We enter at our own risk with a sense of foreboding, wishing we were anywhere else on the planet but this stale smelling, sweat inducing tomb of a space.  It’s sick enough that we adults must go forth into hell but what’s even worse, even more maniacal is that we bring along our innocent children whose sweet naiveties are served up as food for the beast that lies within.  That beast sits and waits for its victims, patiently knowing that we will have no choice but to face it.   Every year I promise I will never return, but those of you who have shared this horror know the truth.  We have no choice but to return when the full moon rises in the sky for the tenth time in a given year.  You know now the dread of which I speak:


 halloween superstore


It is a place where zombie parents who have no crafting skills or time to make costumes take a haunted pilgrimage each year.  Upon entering the store we lose all control of our parently functions as we are dragged around by our offspring who either 1) have a very specific vision for a costume that doesn’t exist or at least not in their size OR 2) have no vision whatsoever turning a shopping trip that should take 7 -8 minutes into a 2-3 hour ordeal. We stare straight ahead careful not to make eye contact with others who will recoil in horror when they see that the life has left our eyes.   Those of us who have been to this hell before have become smart enough not to argue with the child who wants to be a pirate or a witch for the third year in a row.  Let them.  We are one of the lucky ones.  There are always the newbies who still believe it is an epic battle they can win.  I walk by them as they plead with their little darling to please consider another costume, and I can’t help but cackle.  But my joy in other people’s pain is short lived.

If you are lucky enough to find a costume, you must then avoid a series of evil lairs that lie in wait on your way out, including: 

  • The Extremely Inappropriate Adult Costume Section
  • The Electronic Halloween Decorations That Turn Halloween into a Three Figure $$$ event.
  • The Violent Weapons that Can Accompany Any Costume
  • The Rubber Masks that Give your Child Nightmares
  • The Makeup Section that Stains

You survive the gauntlet and arrive at the end game – the checkout register where a seasonal worker reminds you that this is the Land of No Returns.  Dizziness begins to set in as you again torture yourself with the realization that this place is so much scarier than the glue gun you refuse to pick up each year.  You numbly hand over $39.95 for the costume and run blindly to the door, grinning child in tow. 

And after it is all said and done, on November 1 the evil space disappears leaving no trace of the suffering it doled out, almost as if it never existed at all.  But like Freddy and Chucky and Jason, the Halloween Superstore will return every year to the delight of children everywhere who scream as we drive by the strip mall.

“Theyrrrrrrrre heeeeeeeeeeere!”

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