This kid is sporting an 80s style Chuck Norris costume. I don't remember that being popular, but to each his own. I remember Strawberry Shortcake, Heman and Shera, Barbie, Rainbow Bright...those sort of things.
I also remember the reflector stickers that they handed out at school. You were supposed to put them on your costume so some crazy driver didn't run you over on Halloween night.
Then, mom always dumped out our candy and inspected it. Any candy that looked like it could have possibly been open was thrown out. And apples were thrown away because there was always the threat of razor blades. I was never bothered by my loss of apples.
I also remember taking such joy in going to a relative's house and thinking I tricked them into not knowing who I was. "Ohhhhhh...who could this be hiding underneath the clown makeup? I have nooooo idea!" Yeah right. They knew it was me all along.
Then I remember the neighborhood mischief. Goody two-shoes (that's me) never participated in any trickery, but my friends did. There were the classic tricks...egging your house/car, soaping your car windows, TPing your front yard, smashing pumpkins, but the Central PA trick was corning people's mailboxes or houses. You take a giant handful of dried corn and shove it in mailboxes so when the unsuspecting postal worker or resident opens it, out came an avalanche of corn. Or, you could throw handfuls at someone's house making a terrifying noise. Yep, definitely a Central PA thing.
And this weekend, as I greet the kids in their non-plastic costumes, I'll think about the way Halloween used to be.