If you are looking for my November column, this is it. Yes, I am celebrating Halloween in November!! Move over Tom Turkey!! I write for The Kaw Valley Senior Monthly and it just so happens that with printing and mailing schedules, this month’s column landed on doorsteps and in inboxes on Halloween!! It was only fitting I write a spook-tacular piece so goofy it lasts ’til Thanksgiving.Enjoy!!
Early one Halloween night I was nursing a soft drink in a back booth at The Enchantment. That’s a dingy roadhouse north of here. I was on my second bottle of pop when Kaybe rolled up.
KB 11.2 (Kaybe for short) is my alien friend from outer space. He looks like a giant tuna fish can. Erector Set arms sprout from the curved sides of his body. Three spindly legs drop from the flat underside of his stainless steel torso. He has ball bearing wheels for feet, and three sensor-eyes wave at you from the ends of floppy antennae on the top of his lid. Kaybe eats drinks and communicates telepathically.
No one at the Enchantment even looks up when Kaybe rolls in. If fact, some of the patrons, including Harry the Hulk and his diminutive pal Miniature Mike, are also aliens from outer space. So is the waitress, Four Finger Fanny.
Kaybe gave me a telepathic “hi,” and joined me.
“Kaybe, where’ve you been?” I asked.
“Doing some business in a galaxy far away.”
“Well I’m glad you’re back. Let me buy you a drink. Fanny, please bring Kaybe a Sarsaparilla.”
Just then four costumed customers walked in and sat down at a booth near us. There was a green-faced witch wearing a pointy black hat; a short, potbellied Frankenstein monster with a realistic looking bolt in his neck; a realistic looking Chewbacca, and an aging Princess Leia.
With all three eyes, Kaybe stared at the newcomers.
“What galaxy are they from?” he asked.
“Those are earthlings,” I said. “It’s Halloween. Those folks are just wearing costumes.”
“Is it some kind of holiday?” Kaybe asked.
“Yes. It used to be called “All Hallows Eve,” and was started to honor the dead. Nowadays children dress up in costumes and go door to door saying ‘Trick or Treat’ and hold out sacks. People give them candy. After people put candy in their sacks, the kids run to the next house. They go all over the neighborhood gathering sacks full of candy.”
“The folks in that booth over there look pretty old to do trick or treat,” said Kaybe.
“Halloween has evolved, and now adults celebrate Halloween too. They put on costumes and go to parties, or out to bars and restaurants.
“WOW!” said Kaybe. The words appeared telepathically in capital letters in my head. “That sounds like fun. I’ve always wanted to go around town and see the sights, but the way I look I’d cause a fuss. Tonight I can roll around and no one will think anything about it.”
“Hey guys,” Kaybe communicated telepathically with Harry the Hulk and Miniature Mike and three strange-looking aliens in the bar. “Let’s go trick or treating.”
“Will you be our guide?” Kaybe asked.
“Of course. Parents take their kids trick or treating. The parents stand out on the sidewalk while the kids go up to the doors.”
“You want to go trick or treating, Fanny?” called Miniature Mike.
“No,” she called back. “I’m still on duty. Beside my feet hurt. But you can take my truck.” Fanny tossed me the keys. “It’s the old blue pickup in the back corner of the parking lot.”
I boosted Kaybe into the passenger seat, and the others jumped in the back of the truck. I drove by a supermarket and picked up trick or treat sacks for everyone. When we got there, my neighborhood was awash with goblins, ghosts and phantoms.
My alien friends were shy at first, but Kaybe encouraged them.
“Come on guys. This will be fun.”
At the first house, I stood out on the sidewalk. Harry the Hulk put Miniature Mike on his shoulders and marched up and rang the bell. Kaybe and the other aliens crowded on the steps behind him.
A woman came to the door.
“Trick or treat,” said Harry the Hulk.
“Wait just a minute,” said the woman. “George,” she yelled, You’ve got to see this. These are the best costumes I’ve seen all night.” -30-
Dr. Larry Day is a retired foreign correspondent and KU J-School professor. He is now the author of countless short stories and the author of Day Dreaming: Tales From the Fourth Dementia. http://www.daydreaming.co