What I Did the Last Four Halloweens
I spent Halloween 2006 alone on a couch in my apartment. I had a chemistry lab the next morning so I did my lab report while watching Leprechaun: In the Hood and drinking a glass of whiskey and ice.
I found this picture on Facebook a few days later:
I was studying abroad in Paris during this Halloween. I was unsure if people would celebrate or not, and I didn’t have any friends to ask, so I shaved off my beard but left the moustache as a kind of costume. I also wore an American flag around my shoulders, which seems really embarrassing in retrospect. When I got to school, no one was dressed up. One guy from Spain looked at me and nodded his head in a way that suggested he approved of my moustache. After my first class, I went to the liquor store and bought a bottle of whiskey and started taking shots in the bathroom between classes and sometimes during classes. By my last class, a poetry workshop, I was pretty drunk and I think people knew it.
For Halloween 2008 I went to a party in Greenpoint, Brooklyn. I met some of my friends there but they left early. Another one of my friends came and left as well. I was dressed in a full-body gorilla suit that my dad bought as a joke for three hundred dollars on eBay. I got pretty drunk at the party. I remember encountering several people from one of my neuroscience classes in which I never spoke. I vaguely remember them making fun of me by asking me questions about the teacher in sarcastic tones. I also remember there was a gay guy who was grabbing me a lot while I was dancing, to the point that I had to forcibly tell him to “chill.”
When I got home, I put a small DiGiorno pizza in the oven and took a shower. I tried to time my shower with the pizza so that when I got out of the shower the pizza would be ready, but when I got out of the shower and looked at the pizza, it was charred and black. I ate it and went to sleep.
I remember having really bad acne and not wanting to go out on this Halloween. I lay in my bed and read Matthew Rohrer’s A Plate of Chicken and then William Carlos Williams’s long poem “Asphodel, That Greeny Flower,” which Matthew Rohrer had recommended to me in class that week. I seem to remember that reading Matthew Rohrer’s book and William Carlos Williams’s poem took about the same amount of time. I spent the rest of the night emailing Matthew Rohrer questions I had. I took a shower as well.
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