“Trick or Treat!”
There were six of them lined up, bags and buckets ready and waiting for the goodies. “Sorry kids, I just ran out. The trick or treaters that were just here got the last of my candy.”
“What? You jerk! You can’t run out of candy on Halloween.”
I couldn’t help chuckling, which only irritated them more. “Sorry, kids. It’s all gone.”
“Yeah? How much would be left if you hadn’t been eating handfuls of it yourself?”
“Happy Halloween,” I said as I shut the door on them.
I had the feeling that these brash little brats might be planning something, so I listened closely to the conversation that was taking place on my porch. Boy, was I right.
“We’ve got to do something about this.”
“Let’s egg his house.”
“No way, man, look at this place. He might not even notice.”
“So let’s TP his yard.”
“Are you kidding? Didn’t you see that guy? He’d probably wait for the next rain to knock it all off the trees for him.”
“So what do we do?”
Well that wasn’t so bad. I just had to wait and steel myself for whatever the imaginations of six kids could come up with. There’s really not a whole lot that scares me anymore. There are things that bother me, annoy me, sicken me and anger me, but there’s not a lot that scares me. I couldn’t imagine any costume putting a tremor into me no matter how convincing it looked.
At first it seemed I was right. When the kids came back the first time they were dressed as vampires. They were outstanding costumes, the best I’d seen in years. Maybe the best I’d ever seen. If I hadn’t known to expect these kids, I probably wouldn’t have known it was them. As it was, I couldn’t help laughing. “Vampires? Kids, come on, don’t you watch any TV or movies? Vampires haven’t been scary for years.”
“Oh darn. He’s right. Let’s go.”
They were determined though. Vampires didn’t work, so they came back as zombies. The makeup was horrifyingly realistic. There was ooze and rotting flesh along with creepy moans and even a stench like they were decaying. I didn’t laugh, but I sure wasn’t scared. “That’s impressive, but it isn’t working. See, I’m the guy who survives the horror film. Try again, twerps.”
They did try again. They came back as werewolves, demons, ghosts, pop stars, skeletons, and aliens. Not even the I.R.S. agent costumes really scared me. It looked hopeless for them. I settled in to watch some movies. I wasn’t even concerned that the doorbell was going to keep ringing. I was enjoying this.
Then it happened. On their next try the vicious little crawlers managed to truly terrify me. The doorbell rang, and I was already smiling. Once I saw them, I saw that the past and the future were one and the same. I was trembling uncontrollably at the familiar faces that greeted me. These kids had made themselves into spitting images of George W. Bush, Al Gore, John Kerry, Barack Obama, John McCain and Mitt Romney! With one greedy and cheerful tone, they shouted, “We’re the best the country has to offer!”
I screamed at a higher pitch than I would have thought possible. I staggered backwards as they advanced menacingly. “Keep voting for third party candidates! It won’t help! America will never learn!”
I screamed again. It was a nightmare, one that I had been stuck in for years. I almost got ahold of myself, but they told me, “You can look forward to more of the same. If it isn’t us, it won’t matter! You won’t be able to tell the difference!”
I could see America settling in for more and more double terms of static power abuse. I couldn’t take it. I passed out. When I awoke much later, I realized that even though it was just those kids again, the nightmare was real. Making it worse, those sick little larva stole a package of Oreos to make up for the candy I didn’t have.