Night of a Thousand Pixie Stix


Now that I'm an adult, it's always interesting to be on the Giving instead of Receiving end of the whole Trick-or-Treating tradition.

First of all, I appreciate being able to actually breathe and see where I'm going; it's still novel.

Secondly, every year there is usually one costume that tends to dominate all others. And today I thought I'd tell you about Halloween 2001...

The doorbell rang and I swallowed up the last bits of a Nutrageous bar, and flung wide the door.

Before me was a wee pink little princess with a pointed hat taller than she was. Her big brother was the psycho from “Scream.”

They were well-trained, this pair. They peered down as Pixie Stix, candy corn and candy bars tumbled into their bag. Yep, they recognized extraordinarily good stash when they saw it. Then they wished me a well-rehearsed, "Happy Halloween."

Scream paused a moment on the stairs, turning. Perhaps it was a brief puzzled expression under his white plastic mask...

Did an adult actually understand the candy hierarchy? One who knew Milk Duds were called Duds for a reason?... That circus peanuts taste neither like peanuts or pureed clowns?... An adult who saw that microscopic-sized candybars and toothbrushes were not in the spirit of proper Halloween plunder?

Had I once been a child like them?

“Nah... Can’t be...” The moment was gone. The next house was calling.

The doorbell rang again moments later to reveal four teenage boys.

Two boys were cleverly disguised as eighth graders. And two were dressed as... Scream. Dueling Screams, these boys, jostling at the door for space.

To costumed and non-costumed alike, I unhesitatingly handed out the goodies. Yes, bring me your tired, your poor, your sugar rushes yearning to be free... I will not discriminate.

They thanked me. It was uncharacteristic politeness that year, and the heart swelled.

Once more with the bell. I greeted a pirate, a second princess, Friday the 13th’s Jason and... Scream.

I was starting to know how Neve Campbell felt. “Deja vuuuuuu!... Do you like Nutrageous Bars, Sidney?”

Another sound of the bell, and before me was a two-year-old rumpled, dirty bumble bee whose bent wings dragged on the ground. Clearly wardrobe malfunctions had ensued early on in the evening. Her mother, a weary-faced woman, trailed behind praying for a quick and merciful end.

Soon I greeted a suave little vampire, Jason Returns, a teeny-tiny blond Superman, and a person two-foot-high who cheerfully proclaimed, “I'm a ninja!”

... A ninja. Yep. You sure are.

Moments later a toddler witch cried at the sight of a monster on my porch, a fellow trick-or-treater, yet perhaps too in-character.

A robot almost couldn't make it up the stairs, his legs so short, his suit so stiff.

And a cowboy, dressing it Old School Retro, was jazzed about the Pixie Stix. So jazzed he almost ran straight into “Scary Movie’s” version of... yes... wait for it...

Scream.

This suddenly explained all the sequels.

But I was having requests. The Pixie Stix dominated and Superman actually gave me back a packet of candy corn for a single Pixie Stick.

Now, on this special night of all nights, I wasn’t particularly worried about give-backs and tradesies-- certainly not for the beloved Man of Steel. But, hey, it’s Kiddom. You gotta play the game by the rules.

I remember.
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30 comments:

Prefers Her Fantasy Life said...

My son was the Scream that year--the bloody Scream with a pump for shooting blood through the mask. I think I made him wear the mask for two years since the cost was somewhat of a minor investment.

Jenn Thorson said...

Meg- Ah, yes... I remember that one. It's when the Scream mask went high tech. :) Ah, kids these days have it so good.

JD at I Do Things said...

I remember the Year of the Scream Costume. Those were actually kind of scary looking.

I loved reading this. Your description of the trick-or-treaters and their costumes is delightful.

JD at I Do Things

Jenn Thorson said...

JD- Oh, thanks a bunch!

I'm all excited to see this year what folks come up with. Even the workers at our grocery store dress in costume for Halloween, so picking up lunch from the salad bar today should be interesting.

ReformingGeek said...

I love Scream! I think I still have my Scream Mask....starting to get ideas for next year's costume. It's also doubled as the Phantom one year.

Jenn Thorson said...

ReformingGeek- There is a certain amount of Scream/Phantom overlap, isn't there? :)

Shirley said...

That was before I had kids! That year I was handing out candy. I had a few kids that I tutored at my apartment and they never saw me dressed up or with make up on. I dressed as Cinderella after the bibidi bobbidy boo lady did her stuff. I had a tiara and everything. The kids in Scream gear came to my door. They were so startled they took the masks off. They brought all the neighborhood kids to my door. The head Screamer says "Look guys she looks pretty!" It was so funny. Like they never saw me in make-up before.

Now, I'm happy to just get three kids out the door and dressing up is out of the question. :)

Jenn Thorson said...

Shirley- Oh, what a cute story! Isn't it funny how you do something out of the ordinary and it's this HUGE deal? I bet the costume looked great. :) What are your kids going as this year?

Creative Junkie said...

Ugh, that Scream costume always gives me the creeps. Not so much when a younger one wears it, but when a 6' eight grader wears it - AACCK.

This year, my husband is taking the girls out and I'm staying home to hand out the candy. I always like to see the costumes, especially the homemade ones! Love to see the creativity that some people can muster - I simply can't. But I do well with dead things - my eldest daughter has been a dead waitress and my other one is a dead bridesmaid this year.

I wonder if that says something about my creativity?

Melanie said...

Yep, I remember the year of the Scream too. we only get about 12-15 kids coming to our door, but two of them were Scream.

I love being the giver of the sugar rush! Last year, the memorable kids were a pheasant hunter, a princess, and the horse that galloped across my garden. LOL! He was trailing far behind the others because he had so much costume to lug around.

Shirley, your story reminds me of the last time I dressed up and went out for Halloween. I went Goth and went down the street to our local watering hole. I had on a plunging neckline. Some guy who I see around quite a bit stood there looking down my shirt, asking "who's the new girl".

Shirley said...

A dragon, unicorn/ pegasus, and a very grumpy giraffe.

Jenn Thorson said...

Creative Junkie- Well, at least in my area growing up, when the six-foot-tall teenager would wear something like the Scream outfit, that would usually mean that kid was prepped to mug other Halloweeners for their candy. So I can see why you might be hesitant.

I think the dead theme you have going on says your creativity knows its audience. :)

Melanie- A pheasant hunter? Now THAT's specific! The horse imagery is very funny. I can hear him saying, "Hey, guys-- wait up, wait up!" muffled from his costume. :)

Shirley- Well, I hope the giraffe starts feeling better about things soon. (snicker)

Jaffer said...

What no Zombies ? Why doesn't any body dress up as Zombie any more ?

:(

Those pre-teen trick or treaters are always so adorable - no matter what they are dressed as !

Thank you for reminding me for not being such a scrooge !

Unfortunately I'll be missing those little urchins tonight as I am going home late tonight :-(

Jenn Thorson said...

Jaffer- Actually, in my area the Zombie Walk at Monroeville Mall just happened. That mall was in one of the scenes from one of the Night of the Living Dead films (I don't actually know which one.) Anyway, every year, the zombies go and walk the mall-- it's fairly creepy and effective.

I'm not going to be doing the handing out candy this year myself, actually, as my front steps need to be reconcreted and are hazardous. I don't want a lawsuit on my hands.

Da Old Man said...

For some reason, I've lived in places that get almost no kids. We've lived here since '94 and have never had more than a dozen. Haven't had even one in the last 3 years.
Where I grew up, we had plenty, but it was a poor area, so the costumes were basically...erm...a hat, and for the ambitious kids, a touch of coal on their face as a fake beard.

Jenn Thorson said...

Da Old Man- I think it's really different in certain areas of Jersey, though. For the longest time growing up, I didn't have any kids in my neighborhood... we had to go down the road a bit to even have anyone remotely my age.

Greg said...

Never had more than a few trick or treaters the last ten years or so...guess we have been off the regular paths, or only recently moved in...so always plenty of candy left over...but I always reward the visits with great handfuls of stuff...

There was a tiny little bumblebee at the bank this morning with her parents...and all the tellers were dressed in canvas sacks marked Federal Reserve Bank, with jughead crowns made of fake fifties.

Chat Blanc said...

wait, are pixie sticks still around?? my inner 7 year old thinks they sound pretty tasty! :)

Jenn Thorson said...

Greg- Ah, I bet the kids LOVE you for the candy handfuls!! Clever ideas for the bank tellers-- if probably personally a bit humiliating.

Chat Blanc- Yup, they're still around. They were the one thing my mother really didn't want me to eat-- right up there with sugar cereals-- so naturally, they were what I wanted above all else! :)

PlantBuddy said...

That's true, I find, kids are usually very polite at the door and nicely thank you for plunking candy in their sacks. Check out my Halloween photos and leave a comment. Thanks.

Babs (Beetle) said...

It's only recently we, in the UK, started to get kids knocking on doors. We buy a large bag of sweets for the occasion now :O)

jay said...

I've never seen Scream, and I have no idea what Pixi stix are (did I spell that right?) but you were obvioulsy a very cool Halloweener!

A friend of mine living in Nashville has no kids, but always dresses up to hand out the goodies! She is always a witch. Striped stockings, lace-trimmed witchie hat and all!

Anna Lefler said...

What a great post! A pleasure... Hope you're enjoying Orange Day.

:^) Anna

chyna said...

I think my year of the Scream was just a few years ago. I do remember thinking "how original". Put me up there with the costume snobs of the world. has to relate to my childhood and wanting to be really unique. hehehe :)

Jenn Thorson said...

PlantBuddy-- Good to hear your Halloweeners, too, are polite. Gives me hope for the future!

Babs- I hadn't realized trick-or-treating had caught on in England yet. I knew fancy dress parties were getting more popular though. Interesting!

Jay- Your friend sounds incredibly cool herself!

Anna- I see you have your mustache-on-a-stick as the perfect costume for every occasion, including Halloween. Have a happy one yourself!

Chyna- Having been one of those kids who didn't have a lot of choice in what costumes Mom made, I figure kids might as well enjoy being whatever they like-- even if it's trendy. You're only young once. :) But there sure are some clever things to be if you put your mind to it.

Did you know, on our news they showed a kid dressed as a toilet?!

Jay said...

Tennessee Jenn? Yeah, she's very cool!

By the way, I tagged you! ;)

~*~Shadow.Crystal~*~ said...

It was really heart-warming to read this post. It's been a long time since I've read anything about children that didn't have a whole "the kids (or parents) aren't alright" theme underlying...

We actually had a little boy (girl?) dressed as Scream this year... along with a dead princess, a live princess (twins, so it was doubly adorable), and several cleverly disguised eighth graders. We don't have many children come by here since we have a questionable driveway, but I make it a point to give them something a bit more substantial than a crappy little chocolate bar. Besides, who wants their windows egged because they were too cheap to give out good candy? ;-)

Jenn Thorson said...

Jay- Oh, my- I will check it out. We'll see if I can figure out a creative way to approach it.

ShadowCrystal- Well, you're right-- there are a lot of stories about the very real problems of kids. But there's a whole strange and fun kid-world out there that I think we as adults sometimes forget. The joy of being a kid was amazing-- also the traumas over little things were so much bigger. I like to write about both.

It's interesting that Scream is still a popular costume after all these years. It sounds like you are a very COOL adult, with your non-teeny candybars.

chyna said...

Lizzie gets to pick out her costumes I just usually make them for her. I did learn my lesson in letting her and daddy pick the pattern though after the mermaid though. No it isn't easy to sew a mermaid costume. :(

She did pick out a fairy costume this year from walmart then I jazzed it up. I just can't leave that stuff alone. LOL

Oh we handed out Play-Doh this year as well as the treats. It was a huge hit with the middle schoolers last year so we did it again. :)

chyna said...

Lizzie gets to pick out her costumes I just usually make them for her. I did learn my lesson in letting her and daddy pick the pattern though after the mermaid though. No it isn't easy to sew a mermaid costume. :(

She did pick out a fairy costume this year from walmart then I jazzed it up. I just can't leave that stuff alone. LOL

Oh we handed out Play-Doh this year as well as the treats. It was a huge hit with the middle schoolers last year so we did it again. :)