Friday, November 1 2019


Dear Journal,

Good morning, everyone - and Happy November 1st! It's exciting to begin a new month, even if this next month will be darker, colder, and a little busier. From the last time we glanced at our calendar, Marissa and I realized that this coming weekend is the last empty one we have in a while. For us, November will be lots of driving, visiting, hosting, and - of course - cooking.

Yesterday was a pretty wonderful day. I wore my Spider-Man suit all day, and had a lot of fun doing regular things with my mask on. I kept it on my desk all day, and I put it on to get coffee refills, attend meetings, and pick up lunch from Quizno's. In the morning, I went down to the seventh floor for a bagel and mimosa with my teammate Josh, who was dressed like a vampire. While mingling, I bumped into an IT guy, who was also dressed liked Spider-Man. And despite our costumes, you could definitely tell we both worked in the tech sector because we immediately - instinctively - re-enacted that one Spider-Man meme where they are pointing at eachother. After work, I took Rodney to the grocery store. He was pretty upset with me that I didn't wear the mask while driving, and I was having a hard time getting across why that would be a bad idea.

We wanted to have plenty of time for trick or treating, so just picked up some pasta, red sauce, and pancietta. And of course, We got plenty of chuckles and high fives wandering around Hy-Vee. One thing I started to pick up on was how awkward people can be about acknowledging your Halloween costume. It felt like people ran up to me and spoke before they thought about what to say. People would just point, or run up to me and make a noise, like AHHHHH. I think what learned from yesterday is that the best thing to do when you see an exotic costume out in the wild is to just enjoy it from a distance. Or at the very least, keep your cool. As Rodney and I paid for our groceries, the cashier very calmly asked "Did you find everything alright, Spider-Man?" Finally, some respect for the mask.

When we got home, I cooked pasta while Marissa wrestled Rodney into half of his suit. You'd think he would have learned to associate "uncomfortable costume" with "limitless chocolate and candy" by now, but he was just as reluctant about wearing it as he was the day before. Meanwhile, in full super hero regalia, I was browning pancietta and grating parmesan cheese.

We ate dinner, then Rodney and I decided to hit the streets. A few trick or treaters came by before dinner, but things had really started to slow down. Rodney and I bundled up, and Marissa agreed to stay behind and man the door. Rodney and I walked a few houses up our street. There were some neighbors standing outside by a little campfire, and they approached us with a bowl of candy. Rodney was silently upset, so I did most of the talking. They gave Rodney some candy, then my neighbor turned to me and asked, "You want a beer Spider-Man?" He filled a red cup from a miniature keg and handed it to me. "I can promise you, it's cold," he laughed.

Rodney and I visited a few more houses, but he seems pretty upset. I stopped on the sidewalk and asked him what was wrong. He whimpered something about getting momma. "Do you want to go home and get momma?" His eyes lit up as he took the initiative and started walking home.

We knocked on our door. From the window, I saw Marissa spring up off the couch, pausing The Office reruns. "I think he's mad we left you at home," I reported.

"Oh thank goodness," Marissa said in a sigh of relief. "No trick or treaters, and I was starting to get bored. I was actually cleaning out my inbox."

We jumped in the car and drove a little further down the street, parking by a small cluster of festively decorated houses. There were more neighbors standing outside by a fire. Rodney, who was in silent protest up until now, was suddenly running his mouth and babbling about costumes, candy, and trick or treating. He proudly marched up the steps of the next house, leaving us behind. As the neighbor dropped some candy in his bucket, he waved and said HAPPY HALLOWEEN. "Well look who's suddenly Mr. Halloween over here," I teased.

We hit a few more houses until the cold got the best of us. We went home, emptied our candy onto the table, then snapped a few pictures of us in costume. We took a few of each other, then spent about five minutes trying to set up the camera on the stairs with a timer so we could get a family shot. As these things usually work out, the picture we spent the most time on getting was the most unusable. Kind of unsettling actually. We're off center, a bit out of focus, and Rodney looks perturbed. Like a bizarre man & wife Spider-Man kidnapping ransom photo.

We snacked on candy and watched a little more of Frozen. After Rodney's eyes started to droop, I put him to bed and changed out of my costume. After wearing the spandex suit for literally the entire day, it felt good to change into regular clothes.

I cleaned the kitchen, then Marissa and I crashed on the couch to watch some YouTube. We watched a cooking video for making forest mushroom cream sauce, then Nick Offerman's Hot Ones interview. We closed out the night by finishing our movie pick Romeo & Juliet - the Leonardo DiCaprio version.

So that's what I got. Today is a regular work day. Heading into the weekend, I'm very mindful of how precious an empty Saturday is. Marissa and I are still racking our brains for how to spend it, but at the very worst, we're just going to hang around the house, and maybe cook some mushroom and cream sauce tonight.

Have a great day, everyone. Oh, and I just noticed I journaled every day in October. For those of you who read every journal in October, thanks for the loyalty. Here's to beginning a colder, darker, heartier month!