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Halloween 2007 Ronan as a squirmy cat for Halloween 2007. Or a mouse. Could be a mouse. Or a reverse panda. Seriously, what is that costume?

I’ve mentioned before how fascinated Ronan is with my eyeglasses. He loves to pull them off my face and hold them and chew on them. The repair bill is $150. Ouch. I’ll skip that for as long as I can still see through them.

His other favorite daddy attribute is my chest hair. There’s no way to say this easily; I’m a bear. I’m covered in fur. Ronan has made the connection that mommy Terry is not covered in fur, and I am. As I’m sure you’re aware, the natural thing to do is to remove the fur for closer inspection.

Which is unbelievably painful. It’s so painful I’m not sure how I’ve still got hair on my chest, as it feels like he’s ripped out everything there. At first I thought he was having nipple confusion because he kept pulling my shirt collar down; I thought he was looking for a nipple. However it turns out he’s quite entertained petting my bear fur and pulling it out by the roots. I’m not sure why this is so fascinating for him, but it is. As I battle severe migraines from a drug problem (allergy, not addiction, I just read that sentence) I find it easier to just let him pull the hair out rather than pick up the damn rattle off the floor for the umpteeth time. If they didn’t originate as weapons and act as weapons in novice hands, I would teach him to yo-yo. But that will have to wait until he’s older.

I think Ronan thinks that I’m covered in toys; that these things are there for his amusement. It’s a daddy costume. Which, in a clumsy way, is my segue into Halloween.

Park Slope has a Halloween parade down 7th Avenue. If you want to party, you go to the Greenwich Village parade, where you can get loaded and laid (and mugged and bloodied, if you’re not careful, there are some angry people I’ve met there.) If you want to see the most adorable little kids in costumes, trying to figure out what the hell is going on, come to the Park Slope Parade. By Parade, I mean people go in whatever the hell direction they wish while traffic is suspended. And they go in every direction. It’s not so much a parade as a community intermingling. You want to march, march; you want to watch, pull off the side of the street for a while and watch, because nothing causes more confusion in babies than everyone running around laughing and screaming while parents paint themselves and put weird constrictive costumes on their children. Almost every baby we saw had this “WTF?” look on their face, like everyone had taken crazy pills and they had to remain sane so the world would go back to normal and the babies would get changed and fed. One family had turned their stroller into a garden, and their baby was the sunflower. The baby sat in the stroller looking like the most confused sunflower ever. Another toddler was Yoda to Mom’s Princess Leia. That tyke, who could walk, ran all over the street checking out every other parade participant. That mom needed the Force that night. A friend had handmade their 5-month-old’s pirate costume. I wish I had time for that!

There was so much to take in. I think he was over-stimulated. Ronan seemed generally confused as well. Since we knew we would be out for only a little while, we didn’t worry too much that the hat for his cat costume (which lacked a tail) didn’t really fit; this is the only year the outfit will fit, so out the door we went. Ronan, clearly not into the spirit of things, attempted to take his hat off fairly regularly until there were so many people and things to look at he forgot all about it.

As we wandered 7th Avenue, marveling at all the costumes, Ronan made a cow sound, a deep “Meeeeeeeeeehhhhhhhhh” or “Moooooooo” over and over again. I’m not sure but it sounded a lot like his “What is this?” noise. It was hard to hear but we decided that six months was a little young for a happy appreciation for the Parade so we left pretty quickly. He did seem to spin around quite a bit to take in everything; and there was a lot going on. Next Halloween he will be 18 months, walking, running, and we’ll have to keep from losing him in the crowd. I can’t wait for next Halloween!

While it seems like our everyday clothes are just ordinary, they are actually costumes. The people living in the 15th Century or Medieval Times or the Old West didn’t think they were wearing costumes; they were just clothes. Ronan is beginning to see the distinctions between individuals, the biological and gender differences between his parents and others. While I was told how wonderful it is to experience life again through your child’s eyes, I kinda thought that was a little overblown, a cliché. It’s actually pretty neat, not in that saccharin-sweet Hollywood way, but in that everyday way that you learn something new. Ronan seems to learn something new every day, and a lot of the time I’ve forgotten to appreciate or just took for granted what he’s practicing. Sure, I may spend two or three or more hours picking up things he’s dropped on the floor just to see what happens when you let go of something, but it’s also great to see him light up when he figures out that he can pick something off of the table and let it go.

Halloween is one of those holidays that seems more fun because you celebrate it with total strangers from your community. Like the New Year’s fireworks in Prospect Park, It’s nice to be in a crowd. Maybe all three of us will share the same theme for our costumes...


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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on November 2, 2007 12:22 AM.

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