Mr. and Mrs. Potato Head

The second Halloween party I went to was lame. I stayed for an hour. I was afraid that if I left sooner, people would call me and say, "Dude, you won't believe what happened right after you left..." That party was in Mission Valley, not far from the Point Loma party I went to next. When I talked to Cindy on the phone, she told me that they'd been having their annual "Boos Bash" for years, and that the people who live behind her and a few houses down have called the cops every year. She's tried giving them bottles of wine to apologize, and she's offered to put them up in a hotel and pay for their dinner out. The neighbors griped, "We shouldn't be run out of our own house." This year, karma kicked those neighbors in the butt. The people directly behind them had a party.

Cindy's other neighbors were more understanding. One came over and said, "I figured, if you can't beat the noise, join the party." Another neighbor didn't stay long but told Cindy before he left that if anyone needed a ride home, he would gladly do it. Now, those are the types of neighbors you want. The cops did drive by but never stopped to break up the party. Cindy tried getting a noise permit, but said that because she lives within two miles of the water, she couldn't.

Cindy had set up strobe lights in the front yard that were flashing on gravestones. When I walked up the driveway, I noticed they had a bar by the garage. One of the party hosts, Grace, offered me a Jell-O shot. She said that she usually brings 300 shots. As she handed it to me, she said, "Do you want it loosed?" It's always hard scooping Jell-O out of those things, so I said, "Sure." As I handed it back to Grace, who was an attractive Asian woman dressed in a stewardess outfit, she stuck her tongue into my Jell-O, slid it around the cup, and handed it back to me. It was sexy... and gross. She smiled as I swallowed it and went back to taking care of others at the bar. I was amused watching the guys dressed as pilots sipping alcohol.

I walked past a water fountain and into the back yard. A guy who seemed a bit drunk tried to jump over the fountain and knocked a drink into a lady. Several people were dancing in the back yard, under colored lights and in front of the elaborate DJ set-up.

I met a guy dressed as Steve Irwin, the crocodile hunter, and his name was Steve. He looked a little like Irwin as well. He had a plastic crocodile with its mouth tied up. I asked him why he didn't have a stingray barb through his chest. "I thought that would be in bad taste." At the previous party, a guy dressed as Irwin had the barb and a bloody baby doll resting in a crocodile's mouth. One lady said, "I don't think this costume is in bad taste. It's a tribute to a great man."

Cindy, who reminded me of Goldie Hawn, was dressed as a circus ringleader. She had one room set up with a variety of food, including gravestone-shaped chips and dip. I heard a guy mention how delicious the mahi mahi was. Cindy was busy walking around and making sure everyone had food and drinks, picking up empty glasses, and greeting people as they arrived. She was moving so fast that I couldn't catch up to talk to her. At one point, she stopped long enough to tell me that she and her boyfriend live in Belgium half the year. Cindy said, "He's Mr. Potato Head this year, and I was going to be Mrs. Potato Head so that my Southern Baptist parents would have at least one photo of us where we shared the same last name."

I lost my camera, and Steve Irwin, who had been snapping photos, offered to shoot a bunch for me. I later found my camera in the living room near photo albums of previous parties. I set my drink down near a woman who sat looking at the albums. After chatting with people across the room, I returned to what I thought was my drink. I tasted orange juice and wondered what had happened to my apple-flavored cocktail. The woman said, "Uh, I think you just drank mine." We laughed about it, and I said, "Don't touch it now, I've got a bad cold." Someone walking by said, "Is it hard going to a party when you're sick?" I replied, "Usually it is, but I'm dressed as Jew Hefner in these pajamas and a smoking jacket. This is what I'd be wearing if I was at home sick."

One man came over and said he enjoyed my column. Cindy added, "It's because of your column that we got six cases of Rock Star Energy Drink here. I read about another party that had it and called them up, and they gave it to us for free."

I asked one guy who was wearing a pinstripe suit if he was supposed to be a gangster. "Thank you," he said. Everyone keeps thinking I'm a pimp." There were several costumes, however, that I couldn't figure out. I asked one guy if he was a dresser. He told me to keep looking at him and try to figure it out. He was a "one night stand." One guy was supposed to be Bob Barker, but I couldn't figure it out. Maureen, one of the three hostesses, was dressed as Cleopatra.

The two Carmen Mirandas were easy enough to figure out, as were two guys dressed as Hooters girls. There were also a few nerds and a grim reaper. Cindy handed out awards, and a guy in a robot outfit with eyes that lit up won for best costume. A woman in a fat suit with a puppy hanging out of the behind won an award. Cindy said, "What clinched it for her were all the 'Lost Dog' flyers she hung on the walls." There was an award for "biggest balls," but I can't remember if Tarzan won that or the guy who was dressed as Nacho Libre.

There're always people at a costume party who throw on a heavy-metal shirt they probably had in their closet. At this party, and at the previous one, I saw Iron Maiden shirts. A guy with a Sex Pistols shirt on at least messed up his hair enough to resemble Sid Vicious.

One guy saw me with the pipe in my mouth and asked if I was Errol Flynn. I said, "Has anyone ever been Flynn for Halloween, and would anyone know who that was?"

As I was leaving, I noticed that there was plenty of booze left, though Cindy had told me that they already ran through five gallons of margaritas. As I went to grab a can of Coke before heading off to the next party, I saw the woman whose drink I drank earlier. She was with her husband. I said, "Can I have a sip of that?"

Crash your party? Call 619-235-3000 x421 and leave an invitation for Josh Board.

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