This is a picture of my mom and dad before I existed in 1967. My mom was invited to a “beatnik” party, where everyone was supposed to dress up as beatniks. I asked my mom what a beatnik was when I was a little. She said that beatniks were hippies before hippies were hippies. That made sense to me except I really didn’t know what hippies were. She said beatniks were like The Monkeys. I used to watch The Monkeys on television, so I imagined this party to be filled with fun-loving funny guys. Some of them even might have had English accents like Davy Jones. I used to look at this picture and wish I could have been there.
My dad had told my mom that he wasn’t going to go to the party. Instead, he showed up in full wolfman regalia. She looks so angry here because she didn’t realize it was him. This crazy wolfman showed up at the party and was groping her while people were taking pictures. Who could blame her for looking so bugged? No one recognized him at the party.
This picture is from Halloween 1970. My parents were married and I was already born by then. The dress that my mom is wearing ended up being a “dress up” dress that she would let me try on. Stacey and I played with that dress until it was nothing more than rags, we loved it so much. Here again, my dad is the wolfman.
As a child, I used to look at these pictures. These were pictures of the days before they became Jehovah Witnesses and Halloween was off limits. They had dressed up and gone to parties. How I wished I could be a normal kid who could dress up and go trick-or-treating in the neighborhood. If I wasn’t Jehovah Witness, I could participate in the Halloween Parade at school. I could barely understand why my parents could dress up back then, but I wasn’t allowed to dress up. I couldn’t grasp the concept that these photos were from a time when they weren’t Jehovah Witness.
Later, there was a divorce and the divorce decree stated that at age twelve, Stacey and I could decide which religion we wanted to follow. On my twelfth birthday, I chose “The World” and never set foot into a JW Kingdom Hall again. Of all the holidays that had been denied me, Halloween was the one that I wanted the most. Now, I celebrate the holiday enough to make up for those lost years. It’s my favorite of them all.