A Modified Halloween During the Year of 2020



It was the Halloween that almost wasn’t. That is the title of a very old movie featured on the Disney Channel during my childhood that was made in the late 1970s, if memory serves me correctly. But Halloween still WAS this with modifications will hopefully disappear next year if things go back to normal!

As a child growing up with a prominent case of then-undiagnosed Asperger’s syndrome, Halloween was the only day of the year when it was a little bit more “normal” to act extremely “weird.” I think it is a cherished day for the transgender population because they were able to dress up as the opposite gender and fit in quite nicely for one day of heavenly mercy. As a child I depended on Halloween and was even a little bitter that it had to be completely skipped at the age of 15 to attend the Friday night service of my sister, Dena before her Bat Mitzvah the next day. I wonder how the reaction would have been if I had been told that trick-or-treating had to be skipped at the age of 9 when I was not emotionally mature enough to understand that it had to be done for the sake of avoiding a pandemic. It would have seemed like the end of the whole world. At age 31, I finally stopped going trick-or-treating, which was hard because it was the last ritual I was able to hold onto for dear life and milk to the point of oblivion in which I was seduced by the haze of childhood wonder.

This Halloween was incredible because of the fact that I paid a fee to attend a virtual performance of EPIC Players for an hour-and-a-half in which performers with disabilities showed off their talents on Zoom. All of the classics were in front of me such as “The Time Warp and even good old “Beetlejuice” songs from the Broadway Show and movie. There were even celebrity cameos from famous actresses such as Julianne Moore Kathy Najimy. The show raised fifteen thousand dollars to support professional performers with developmental disabilities such as autism spectrum disorders and Down Syndrome, but all are welcome. The night ended with me writing this entry in real-time while Halloween is still present and accounted for before the stroke of midnight. Furthermore, I prepared a small Halloween card and gift for my neighbors upstairs and their three gimlet-eyed kitty cats.

For a child who believes that missing Trick-or-Treating is the worst thing that could happen, I am hoping the adults in their lives are going to make the show go on to the best of their ability. The many things that will replace the collection of candy will make trick-or-treating seem like a silly thing to cry over because the abundance of other cool stuff would not have happened otherwise. We must replace disappointment with a brand-new plan that will steal the show.

The other nice thing that happened to me this Halloween was getting to dress up in my Batman costume that was purchased for thirty dollars off of Amazon.com. I walked around in public with that thing bearing a lifetime of Halloween fantasy and even helped one of the ladies upstairs take a heavy box to her apartment like a real-life superhero. The photograph that I have chosen to use for this blog entry is the gift that I created for them and the small kitty cats. It was also a very early Christmas gift in which there is a couple of raised bowls that will help with the cat’s digestion and create less vomiting, which is common when cats eat too fast or in the wrong position. Halloween did not work out as I have been used to for the previous 37 Halloweens, but it was still ghoulishly great in more ways than one. It works out like that sometimes when the original plans we depend on are obliterated without compromise!



Love, Jesse (a.k.a. The Ghastly Sketch)

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