It's the day after Halloween, and my Facebook feed is clogged with photos of adorable children in their Halloween finery. I've never met the vast majority of them, but if I look closely I can sometimes see their parents in the way they hold their head or how their eyes crinkle when they smile. It's nice. I'm also pleased to see home-made costumes making a comeback. Maybe it's the economy, or maybe my friends just skew creative (I suspect a combination of the two). Whatever the reason, I support this trend. As with so many other things in my childhood, I never really knew how good I had it until I was an adult. My parents couldn't afford store-bought costumes for me and my brother (which, truth be told, were pretty hideous in those days anyway) and so we always had home-made costumes. The quality varied wildly from the almost un-wearable robot costume (a cardboard box covered in aluminum foil, and any similarity between the control dial and a spinner from the Game of Life is purely coincidental) to the completely charming Underdog costume I wore in kindergarten, 2nd, 4th and 6th grades. Only once were my brother and I a "matched set" costume wise... I wore my red and white striped pajamas and he was a police officer. There's a picture of it somewhere, and it's the cutest thing you ever saw. Because we were so far apart in age, my brother and I were seldom together in school, but we did go trick or treating together. Once it started to get dark (daylight trick or treating is a modern invention I'll never understand, I don't care how much safer it is) we got our plastic pumpkins or bags or whatever and hit the streets. We did a couple of houses on our block to warm up, then made a beeline for the lower half of Ross Park, two blocks away. We had lived on Ross Park, so I knew the area well, even though our apartment had been on the much less desirable upper section of the street. The lower section as we rounded Court Street was ablaze with porch lights... it was like discovering buried treasure and winning the lottery at the same time. And keep in mind, this was before "fun size" candy bars were invented. Many is the year we had to go home, empty our pumpkins, and return to Ross Park to finish the job.

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