make WWAY your homepage  Become a fan on facebook  Follow us on twitter  Receive RSS Newsfeeds  MEMBERS: Register | Login

WHAT WAS YOUR FAVORITE HALLOWEEN COSTUME AS A KID?

Isn't it funny how a costume can become a moment frozen in time? A few weeks ago, I took a trip to my hometown to help dad move some boxes into storage. While sifting through stacks of memories, I can across a few old Halloween costumes. They were neatly tucked away in a box marked "seasonal". Mom was always keen about preserving childhood memories, and these old costumes sure brought back a few.

Near the top of the pile was a Mickey Mouse costume- my very first. It was still in the original box, and many of you will remember the brand name. In fact, you may have owned a "Ben Cooper Original" costume of your own. You could often find these costumes sold in drug stores. Usually consisting of a plastic mask with elastic strap (held by a single metal staple), the "body" of the suit was vinyl (and smelled like a plastics laboratory). Ben Cooper costumes came in a wide variety of choices, often consisting of popular comic characters (Flinstones, Batman, G.I. Joe, etc).

Setting the Mickey Mouse box aside, I uncovered no less than 5 years worth of additional costumes. Some were undoubtedly hand-picked by mom (before I was old enough to object). You know how parents are. They dress you "cute" instead of "cool". As a result, my early costumes were relatively tame. Characters included Casper ("The Friendly Ghost") and the all-important generic "scarecrow". As I grew older, I chose my own costumes. It wasn't long before I graduated to werewolves, mad scientists, and occasionally comic book characters.

Most definitely, my favorite costume was "Mer-Man" (an ally of Skeletor, if that means anything to you). I remember the day I bought that costume. I had worked all summer with dad earning money to buy school clothes, and I had a few dollars left over. In September, we made a trip to Eckerd drugs (to purchase a Pez dispenser, no less). I came across the Ben Cooper "He-Man" costume collection. And there it was- "Mer-Man" (one of my favorite characters). I played so much in that costume, it was nearly worn out by Halloween.

My son has recently developed a fascination with Spiderman, so our family will be making a trip down the superhero aisle this Halloween. Hopefully, the weather will cooperate this year. October is usually a quiet month, but there are always exceptions. As a viewer recently reminded me, we are long overdue for another "Hazel". For long- time residents, Hurricane Hazel will always remain the standard for hurricane potential in North Carolina. The only official Category 4 storm to make landfall in our state, Hazel struck on October 15, 1954 with 145 mph winds. Pushing a storm surge of 17+ feet, damages topped $150 million.

For new residents, there can be a false sense of security about hurricanes. Recent storms such as "Ernesto", "Ophelia", and even "Irene", are poor examples of what a hurricane really can do. It's been over 15 years since our last "major" hurricane landfall (Hurricane Fran, 1996). Meteorologists define "major" hurricanes as Category 3 or higher. Fran was a low-end Category 3 storm (115 mph winds), but few will forget it.

Let's hope we don't make any new "memories" this year...

(TO READ MORE BLOG ENTRIES FROM JERRY, CLICK ON THE LINK BELOW)

By: Jerry Jackson