October is finally here and Halloween will be upon us before we know it. I believe I started seeing the first Halloween items in the stores during the last week of July. I’m not going to take up any space here to debate whether or not that’s too early. Instead, I’d like to take you back to a fond Halloween memory of mine from the past.
I’m 41 years old. To save you all the math, that put me at prime trick-or-treating age during the late 1970s. While that certainly wasn’t ages ago, I imagine it will be well before a number of you were born.
Back then you didn’t see any signs of Halloween until you were within the month of October. As a kid, I knew it was coming but there was one sure sign that I always looked for. I would accompany my father to Dox Drug Store in Rochester, NY. Normally, this would be in hopes of getting a comic book, candy bar, or perhaps some oddity like Mexican Jumping Beans (which were often on display next to the register). In October, however, I was looking for the Ben Cooper Costumes display.
Every year, without fail, the entire front of the store would be taken up with a wall of colorful boxes. Masks depicting the likeness of the most popular characters of the day peered out through cellophane windows in each. I’m sure you’ve seen them before, even if you’re younger. They were the ones with the inexpensive plastic masks, held onto your head with an elastic band and included vinyl smocks to wear.
Ironically enough, my mother always made my costumes by hand. However the sight of the Ben Cooper Costume display told me that without a doubt, my favorite holiday was right around the corner.
I’ve been tinkering with this blog for a couple of months now and have crossed paths with a lot of you folks in the process. I guess for me, this is my new sign that Halloween is fast approaching.