Black Cats and Bad Boo

I felt safe holding my Daddy’s hand while we marched up and down Collis Avenue for hours that seemed like minutes; ecstasy was timeless…for a night I was Casper the Friendly Ghost, darkness had become my accomplice, fantasy was my salvation.

Displaced to the hills of Hollywood it was 1962; steep asphalt grades and rumors of LSD laced candy and razor-blade laden apples, prevented our candy drive that year.

Four seasons gone by, we’d become comfortable in our Lake Hollywood Pink House; Mom enrolled in the PTA and Pops had become a Lion; our caretakers opted to keep up with the Ginsbergs…with pillow cases in tow, and Mardi Gras appointments flowing, not a goblin was ignored; our sacks brimmed full with Hershey bars, Brach taffies, Sweet Tarts and candy corn; not a dentist would go hungry.

Later came the onset of pubic hair and pimples; my candy collecting guise became perfect camouflage for a night of demolition and destruction…exchanging an empty pillow case for fully loaded quiver, I entered dusk with rotten eggs, cherry bombs, toilet paper and bleach; vandalism would be my perfect medium…softening teenage anger and maladjustment.

A spell of the fall flu bug the following year, I was in my cups; ding dong and knock-knock were as close as I got, while stretched out, nearly comatose, on the living room couch; I could barely lift my head, and that year, our neighborhood was safe

When I traded sabotage for sensual seduction, the sweets I sought lay beneath Kelly Franzelli’s Maiden Form bra, my tricks and treats had become seemingly endless, teenage-hard arousal.

1974 was brought a bumper crop of protests, wire tapings, Bebe Rebozo, and the like; Orange Sunshine was my new Jack-o-lantern…my lights were turned down and Pink Floyd’s “Dark Side of the Moon” played like a soft parade…shhhssss

The next thing I knew, it was 1976, the curtains were drawn, a solitary candle flickered and burned; only the faint sound of a razor’s sharp clicking edge on a shiny mirror could be heard; candy was no longer swallowed but taken in the nose, and nobody was home to answer the door or the phone… that Halloween, only my skin crept and crawled