Happy Halloween.

I feel strange today. Not in the “Oh it’s Halloween, spooky spooky!” strange, but more of a “I don’t exactly feel like myself” strange. I suppose that does have to do with what day it is though. Halloween is my favorite holiday. There is no other holiday that allows you to dress up as something ridiculous, fantastical, or otherwise completely out of character, and not have people on the street judge you for being insane (well, to be practical about it, you will be judged, but more for what kind of costume you have on, not for simply wearing one – and, in all honesty, you might still be seen as insane). And for dressing up, instead of embarrassed looks from strangers who happen to have the misfortune of being on the same street as you, you get candy! Chocolate bars, jolly ranchers, sweet, sticky, gooey, yummy, unhealthy, rot-your-teeth candy! And all you have to do is put on a mask or a cape or a paper bag and you’re set (though I hope you all put more thought into it than that).

I love Halloween. Maybe it’s that child in us, or that need to be more than we appear. Halloween gives us the freedom to be exactly what we want, regardless of reality, expectations, or morals. Be a princess, a vampire, Sarah Palin with an Obama button pinned to your vest (“She’s a true Maverick.”) There are endless opportunities and choices and it all happens on one day.

I digress.

I feel strange today. Why? For the first time in I don’t know how long (quite possibly this is the first time this has happened), I have not dressed up. Did I think about it? Of course. But the problem isn’t a costume or lack of one, this year I seem to lack the spirit. And on a deeper level, it might have to do with the problems I’ve been having in defining myself. How can I be expected to be excited in being something else when I don’t even know who I am on a normal day. Maybe that should make it easier, but I can’t help but focus on who I really want to be everyday, not just for one holiday. I want to have a set identity for my day to day life before I continue to go all out for my favorite day of the year.

I don’t know if that makes sense to some people. Regardless, I’ll still probably find something to wear to hand out candy. I have a set of wings… Maybe I’ll figure something out. The flaw of Halloween? In an aisle of a thousand faerie wings, not a single pair really work.

Happy Halloween.

Early Morning Meditations

I spent the morning in a basement cleaning cobwebs, spiders, and dust out of a large shelving unit. A woman at my work needed help and offered to pay me $10 an hour to help her get organized. I really like her and she’s definitely one of my favorite co-workers so I was quick to say yes. It was a nice way to spend the morning, despite being slightly hungover from last night’s endeavor. The shelving unit was something she found at a garage sale and wanted to use it for paper for her scrapbooking (which is a really cool idea – I think the unit was originally used for mailings). The first hour I was by myself, systematically cleaning each slot, but the second hour she came downstairs to keep me company and we talked politics, scrapbooking, and childrens books.

I guess the main point of telling you about my morning isn’t to rub it into your face that I got $30 for two hours of minor work (Hey, you know what? I got $30 this morning for only two hours of minor work!), but to share with you that I got to re-meet someone today. The only time I ever got to talk to her was at work, and that’s really all I knew about her. It’s interesting, isn’t it? The many faces people have. I learned today that my co-worker wants to write books for kids and that she keeps a large notepad in her truck for when she gets ideas while driving. I learned that she loves to make her own paper and make books. I learned that while she loves Ashland, she wishes that she were in a more liberal city. These are things I would never have learned about her just at work.

It got me thinking, you know. What do I really know about people I see every day? For that matter, what do I really know about myself? What do I want people to know about me? How am I portraying myself to people, both here, on my blog, and in real life? We can’t honestly know what people think of ourselves because 1) people lie, and 2) perception is everything.

“The simplest questions are the most profound. Where were you born? Where is your home? Where are you going? What are you doing? Think about these once in a while and watch your answers change. ” – Richard Bach

What do you know about yourself? Just some food for thought. (Hey, and off topic, but have some shameless self promotion as well – take the time out of your busy schedule to vote for Snailbird.com. We need all the help we can get. Please?)