Thursday, October 28, 2010

My only Halloween story

Another submission from my life story, a class exercise.

Surely I was seven, if not eight, when my parents and I picked out my Halloween costume: Little Bo Peep. Yes, there were ready-made costumes even then. It’s a good thing, because neither my mother nor my grandmother was much in the sewing line. It was beautiful, with a little flat hat trimmed in lace. Alas, we made this decision too soon, because one day I took my costume down from the shelf where it was being kept safe, looked at it, and in a rush of despair thought, “Why did I ever want to be Little Bo Peep? All I’ve ever wanted to be was a fairy princess!”

There was an invisible “no whining” sign in my family, and I knew the rules. There was no way to complain and demand a refund. So I dreamed of the perfect fairy princess costume, and I’m quite sure I prayed. This was undoubtedly the first of many spiritual crises. Each day I looked in the closet, and the costume remained steadfastly Bo Peep.

What an anticlimactic ending; I have no recollection of Halloween that year. People must have said, “Oh, what a sweet Bo Peep,” and I must have gritted my teeth and said “Thank you.” I no doubt enjoyed the candy, which might have included a popcorn ball or two in that pre-razorblade era. But there was no joy, no joy at all.

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