Field Trippin’: Part 2

Rats and human bones

Yeah, the whole trip felt like that . . .

Of all the nonsense that befell Unity over the following months, nothing frightened me more than the sight of the kids stumbling to the edge of the highway, ready to play Frogger with speeding yuppies from Kingsmill and weekend historians.

The man behind us shouting on his cell had already called the police by the time we left the deli.  Ms. Jane was screaming for the kids to return when he noticed us.  Ms. P and Catherine were still buying snacks on the opposite end of the plaza.  Sporting a greasy comb-over and a haunting odor of Axe body spray, the man – who I will forever christen as Little Pesci – addressed me first, obviously mistaking me for the leader of educational band; although it was Ms. Jane who answered.

“Are those your children?” he asked.  He had this way of saying ‘your’ like an old woman in a Pollyanna movie, as if only the children’s guardians would possibly summon a pack of middle school students from rushing headlong into traffic and playing dodgeball with a Buick. That fact that he happened to be right only proved the guy was a total prick as well as an idiot. Continue reading

Delayed by Destiny

Many apologies for the absence of posts lately.  In my effort to see my name in print, I’ve been writing non-stop, adding some finishing touches on some of my short stories.  In some cases, the damage is minimal: a little spackle here, a new coat of paint, repair some dangling participles, done.   For others, the internal structure was a mess, infested with confusing plot, ambiguous characters, and one rather egregious split infinitive.

Anyway, if any of you can direct me to some admirable sci-fi/fantasy magazines, I’d highly appreciate it.  Ample thanks and Dasad’s first-born child will be yours.

Seeing as we’re nearing Halloween, I thought to share a little Lux Aeterna with you though until I manage to get my act together.  I’m still a little shaky on my costume this year but might take a page from Jim during this evening’s  Office.  BookFace: the popular social-networking site!

The horror . . .

As usual, Halloween this year arrived unexpectedly. Though one of my favorite holidays, I can never welcome the holiday as it deserves: scary stories, rented horror flicks, and enough carved pumpkins to illuminate a landing strip. Such traditions fill out the holiday like a good meal can fill out a pair of trousers. If I had my way, October should be dedicated to stories. Nothing but reading and listening to great tales, particularly with the kids. By November, children’s brains should percholate with any assortment of evil monsters, brave heroes, mysterious places, whimsical names, and cracklin’ leaves so that the whole month passes without a trace of homework-inducing melancholy (my bookbag in November typically reeked with such large projects and long papers that I felt tethered indoors to my desk for weeks). Sadly again two short papers chained me to the computer Halloween night, thus delaying my plans another year. Yet after scribbling a few paragraphs, I conceeded to the howl of wind and eye of moon and went searching through our bins for a make-shift costume for my uncle’s Halloween party.

As you may or may not know, the actual costume for Halloween parties matters little. I once attended a birthday party just before Halloween at one of the city’s bars, where the female attendees wore cat ears or devil horns and little else but a few scraps of rags. It was quite a show (only days later did my eyes slink back to their normal positions within their sockets), proving that oddity, excentricity, and a little less dignity are the only requirements for any costume. Yet being fond of riddles and self-humiliation, I strove to piece together an interesting and unique costume, something different from the norm, and thus dove into our collection of old hoods, masks, and fangs.

In years past this technique has met with various degrees of success. Once Pat clad himself in a short striped T-shirt, dark glasses, fake red hair, and a tall Seussical top hat. With his skinny frame and recent girlfriend-induced gut peeking from under his shirt, he somehow pulled off a drunken British rocker simply by mixing and matching bits of old costumes. Ryan raided Katie’s closet for dresses, wigs, high heels, and socks to stuff down his shirt — he wanted to be quite volumptuous. Candy he called himself. Personally I cannot recall which was funnier: seeing his chest sag under the weight or watching Dad’s face when Candy leapt up into his arms to plant a huge lipstick-stained kiss.

This year I was going to outperform them all. Choosing a mermaid tail, which I partially stuffed with towels (for definition) and shoved under a worn knit cap, I wrapped my body with white towels. The mermaid tale effectively poking out from under my cap, I found clean green shirt, which I crumpled and piled onto a dinner plate. A spicy tuna wrap with wasabe. Perfect.

My Costume
Throughout the entire night, nobody could guess my costume. Looking back now at these pictures, I realize that the confusion stemmed from my haphazard creation of two costumes in one. Like those illusions of two faces that upon refocusing transform into a candlestick, my costume too transformed depending on your perspective. At one point, I could be a spicy tuna wrap with wasabe, and any other time, I became the buffoon in a bathtowel — with the fish growing out of his ear. Oh, just wait until next year . . .

The horror . . .