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Wednesday, 30 October 2013



Female lesser short-nosed fruit bat (Cynopterus brachyotis) [with wing-puncture marking], originally from southeast Asia, flying in a wind tunnel in Massachusetts: photo by Pepe Iriarte (josdiri), 18 January 2006

The non human
stares back across the final
at you, suburban
in thin miserable late October neon night mist
entering the Spirit Halloween outlet
on Shattuck
to buy stinking Chinese plastic
fright mask, chimerical
which bares
the hapless fear
of the violated constraint

File:Cynopt titthae100824-6270 tdp.JPG

Indonesian Short-nosed Fruit Bat (Cynopterus titthaecheilus), forearm 80mm. From Bogor, West Java: photo by Wibowo Djatmiko (Wie 146)

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia: a boy tries on Batman's costume before the Eid al-Fitr celebrations at a bazaar. The day of celebrations marks the end of the fasting month of Ramadan: photo by Vincent Thian/AP via The Guardian, 4 August 2013

Captain America salutes the march down Broadway, East Village, New York City: photo by Jose Oqueno, 1 May 2006

Spirit Halloween 2013 store on Broadway and 49th Street, New York City: photo by Brecht Bug, 4 October 2013

Spirit Halloween 2013 store on 10th Avenue and 57th Street, New York City: photo by Brecht Bug, 4 October 2013


Spirit Halloween 2013 store on 5th Avenue and 39th Street, New York City: photo by Brecht Bug, 4 October 2013

Spirit Halloween 2013 store on 3rd Avenue and 57th  Street, New York City: photo by Brecht Bug, 7 October 2013

140/365. Taken at the "set" of a photoshoot I did today for my bestie/roomie/hetero life partner Liz. We were visiting the Spirit store (she got her Harley Quinn costume, I got this legit bowler hat for my Riddler costume) and we got some fake blood and went to town.
The good ones will probably be up on my dA and Flickr once we edit them and etc. etc. But until then, here's me being a creeper....Now I really want to watch The Shining...and Psycho...and Carrie. (You'll see why.)
: photo by Lauren Solinger (tomrocks), 10 September 2010


SuperTeam. Batman, Superman and Batwoman (or possibly Batgirl?) posing together in the hall after the Masquerade. I don't think most of them were actually *in* the masquerade, but they were good costumes, so I snapped a pic: photo by Alexx Kay, 19 January 2008


Lally said...


TC said...

Thanks Michael. You're always welcome here at the haunted house.

ACravan said...

This is superb; finally, something to get excited about, rather than enervated in the vicinity of, during this saison en enfer. The young kid in Malaysia is terrific. Taking something slightly irrelevant from this (but perhaps not since Spirit Halloween recently popped up in this space), I was surprised and saddened to discover that Scalamandre, the fine textile purveyor, closed its East Side of Manhattan showroom and has now been invaded by Spirit Halloween. We enjoyed some very pleasant moments there among the silks. Something in that image of a traditional, elegant, formerly bustling commercial space defiled, really haunts me. But Halloween's tomorrow -- will there be an encore? Curtis

TC said...

Curtis, "defiled" is absolutely the word. When one pauses to consider the sheer accumulation of wealth and power, real and symbolic, architectural and realtor-oid, compacted into those retail blocks, it's almost impossible to conceive how the cheapjack flybynight fright-porn emporia managed to land in those high-end spaces. One pauses to do the rental math, aghast. I suppose it's appropriate that a society that's in the pits should plunge abruptly into Hell in its urban display presentation, but still -- just saying. It's one thing to have trailer trash culture at the boondocks trailer park, but is this actually the city of which Americans were to be proud?

In my only outing of the week I stopped but didn't shop at the local outlet. Strictly research. My cane and pallor seem to have scared away some of the traffic at the wire bat racks.

The space occupied by this was a Walgreen's last year. But then around here, practically every space was either a Starbuck's or a Walgreen's last year. I suppose the turnover rate fits into the equation in a certain way, given this is a business that's literally here today gone tomorrow (and of course the corporate history is porn today, whiskey tomorrow). I asked one of the employees if his job ended at midnight on Halloween. No, he said, we'll already be gone by then -- and they've got three days to clear the space.

Our traditional festivals travel light any more.

Unknown said...

Thanks for reminding me it's Halloween tomorrow.

USA really reveals itself on Halloween.

It is a Halloween country.

Give us what we want or there will be consequences

Good practice for the little ones. Halloween in USA. An educational activity.

No complaints



Unknown said...

Terrific poem,Tom Glad to see you are turning them out like the master you are. Great sequence of crazed citizens in the ritual preparations. No joke tho. The poem nails it.


TC said...

Dang right about the revelation aspect, Harris. Halloween is our secular Feast of the Epiphany. And what is revealed? The Chuckie in the manger? The severed hand on the top of the axle tree? The latex Spirit Halloween bat that doubles as a daring sex toy? The treats all run together any more. Not even to begin to speak of the tricks.

Here Halloween is a Season in Hiding. The Insurance Guy, after a year of mutilating ancient noble sequoias while keeping up the assertiveness training of his frantically screaming at all times children, has unleashed a full-bore festive diorama of skeletons, ghosts, cobwebs & c. in the brutally denuded front lawn. On the commercial drag a block over, official administered Halloween extravaganza begins at 9 a.m. (I kid you not). SUV loads full of suburban brats will arrive to pester the residents for sugar infusions. If one survives to attempt to emerge like Dracula by night, the downtown bus and downtown bus stop will be rolling comfort stations for the hordes of tiny and not so tiny pirates and Goths and Vandals and strumpets and witches and wenches and the like. Later on, the denizens of the freeway feeder will remind us that the Gangsters Rule The Night, and we will cower accordingly -- do they still use the term Shelter in place?

In any case... Curtis, as you've so kindly requested an encore...

Take Us to Your Leader

Wooden Boy said...

Here, the kids in their Chinese plastic fright masks have taken to parading the streets and demanding sweets a good week before the day itself.

When you compare all this obligatory mirthless, set out fun to the older traditions - visiting graves and remembering, inviting ghosts to the feast - it does all seem a bit shabby.

TC said...

E'en now the festive whoops from beyond the thin mouldering walls of the gelid haunted house remind that the neighborhood sugar shakedown is already well underway. And those are the whoops of the moms!!

"Whoa, you did SO good!"


However not all parents in the land of the free are so gaily unmisgiving.

A health center in the Philadelphia area is staying open late to assuage the anxieties of the parents of children who have arrived back at base with a bulging swag bag.

"Patient First, a walk-in health center with locations in East Norriton and Montgomeryville, is offering free X-ray screenings for Halloween candy.

"Families can bring in their goodie bags from 6 to 9 p.m. Thursday and see a digital X-ray of their sweets.

"Ian Slinkman, a spokesman for the health center, said the scan may 'pick up metal, plastic, and glass' but that parents should still personally inspect their children's candy.

"While stories of razor blades in apples and needles in candy bars mostly turned out to be urban myths, Slinkman said the X-rays could be 'good for parents' peace of mind. And it's a fun activity for the kids. They like to see inside the candy.'

"Technicians will use digital X-rays and show children the results on a computer screen.

"'It's kind of cool. You can see the Milk Duds with the little caramel in there,' Slinkman said."

You can just hear the cheering ring of the high-pitched little spoiled brat voices. "Mom, mom, can we go scan our candy now, please!!"