don’t know jack


“Each year, the Great Pumpkin rises out of the pumpkin patch that he thinks is the most sincere. He’s gotta pick this one. He’s got to. I don’t see how a pumpkin patch can be more sincere than this one. You can look around and there’s not a sign of hypocrisy. Nothing but sincerity as far as the eye can see.” ~Linus, It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown

Audrey, my seven-year-old neighbor, met me in my driveway last weekend as I was leaving to run errands.  Our friendship has evolved from last summer when I spoke sharply to her  for ignoring the yellow warning tape outlining newly poured concrete leading into our town home village. She later politely suggested I “weally didn’t have to yell…wemind us nicely.” Yep…no front teeth and no R’s, either.  I apologized.

But this past encounter was to “wemind” me that Halloween is coming, and I should be prepared.  “Many people awe planning to give us spida wings,” she hinted.   I evidently looked confused, so she continued: “Spida wings…to weah on our fingahs.”

Got it. And I will, indeed, be picking up some orange-and-black plastic spida wings at the Dollah Stoh to go with the Buttahfingah candy bites.

That’s the second fresh fact to come my way this Halloween. A friend who knows my heritage asked if I knew the old Irish legend behind the Jack-o-Lantern. Nope. Turns out an Irishman known as Stingy Jack tried to trick the Devil several times…and succeeded.  But when Jack died, he not only was turned out by Heaven, but away from Hell, and given only a glowing coal to light his way in the darkness.  Being clever, if not without flaw, Jack carved a turnip into a lantern, tossed in the coal and took to the road. When the Irish crossed the Atlantic, they brought the tradition with them, upgrading the produce to a pumpkin.

And now you know Jack.

And I know spida wings. 😉


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