Saturday, October 30, 2010

Happy Halloween!

Tears streamed down their faces. CatWoman and LadyGaga sobbed on the sidewalk screaming obscenities back and forth at each other. I stood there shocked, confused, sad, and proud at the same time.

What happened?

It all started the month before. I met LadyGaga on the 4 train coming back from the Yankees game. She and her boyfriend were crammed next to me in the packed car. He was a Red Sox fan and she was a Yankees fan. I chatted with them intrigued about the idea of an interfaith sports relationship. They turned out to be good people although I still couldn’t date a Yankees fan.

The girl was about to work in same field as me so we exchanged emails. The guy didn’t seem to mind. It was about as innocent as things could get.

LadyGaga and I exchanged a few emails about work for the next month. I thought nothing of it. I had a girlfriend anyway and was perfectly happy.  I was giving her advice. It was just something nice to do.

Then came Halloween of 2009. Every year it’s brought up how great Halloween is because girls can wear nothing and take pride in their inner slut. But what about guys? I have to admit that I’ve never fully grasped Halloween in this way. I’m too lazy to arrange a costume or spend excessive amounts of money to look good. I usually dressed as simple as possible: A Red Sox fan (t-shirt, hat), a Coach (whistle, hate, warm-ups) or a surfer dude (Hawaiian shirt, visor, sunglasses.)

But this year was different. This year I actually had a plan. I spent two weeks growing out a beard, and made sure to skip my last haircut appointment. I cropped my facial hair, spiked up my hair, and threw on a wife-beater. And then I made one quick stop at the Halloween store for some claws. In a matter of minutes, I morphed into Wolverine from X-men.

I’m a decent looking guy, but by no means am I head-turner. But tonight was different. I wasn’t the nice guy blogger. Tonight, I was Wolverine.

I strutted to my girlfriend’s bar and showed off my costume. A few people snapped pictures of me in the street. I got head nods, high fives (high claws) and smiles everywhere I walked. I entered the bar and my girlfriend’s eyes lit up. She looked amazing too, in a cop uniform. I felt like I was no longer living my ordinary life. Tonight, I was a stud.

I ventured off to my party. The subway was the same thing. Strangers snapped pictures of me and gave me approving grins. I felt like a celebrity. It’s amazing how some facial hair, gel, and a couple of cheap plastic claws can change how people perceive you.

I was at the party when I received a random call from LadyGaga.

She and her friends were in Manhattan and looking for a party to crash. My friend’s party was mellow and fun, and I suggested they stop by. I figured my buddy could get with one of LadyGaga's friends. It would be perfect.

I consumed candy corn and alcohol until they arrived. My friend gave me props for my costume as well as for possibly hooking him up. Every guy deserves a round of applause if he can get four girls to come to a party.

My friend was dressed as a Swing State. It was a sorry costume that definitely was not going to get him laid. But maybe my cool costume Karma would rub off on him.

LadyGaga entered with CatWoman and 2 other friends. They all looked good. I felt I had done well.  They loved my costume and all wanted to play with my claws.

I gave them the agenda. We’d hang at this party and then end up my girlfriend’s bar later (I wanted to make it clear that I had a girlfriend and was not “available.”) They seemed on board. I asked LadyGaga why her boyfriend didn’t come.

LadyGaga: “I don’t have a boyfriend. The guy on the train was just a friend.” My head cocked to the side in confusion. Her flirtations didn’t seem so innocent anymore.

Several candy corn and beverages later, we all moved to the neighborhood bar. It was me, my friend, and the four girls. The flirting level had increased all around. I had a girlfriend and was on my best behavior, but we had an open flirting policy, and I loved to flirt. I chatted up CatWoman for a good hour (I’m a sucker for woman dressed as cats.)

As things progressed, I later danced with CatWoman at the bar. It was probably more seductive then it should’ve been, but I had so many candy corn, I barely knew what was going on. I wasn’t myself anymore anyway. I was Wolverine.

That’s when the fireworks erupted. My friend, who was present and coherent for all of the action, later gave me the play by play. He had been flirting with one of the friends when LadyGaga lost it. She was hysterically crying. She pointed towards me and CatWoman, and cursed a string of obscenities.

LadyGaga: “I told her. He was mine. That fucking bitch!”

“He” was me. My friend Swing State looked as befuddled as I would’ve been. She called dibs on me? Really? Most women hate being reduced to a piece of meat, but I found it quite endearing.

My dancing session with CatWoman ended once she saw LadyGaga in tears and realized she was being called a bitch. She was the next to lose it. In a whirlwind, CatWoman and LadyGaga were crying and fighting: calling each other names, hating on each other.

All because of me: Wolverine.

I just stood their powerless. What would Wolverine do, I thought. I couldn’t think of anything so I sharpened my fake claws and played with my beard.

The hurricane moved to the sidewalk in front of the bar. The girls were sobbing. My friend tried to put out the fire for two reasons. One, because he’s a nice guy, and two, because he really liked one of the friends and knew he couldn’t get with her with this chaos going on. Unfortunately for him, Wolverine was a hard man to get over.

The girls had to leave. I tried to apologize but didn’t know what to say. I had never been the object of affection by two girls at the same time. I tried to explain that it wasn’t even me they wanted. It was Wolverine. And I could only be him once a year.

My friend urged me to leave. I walked down the street shaking my head. I had made two girls cry. I felt awful, but kind of proud at the same time. I wasn't used to one girl liking me let alone two.

I reached my girlfriend’s bar and told her the story. She looked at me up and down and was not surprised about my tale. Wolverine was a heart breaker.

As Halloween approaches this year, this story repeats in my head. I have a two-week old beard, I have my hair gel, and my claws sit at the bottom of my closet. Do I dare break out Wolverine once again?

But that’s best part of Halloween. We can escape our mundane lives for one night, and be someone different. We can embrace our inner slut, inner stud, inner weirdo, inner kid or inner demon just for a few hours. It seems odd, but sometimes we just need to do it.

That reminds me. I should go. It’s just too hard to type with these claws.

Happy Halloween!