Did you ever go trick-or-treating as a kid? I went once at the ripe old age of thirteen, the only time my father was working the three-to-eleven shift, and my more lenient mother allowed me to go out for a little while with my friends. Turned out, it wasn't all that fun. I'd made myself a sexy (or as sexy as a thirteen-year old gets) Hawaiian outfit. Decorated bra top, crepe paper hula skirt and lei. Looked great until my mother made me put a long-sleeved sweater under the bra top and a coat over top. Oh, and of course, long corduroy pants. Even so, it was cold and windy. Felt like rain, too. Nonetheless, I was determined to squeeze in as much fun as I could, because I pretty much knew that was gonna be my one and only shot at going from door to door giggling with my girlfriends and flirting with our male classmates, while begging for candy. What could possibly go wrong? Turns out, plenty. See, some of my friends, who were pros at Halloween shenanigans, had brought bars of soap and a dozen raw eggs. For, um, vandalizing car windows. Did I participate? Yeah, I may have made a soap squiggle or two. When I got home, someone had likewise vandalized my mother's car. Was she happy? No. Was there smoke curling out of her ears? A little bit. She asked if I'd done any of that to anyone's car. When I admitted I had, she made me wash her car. In the dark. In the cold and windy, felt-like-raining miserable night. It was a lesson I never forgot.
Okay, I didn't mean to go into all that. I meant to be more
Thought for the day: Halloween was confusing. All my life, my parents said, "Never take candy from strangers." And then they dressed me up and said, "Go beg for it." I didn't know what to do! I'd knock on people's doors, and go, "Trick or treat!" "No, thank you." [Rita Rudner]
Okay, I'll stop. (Sorry. Just kidding!)
Do zombies eat popcorn with their fingers? Nope. They always eat the fingers separately.
Okay, I'm not one to lose my head over Halloween decorations, (at least, not any more...) but no bones about it... Happy Halloween, y'all!!!
Didja check the weather forecast and tomorrow's horrorscope to see what kind of evening might be in store for you? Gonna have fettucini a-fraid-o and a nice bottle of boooze for dinner? Or maybe some nice fried poultry-geist?
Okay, I'll stop now. Really.
But in honor of Halloween, we've gotta talk about something scary...
except for the moon. There has to be a big full, pizza pie in the sky kinda moon...
maybe coyotes howling...
and a bunch of hungry buzzards...
No, wait! Forget the buzzards. At my age, the idea of impatient buzzards hanging around is entirely too scary.
But how about... a doll? A haunted doll?
Now, I'm not talking about Chucky, although those movies did scare the bejeezus out of me. Smarticus even claimed I turned into that creepy doll at the stroke of midnight one Valentine's Day, when, in a deep gravelly voice, I oh-so-sweetly suggested...
I WANT CHOCOLATE!!!
But that, of course, was a gross exaggeration. (Hey! I only did it for comic effect. By the way, it worked. I got my chocolate...)
Anyhow, the doll I'm talking about is named Robert. Robert the Doll. (Makes sense...)
Claimed by some to be the creepiest toy in America, the doll was given to Robert Eugene Otto, a well-known Key West artist, in 1906, when he was just a young boy. It was a gift from his nanny shortly after she became his ex-nanny. His voodoo-practicing ex-nanny. The doll she made for the little boy bore a striking resemblance to him, and even had human hair stitched onto its head... hair which had come from the boy's head.
Almost from the start, the doll was... different. The boy had conversations with it... two-way conversations. The family heard creepy giggles. Tiny feet scampering in the night. Schoolchildren claimed to see it move from window to window... watching them as they walked past. Things disappeared, got broken, got moved. And always, the boy claimed, Robert did it. .
Even as an adult, Otto kept the doll nearby, and never painted without Robert sitting beside him. After he got married, he built Robert his own special room in the attic. His wife was spooked by the giggles, sounds of scampering feet, eerie events, and other sounds coming from the attic, and after Otto's death, she moved out, and left the doll behind in the attic, where he continued to spook tenants who rented the house.
Now? Robert resides behind glass in the Fort East Martello Museum in Key West, Florida, where he continues to freak people out, who claim the doll changes expressions. A sign hanging beside him instructs people to only take pictures with Robert's permission. He allegedly gives a little nod to signal his approval. Failure to ask could lead to... a voodoo curse of some kind. I kid you not...
Now THAT'S scary.
Okay, just one more. Know where the goblin threw the football? Over the ghoul line! Y'all have a de-fright-fully boooootiful Halloween.
Wait! But that's not ALL! Last year, after reading this post, our dapper friend Cro Magnon mentioned another peculiar doll in his comments. A doll named Lord Tod Wadley. So I figured I'd tack on a quick addendum about this British doll.
|Joe Carstairs and Wadley [wikipedia]|
Born in London to a very wealthy American heiress in 1900, Marion Barbara "Joe" Carstairs was a tomboy as a child, and as an adult, dressed as a man, had tattooed arms, and loved adventures, machines, and speed. By 1934, she was the fastest female speedboat racer in the world, so she didn't just love speed; she majorly kicked butt in speed competitions. Lord Tod Wadley entered her life in 1925 when one of her girl friends gave the foot-tall leather doll to her, and it became her constant companion. Or maybe I should say he, because Jo certainly thought the doll was more than just a doll. He became her constant companion, and her dearest friend. When publicity photos were taken of her, he had to be included. She had a plaque made to put over top of the door to her flat, which contained both her name and the doll's. She lavished him with expensive gifts: things like special-made clothes and shoes, a working wristwatch, and golf clubs. She had dozens of studio photographs made of him, poems written, and sculptures created in his honor. He was her mascot, her fetish, and her alter ego. "We're like one," she said. "He's me and I'm him. It's a marvelous thing. If everyone had a Wadley, there'd be less sadness in the world." When Joe passed away in 1993, her beloved doll and companion was cremated with her.
Kinda weird, huh? Not exactly scary, but a little bit sad.
Until next time, take care of yourselves. And each other. (Don't eat too much chocolate! Pbbbt...what am I saying? There's no such thing as eating too much chocolate.) Pssst... make sure y'all practice safe hex!