Halloween Cats on the Prowl

By Linda O'Connell

Halloween Cats on the Prowl

“Why should the kids have all the fun?”I asked my neighbor that Halloween. Although we were opposites, my neighbor, Rose, and I became fast friends. I was a goody-two-shoe who had married the only boy I’d ever dated, right out of high school. Rose had a colorful dating history before she married. I lived vicariously through her titillating stories and past experiences. Two pots of coffee past noon, we’d still be crabbing about our husbands or joyfully reminiscing about our youth and old boyfriends, as we waited for our young children to come home from school.

We derived great pleasure from dressing up at Halloween and going trick-or-treating with our kids. There was something freeing about pretending to be a princess or a super hero, having control over every imaginary aspect of our lives. We made fabulous costumes each year and pounded the pavement with our youngsters. We snickered when our kids received a Mr. Good Bar, and when someone dumped a Snickers in their goody bag, we acted nutty. We robbed our kids of Butterfingers and Mounds. Eventually the children would ask for an extra candy bar for us. Some years we collected as much as the kids did.

The Halloween our girls outgrew our nonsense, and begged to go to a party instead, Rose and I decided to hit the streets ourselves. We had an ulterior motive; we were on the prowl for candy: Eye candy. We told my six year old son we would take him to a wealthy neighborhood where he would receive full-sized candy bars instead of snack-size ones. Rose and I were on a mission to get up close and personal with one of the unmarried staff members at the kids’ school. He was drop-dead gorgeous and looked like a model. All the moms fantasized about him. Bored housewife crushes are the worst.

We had overheard him in the office say that he was going to dress as a pirate and give out candy at his mother’s home on Halloween night. He mentioned the intersecting streets.

Rose and I looked at one another and cooked up a plan. “How hard will it be to find a grown pirate on a front porch? You want to?” I asked. Her giggle ricocheted.

When I got home, I asked my little boy, “How about being a pirate with an eye patch and a sword? I have a red bandana, and you can growl, ‘Argh!’ “

When he said yes without hesitation, I high-fived him and said, “Aye matey!”

Rose and I both had zipper-front, leopard-print jump suits. I painted thick whiskers on my cheeks and blackened my nose with mascara. Then I stepped into my outfit and zipped it to my chin. I grabbed my daughter’s oversize fuzzy house slippers with bear claws and called Rose. “Are you ready yet? Won’t the swashbuckler be surprised when we show up with a little pirate?”

She giggled and said she’d be right over. When the doorbell rang, my little boy opened the door and shouted, “Mom, there’s a big cat coming in.”

Rose and I wore the same outfits, but I did not recognize my best friend as she stood swinging a sock tail in her hand. Her giggle gave her away. She looked like an adult film star teetering on spike heels with her cleavage spilling out of her plunging neckline. Her makeup was heavily applied; she had red pouty lips, thin wispy whiskers, cat-eye shaped liner and her lids were shaded in gold. Talk about opposites. I looked like a stuffed animal, and she looked like a sex kitten.

She drove her brand new car, a large white sedan. We were off to get a glimpse of the guy we drooled over, although he was unaware that he was the object of our fantasy escapism. We agreed not to say one word in his presence, so he wouldn’t recognize us.

Rose turned off the headlights and eased her new car to the curb mid-block. I ushered my son out of the car with his sword and trick-or-treat bag. Rose looked like a cat on the prowl, and I scuffed along like an alley cat. My heart skipped a beat at the sight of the buccaneer on the porch. My bored housewife crush sent heat waves crashing through my body when he stood and peered curiously at us as we approached. There were no other children in sight. Our adult pirate raised his eyebrows with interest as Rose strutted her stuff. I, being too shy, pushed my little guy forward. Black beard swash buckled with my boy but kept his eyes on my friend’s treasure chest. My son said, “Trick or treat,” but our guy with the booty ignored him. I nudged my son.

“Say it again honey, so the big pirate pays attention.” I spoke. I SPOKE! The big pirate looked at my whiskered face with recognition, and I looked at Rose with horror. He dropped candy into the kid’s bag, and I grabbed my son’s hand. We ran off the porch. Rose, with car keys in hand, shoved the key into the lock of her new car, but the key wouldn’t turn. “Hurry-hurry! Let’s get out of here!” I was dying of embarrassment.

The door wouldn’t budge. I looked down the street and saw the pirate peering around a porch pillar. I looked up the street, and that is when I almost fainted with relief. I grabbed Rose by one hand and my son by the other and off we ran the half a block to her car, which was identical to the one we had been trying to enter. We howled like two wild cats on the prowl and laughed all the way home where my little boy filled his loot bag in our own neighborhood.

The pirate? Well, we soon discovered that he was interested in a younger wench, so Rose and I were off the hook and back to pilfering kid’s candy.

About this writer

  • Linda O’ConnellLinda O’Connell is a seasoned preschool teacher and award-winning freelance writer from St. Louis, Missouri. Her prose and poetry have appeared in books, magazines and anthologies. As Linda waltzed through the decades, she discovered her age of elegance was in her forties, but she isn’t complaining. Life has been an adventure. Linda resides in the Midwest but her heart and soul hang out at the beach.

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47 Responses to “Halloween Cats on the Prowl”

  1. Pat says:

    Your story definitely made me snicker!

  2. All that for a candy bar? You must really love chocolate, Linda! ;-)

  3. This was just what the doctor ordered this morning, Linda. I am down sick with the flu, and sure appreciate the laugh.

  4. Lynn says:

    Oh my gosh this is hilarious! You & your friend were quite the characters.

  5. Claudia says:

    Wow, this was a good one…full of fun and silly abandon! What a memory it made!

  6. Cathi L. says:

    As always, your stories give the reader a laugh and a glimpse into your interesting life.

  7. sandie says:

    This was cute! I loved that you had a friend that you could be that comfortable with. Funny how he recognized you – I could just imagine that feeling and then running to the wrong car! What a blast.

  8. Diane Thompson says:

    OMG!! LMAO at this story Linda. So we’ll written I could just see you to in them costumes doing that. Oh I have a friend just like that. LMAO still.

  9. Sioux says:

    Linda–Lucky for your husband (you ARE married, right?) , you didn’t hit the Payday with the Pirate.

    That was a funny story. I can just see you and your friend Rose in matching–but so differently filled–costumes. Thanks for sharing this “tail.”

  10. Gerry Mandel says:

    I didn’t realize what I’ve been missing on Halloween until I read your story, Linda. It used to be one of my favorite holidays, until the kids left home and we moved to a neighborhood with only a smattering of kids. You have inspired me to be proactive on Oct. 31 (weather permitting), pull out my old mask, some old clothes, a couple of furry feet and scour the neighborhood for some dark chocolate. I’m a very particular trick or treater. Thanks for the entertaining story.

  11. Alice says:

    So silly and so fun! Perhaps you Kit-Kats would have had better luck with Oh, Henry. Linda, what are you dressing as this year? I can’t tell but I’ll post afterward. Still my favorite holiday!

  12. Kathy Baker says:

    I cackled like a witch through your Halloween tale, and it brought back memories of several risque Halloween’s in my own past. Who says we must ever grow up? I say never, it’s all about the fun because we only go around once.

  13. Barbara Dunn says:

    What an embarrassing but delightfull story. Sometimes all we can do is laugh at ourselves. It makes us human and at the same time entertains.Thanks for sharing. I’m probably going to think of you every time I see a Trick or Treater dressed like a cat.

  14. Val says:

    I’m embarrassed FOR you!

    Your description of Rose reminded me of Aunt Sissy in A Tree Grows in Brooklyn. I was waiting for her to refer to that pirate as “John.”

  15. Lee says:

    You tell the best stories and always with humor – thanks!!

  16. Donna Volkenannt says:

    What fun and such a sweet memory.

  17. Linda,

    A delightful read, as always. Thanks for sharing. :-)

  18. Bruce says:

    Sounds like you had fun

  19. Theresa Sanders says:

    Linda, this is such a fun read! I love hearing your stories about Rose. I can just picture you two and all your Halloween pranks!

  20. This rollicking adventure is a treasure! You have such a way with words.

  21. Faye Adams says:

    Totally entertaining, Linda, through and through. A good story keeps you reading, all the way to the end. Thanks for another good story.

  22. Rose Ann says:

    I laughed out loud. Makes me want to pull out my old costumes, though they were never as fun as yours and your friend’s. Funny story.

  23. Sioux says:

    Linda–This story was purrrfect–a blend of hilarity and nostalgia. I would have looked like the LUMPY stuffed animal, and I probably would have tripped or my costume would have ripped… that’s how my luck usually runs. Thanks for sharing this funny story.

  24. Love the way you tell a story Linda.

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