Happy Halloween

Yup, I love Halloween. It’s silly, it’s goofy, it’s creative. It involves devilish amounts of candy. What’s better than that?

This past weekend, lots of kiddies in my neighborhood (socialites that they are) were making their rounds to Halloween pre-parties. I spotted a bumblebee, a tiny Sponge Bob, and a few impressive action heroes I wasn’t up-to-date enough on my cartoons to identify. I saw a father dressed as a king and a mom dressed as a cat. This, in my opinion, is a beautiful thing.

I have some big costume plans for Friday…I just have to work out a few kinks. Okay, I still have to work out all the kinks. First, it was essential that I carved my joc-o-lantern (see above).

Of course, this time of year, I’m forced to think about Halloweens gone by. A skating friend and I were talking over the phone about what costumes her three kids are going to wear – Peter Pan, Hello Kitty, and a Pirate. This led us to the topic of Halloween-past and she revealed that in 4th Grade, she dressed up as a Skating Instructor. She carried a clipboard and wore her skates (with guards) around school all day! Now that’s an homage.   

One of my fondest (and maybe funniest) Halloween memories took place at the Madison Ice Arena when I was little. The Figure Skating Club of Madison’s Halloween party that year was going to be a club fundraiser, a Skate-a-Thon for which we were supposed to get sponsors to donate something like 10 cents for every lap we could skate around the rink.

I was personally thrilled with this idea, since we would be doing our laps in costume. My older brother was pleased as well, albeit for different reasons. In several ways, he had already proven himself to be quite a businessman, so he threw himself wholeheartedly into raising money.

Sure enough, he got tons of sponsors. With his help, I also got a few, though my primary focus was really on the costumes. We were going to be Popeye and Olive Oyl. This was mostly our mother’s idea (and it was/is important to ignore the fact that they were a romantic “couple”), but I was delighted and my brother went along with it, probably figuring there were worse get-ups we could foist on him. (And, wow, was he right…oh the skating outfits I would end up forcing him to wear.)     

In order to make Brad’s arms look cartoonishly muscular, our mom cut up a pair of my old ballet tights and stuffed them with mounds of cotton for him to wear like sleeves. She then embroidered an anchor tattoo on one arm with yarn. She found him a pipe and a sailor hat.

I wore my hair in a low bun and Olive Oyl’s iconic black and white striped tights with a red sweater and a black skirt. Even though my mother’s big red, clip-on earrings pinched my ears numb, I loved them.

When we arrived at the party, I remember that everybody had a good chuckle over our costumes. My brother immediately sat down to lace up his skates and I bee-lined for a table displaying an assortment of orange and black cupcakes.   

Though my brother was not necessarily the fastest skater in the club at that point, he was determined to do more laps than anyone else. While the rest of us skated around at a medium clip, blabbing about nothing in particular, he leaned forward like a speedskater, in order to make himself more aerodynamic. With a grin on his face, he of course skated circles around the rest of us, literally, and raised lots of money, all the while holding a can of spinach.


How about you? Any good Halloween memories? What are you going to “be” (such an existential question) this weekend? Click on “comment” below. I promise I won’t steal your idea. Then again…if you’re in a different state, or on a different continent, or even in a different borough, would it really matter? Come on…

And if you want to see some fab Manhattan decorations as identified by The Informer (me), Click here.



  1. strats · October 28, 2008

    your joc-o-lantern is a work of art!!!

  2. Bluto · October 28, 2008

    Any holiday that features candy in a prominent role has to be a good one.

  3. june · October 28, 2008

    OK, that is a nice photo of a pumpkin but what about a picture of you as Olive Oil and Popeye in your costumes???

  4. J. walker · October 28, 2008

    Really like the skate joc-o-lantern. It’s a great fun time for ALL.

  5. Jenn · October 28, 2008

    I have my choices narrowed down to Cleopatra or a Firewoman. I better get to the costume store! Nothing quite as creative as ballet tights on the arms!

  6. Jason · October 28, 2008

    Yes. Let’s see a photo from Madison! 🙂

  7. BA · October 29, 2008

    We DEF need to see a photo from Madison!!!! LOVE IT!!!!!!!!!

  8. Mrs Redboots · October 29, 2008

    I don’t “do” Halloween – it’s not big here, thankfully, and I have issues with it. However, we once did a fundraiser at our rink for a telethon called Red Nose Day, where we all dressed up in red, and offered face-painting and a really long chain of skaters round the rink (led by a then-small girl in a wheelchair); it was fun and we raised lots of money!

  9. Lori Lee · October 29, 2008

    The rink informs me that Learn to Skate on Saturday will a costumed event…….maybe you can lend me one of your (or Brad’s) old costumes?

  10. LP skater · October 29, 2008

    I’m going to be chaperoning a High School Halloween party; sounds like fun! I was considering going to school as a “dead” figure skater (my friend suggested adding the “dead” element), but since I am in college now, I decided this might not be the best idea.So I am going to be Myself instead!! 🙂

  11. Martina · October 30, 2008

    I second the request…let’s see the photo? Surely Mom knows where it is:-)

    Happy Hollows Eve to you and everyone spooky!


  12. Aaron · October 31, 2008

    In regards to the story above…love that the 2nd person to comment on it was “Bluto!” Perfect!

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