other three are "salad", "hot dogs!!!!" and "ramen noodles". The exclamation points are his.) I hung around just chatting with my parents and noticed that my mom had been more quiet than usual. My dad and I were discussing which of his magazines I wanted to take off his hands (you really never can get enough of Fortune), what I thought of Fast Food Nation, and what a mess was going to happen between the US and Turkey. Now, don't get me wrong, my mom can hang with the best of them in chit chat, but there was clearly something on her mind.

She circled around me, preparing tea.

Unable to contain herself anymore, she burst out "So, what happened? Last time you were talking to three or four guys! What's going on?" I smiled (because toast and cream cheese is really underrated) and told her the truth. When it rains, it pours. Right now I am experiencing. I responded. "Nothing."




"Nothing." (Another smile, but this time I admittedly might have just been doing it to be irritating)

"You are a...."



I know. I know. I had no idea what that meant either. But it was apparently the perfect word for me. She explained "You fish, you catch, you THROW THEM BACK!" This was delivered in a tone of even parts humor and dismay. Starving people don't throw away food, ya know? We didn't really get into it (well, partly because there was nothing to talk about and partly because it's more flattering to have your mom think you are the one turning men away in hordes than to tell her the simple truth that some things just fade. And some guys don't call!)

Well, at least there's a word for me now. It may not be a real word, but hey, how many people have words made up just for them? Tacklefisher. It's got a nice ring to it. And it sounds better than spinster any day.

Don't Forget to Brush!

I'd like to poll the audience.

Lately a few of my friends have dealt with situations where they were hanging out/crashing somewhere with someone they were romantically linked to, and that person offered a toothbrush. Seems sweet, right? "Oh, you have a spare!" Perfect. But, as it turned out, said lover was offering them THEIR toothbrush.

I really think this is something Gallup needs to poll Americans on, because what has blown my mind- more than the fact that this has happened ONCE to someone- is that it appears to be widespread!

It's true.

As soon as I heard about this phenomenon, I had to ask some other people. One to pad my jury, I quickly summoned my friends in the sciences. I mean, if nothing else, DOCTORS would think it was stank to do, right?

Not right.

One of the girls (who, granted, is not yet a doctor, but is working at a hospital) said that she and her boyfriend share toothbrushes so much that when she goes to visit him for a weekend she doesn't even bring her own toothbrush. Gag me with a Sonicare. Seriously people?!

What surprised me even more than this disappointing poll was the fact that my respondees seemed dismayed that I"m NOT a toothbrush sharer! Like I was the gross one! People, I am a dentist's daughter. It pains me not to brush the old pearly whites, but if it's a question of borrowing your toothbrush after you've played Pad Thai Symphony on it, it's a hell to the no. A no-brainer.

These same respondents tried to convince me (and my equally disgusted compatriots) that if you've kissed someone, it's the same thing. Um, no it isn't. Don't make me insert a toilet paper analogy here.

Here are my thoughts, in case you haven't guessed them: Sharing a toothbrush is grody. Would you share floss? No! How much cleaner are your teeth really getting? That's right, they're not! The brushee is just methodologically applying the plaque of their beloved to their own teeth. Ew. That makes me want to vomit.

It's well known that if you don't have your toothbrush then you're supposed to FINGER brush, duh! Or you rinse multiple times with Listerine. Do what you need to do, but no share-y-share-y. It's like sharing underoos, and you don't do that with your boyfriend... do you? As a wise friend pointed out this week, "let's say you're camping, like really really stuck. Just brush with bark! Wintergreen bristles! That's how they used to do it!"

I believe popular media backs me up on this (although, given the overwhelming responses pro-sharing, we could see this change. Saatchi & Saatchi beware!) I mean, HOW many toothpaste/mouthwash commercials have you seen? The couples banter as they brush and get ready. You don't see her brush and then rinse it off and hand it to him. Not a once.

We live in a first world nation. Act like it.

People, friends, colleagues, enemies -- I have come to realize that I am in the minority who find this a disturbing trend. I have to ask that even if you DO this, you and your little partner in crime need to decide here and now not to IPO (make public) that shit. Because even if you do it, I don't want to hear about it. Not even if I ask. I don't want to hear about what goes on in your bedroom and I don't want to hear what goes on in your bathroom either.

Dear marketing folks: I am available as a spokesperson for the "One Person, One Toothbrush" campaign. Crest? Colgate? Mentadent? I'm not picky.

-- The Dentist's Daughter Has Spoken.

DEDICATION: To my roomie4eva, Az, my faithful reader who even places threatening phonecalls when I don't post frequently enough.

Said dedication is revokable upon proof of toothbrush-sharing, naturally. -L