Happy Halloween. I hate Halloween. I have always hated Halloween. But don’t let that spoil your fun. I was dressed as a ghost — an old sheet with a hole in it, suggesting perhaps that my mother cared as little about Halloween as I now do — sitting in the back of a station wagon loaded with kids. I think the tailgate must have been down (at 5, I was not into auto safety, let alone auto insurance reform, as I am now), and when the car started forward, I rolled off the tailgate onto the dirt road.

I’d like to tell you that, resourcefully, I reached into my sheet, whipped out a cell phone, and called a personal injury attorney. Instead, dazed but unhurt (but certainly I could have claimed emotional distress) I waited for the car to back up and retrieve me, and have hated Halloween ever since.

Actually, I’m not sure the car thing had much to do with my hating it. I’m one of those people who’s insecure about what he wears and thus goes for the khakis, Oxford button-down shirt and blue blazer most of the time, which wins no awards on Halloween.

I did have a brief period of years when, for one reason and another, I felt the need to go out in New York on Halloween and managed, finally, to find something (which I reused year after year) I felt comfortable with. I’d put on my tux . . . (Tuxedo renters, here’s a tip: next time you rent a tux you like, buy it rather than return it — just be sure it’s a classic style that never goes out of fashion and work out the price in advance with the rental company. Not only will you save time and hassle that once every year or two that you need it, you will also realize a terrific return on your investment. Buy it for $200, say, and realize a 40% tax-free dividend each time you don’t have to pay $80 to rent one. And, yes, in case it’s a brand new one you’d prefer to buy, Men’s Suits does sell tuxes.) . . . and then don a cheap dime-store pig mask which I had specially enhanced with a press-on dollar sign on the snout. I was, I explained to all the disheveled denizens of the night, a capitalist pig.



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