After sprinting several laps around my kitchen while screaming with my Bichon Roxy trotting behind agitated and barking, I finally settled back down to the computer. Had my eyes played tricks on me? No. There it was. The post with my husband Danny and me in our Addams Family costumes had made the cover of Freshly Pressed on WordPress. I had been told on a WP forum the week before that the chance of being FP’d was, “one in a million.” As I began to call Danny, another line beeped in.
The elation turned to frenzied panic. The Halloween brunch I thought I was having on Thursday, got moved up to the next morning. I only had 5 hours before going out for the evening to play tennis. I had just written about how I decorate for the season and not one pumpkin or witch had been unpacked!
So I did what anyone in my position would do. I threw myself into Granny gear. No, not the easiest cog on your bicycle; Granny from the Beverly Hillbillies! Do you remember when she sped up in fast motion, only stopping to catch her breath when she finished her project? That was me. I finished cleaning, then busted downstairs and pulled out all of the Halloween storage containers. After 5 hours of rushing around the house and decorating like a madwoman including hanging bats from the ceiling, covering mantles and tables with cheesecloth “webs” and setting my haunted table, I was finished. Now I really felt like an old granny; completely exhausted with my chest heaving while trying to suck oxygen into my lungs.
The next morning I woke up and raced to the computer. The stats were mind-boggling! After baking a slab apple cake and finishing the preparations for the brunch, I flew down into the basement to look for a ghost costume. We read a collection of short stories for the meeting and I had added a couple of my own. Dressing like Maeve from “Stolen Regret,” I wore an old fitted white dress purchased at a garage sale years ago and covered it with sheer curtains, topping it off with a pale blonde page-boy wig and red shawl.
Everyone brought a dish to share and as soon as the fun get-together began, it was over. I took a deep breath and looked around my house, pleased that all the decorations were up. We could enjoy them for the remaining weeks in October.
I went upstairs to undress and that is when the problem arose. The “invisible zipper” on my ghostly costume had stuck. I tried moving it up and down and it wouldn’t budge. The dress was fitted so it couldn’t be wiggled out of. “What am I going to do? This is so uncomfortable! There’s no way I can wear this for the next 6 hours until Danny gets home from work.” The unbreathable polyester blend fabric started to overheat my worn-out body. The long sleeves suddenly seemed too tight and binding.
I hurried back downstairs and peeked out the windows, but as usual no neighbors were around. I thought of calling someone to come over and release me from my claustrophobic wardrobe, but that seemed like a ridiculous option. Driving in the car to a friend’s house would be even more outrageous. I tried to pull the zipper down again, but the dress was so tight and it was in such an awkward position, it just wouldn’t slide. “Argh!”
“It would be so convenient if I could dislocate my shoulder so I could slide out of this stupid dress.” I continued struggling and then thought, “If I were double-jointed I could just reach up and unzip myself. Duh! My elbows are double jointed and make my arms stick out at funny angles. Maybe that’s the whole problem!”
Movement caught my attention through the front dining room window. The landscape guys had come to mow my neighbor’s lawn! My heart leapt in my chest. I sprang to the front door and opened it wide. I lifted up the dress so I wouldn’t trip while running down the stairs. In full ghostly white make-up with blue circles around my eyes, blonde wig, and costume I dashed down my driveway and crossed the street. The three men gawked at me with blank stares.
“Okay!” I said, “First of all I want you to know that I have no shame.” They broke into smiles.
“The zipper is stuck on my dress and I need someone to unzip me. And if you’re wondering, I had a Halloween party this morning.” The thirty-something guy closest to me ran over to help release me. I turned my back and just like magic, he slid the zipper down my back. It was too embarrassingly easy!
“I am sure this will be a fun story for you guys to share. Oh well. Thank you!”
I spun around and darted across the street with my bra strap exposed across my back, thinking to myself, “They never said a word. I think they were in shock!”
As I opened up the front door of my house, a question came to mind. “How would Granny have handled the wardrobe malfunction?” I changed my clothes, went back downstairs to my computer, and shifted my fingers into Granny gear.
When was the last time you found yourself in hyper-drive?
Have you ever been in an unavoidable and embarrassing situation?
Photo by S. Lindau
Granny in high gear racing in a buggy.