Behind the Mask
The week of Halloween is a most awkward time for me because I am not a Halloween kind of guy. I want to be, I see everyone else planning their costumes for a month in advance, and I know that there will be a number of gatherings from which to select, were I to choose to be a part of it.
It really doesn’t have anything to do with choice, though, because the core of my unenthusiastic approach has been ingrained in me since age ten, when I came under the grip of panic attack syndrome, a malady of which I have fortunately been able to rid myself recently.
I have prattled on enough about the ramifications of anxiety issues, that I need not go further into detail, except to note that the source of my anxiety when it comes to Halloween, is the fact that I am still dramatically impacted, negatively, by the entire genre of horror movies or any kind of creepy visual material.
A huge component is the fact that one thing that used to trigger panic attacks was the unexpected. Well, not coincidentally, scary movies thrive on the unexpected-it gets the adrenalin flowing. I found out long ago, while encountering difficulty with conventional social functions, that Halloween parties exacerbate my anxiety issues twofold, simply because when I do not know who is behind the mask, I panic.
Ironically, my teaching partner back in the day, Mr. Poulton, was completely absorbed by the autumn holiday, so we did the annual Halloween party at the middle school. It helped immensely that Annie is also a Halloween enthusiast, so that helped balance my lack of knowledge or experience in these matters.
The haunted house we set up the first year I taught was off-the-charts cool, even if I was unable to appreciate the finer points myself.
Now as I scroll on face/book, so many folks are engaged in preparations for the 31st, it is apparent this will be an especially exciting Halloween, what with the bright moon and it being Saturday night and all.
I trust everyone will have a most enjoyable Halloween, just as I will myself, except that I will be home ensconced in front of the television set.
Fortunately for me, there is a World Series game on between the Mets and the Royals.