Trickier Treats

1 Nov

It’s happened, everyone.

Halloween has become the new New Year’s Eve.  And it’s not a good thing.  It’s not the new Old New Year’s Eve, which was about champagne and friendship and making out.  It’s the new New New Year’s Eve.  Which is about drinking waaaay to much and sleeping on someone’s floor.  But mostly, it’s about the unrelenting pressure to have fun.  New Year’s Eve has become a Glengarry Glen Ross style high-pressure fun environment, where tequila is for closers, and you’d better make your commission.  Nobody wants to be the guy that didn’t have the MOST fun on New Year’s.  Consequently, it’s almost always a let-down.  It’s hard to have the most fun every year on the same night.  Especially in the middle of winter.

So Halloween was our safety valve.  A night that was made for costumes and parties and fun and bad/good decision hybrids.  But we’ve gotten wise to ourselves.  What was once a no-fail slam-dunk good time now carries the same pressure as New Year’s Eve.  It’s like in 2004 when the Red Sox won the World Series for the first time in eighty-six years.  It used to be that the playoffs were exciting.  But once we (the fans) tasted victory, we couldn’t settle for less.  And that’s what’s happened to New Year’s Eve and now Halloween.

And I don’t mean to say  that I don’t have fun on these holidays.  Generally I have a lot of fun!  But it’s the paralysis of opportunity that hangs me up.  Do I go to this party or that concert?  Do I meet high school friends at this bar or college friends at that one?  Each choice brings the worry that any of the infinite other ones would have been more fruitful.

I feel like every year, I hear at least one of these stories: “You should have been at Kyle’s!  Kanye West showed up and called Becky racist, and then he did a concert in the bathroom and gave everyone Ecstasy.”  And until that point, I had been feeling pretty good about my party experience.  I had gone to Kevin’s party where Cornel West showed up and called Erik racist and then gave a lecture on the porch and gave everyone fist pounds.

So this year, and forever after, I will make my plans, stick to them, and never listen to anything anyone else did. I will not worry about potentially more-fun gatherings or events.  I will not stew over whether I made the right decision.  If someone tries to tell me about the killer party they attended, I will put my fingers in my ears and sing “la la la la la.”  Problem solved.

I guess what I’m trying to say is, when did I become the least fun person on the world?  It has literally gotten to the point where I heard a story about some friends of mine who went out on Friday night, and the one who wanted to go home the earliest was taunted: “Come on.  You’re being a real Gondelman, here.”  And when I heard that I said: “Stay offa my lawn you damn kids!”  Anyway, this is all beside the point.  Hope you all had a happy Halloween!

Young Andy Rooney


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