Last week I took Little Guy to the party store to peruse costume paraphernalia in the hopes of inspiring him to choose something cheap easy fun. It turned out the scariest thing in the store wasn’t the gory zombie decorations or the 6’ vampire statue looming over me at the entrance. No, I encountered something even scarier than the horde of freakishly upbeat teenager girls, who were texting in the check-out lines, instagramming in the dressing room line, and just plain blocking the aisles.
It involved red satin. The costume choices of these girls, pardon my fuddy-duddiness, left me feeling slightly terrified on their behalf. While I completely understand the allure of red satin (my eyes went there too), I suddenly had visions of drunk teenage girls at unchaperoned parties dressed like fantasy whores where the high probability of something more horrible than nip-slips and cheek leaks would transpire. And for a fleeting second, I was thankful that I don’t have a daughter.
And then the shopping trip took a horrifying turn. Go ahead and call me judgmental…I deserve it.
As Little Guy and I tried to skirt around a box of plastic tridents and witches’ brooms to escape a pack of cackling teens, our path was blocked by a woman who, in my humble opinion (and for reasons that I won’t share), had no business shopping for a red satin corset for public viewing!
Go ahead and call me judgmental! With her hapless husband by her side, bingo wings flapping in the air, she was pulling apart packages of shiny red satin and ribbon rosettes like a kid opening packages on Christmas morning. I took a step back as her elbow grazed my cheek, stepping on Little Guy’s foot. He gave out a sharp yelp, which was heard over the giggling gaggle of girls by an unfortunate gangly teenage stock clerk. He stepped in our direction, a knight in beige gabardine and a blue vest, only to be trapped in the vice-like grip of the female patron. Little Guy and I were now completely surrounded and forced to watch her conversation with the clerk.
“Sweetie,” she said in a husky “smoker’s” voice, “do you have this in an Extra-Large?” She held up a glossy rectangle of fabric. Then she opened it, and pressing the garment against her ample bosom, added: “I don’t think it quite fits”. As the clerk’s shoulders rose and his eyes widened in horror, I turned away. I have seen things in my life that I wish I could un-see… Sadly, my ears can still hear the sharp intake of his breath. Before he could answer, she added “If you don’t have red, I would take white.”
I imagine it looked like this…
Little Guy was cowering behind me. I knew that once he saw things, he could never un-see them. He told me, “I don’t like it here. Can we go home…now?” It was time to take charge. I had survived mountain biking. I had survived Mud Hero. And I had survived getting stuck in the bathtub. Darn it, we were going to survive this!
I quickly glanced around, looking for any means of escape. At this point, I was willing to humiliate myself by clamoring over the box of tridents and ending up in a Youtube video. But then, a glimmer of hope…Two of the teenage girls had moved away from the pack, were admiring something fluffy with wings. I grabbed Little Guy’s hand in a death grip, and in slow motion, I sprinted forward toward that small gap between a perky blonde and a perky brunette. Together, we flew down aisle #1, past the wall of costume pictures, and we leapt with surprising agility over a knight’s shield and out the exit.
Warm sunlight washed over our ashen faces. Little Guy squeezed my hand. Looking up into my eyes, he solemnly vowed to “never go in there again”! I was amazed at his maturity.
I understand the unmistakable gravitational pull toward things that are shiny and pretty. I also gravitate toward the slutty costumes, desperately wanting to believe that I’ve still got “it” (whatever “it” is because I’m pretty sure I never had “it” in the first place)! But I have to be realistic. I live in Canada and they’re predicting snow tonight, so I would be far wiser (for a number of reasons upon which I will not elaborate) to simply don a snowsuit…so Little Guy can “trick-or-treat” longer and acquire enough candy that I can pilfer a few without his knowledge, and lament my bygone “red satin corset days”! It’s really in the best of interest of the public.