Halloween and Tim Burton Show – How Was Your Weekend?


First, an anecdote. My wife noticed that the light in Jax’s room was on. She found out that earlier in the day, Gray opened the door (it’s generally kept closed and they aren’t allowed in there without asking us first) and left the light on after checking the room out. When she asked why he went in there, especially on this day (Halloween was a huge holiday for Jax) he said he just felt like going in. We’ve always thought Gray has a particularly strong spirit and connection, and I think he was drawn in there. Just a reminder that Jax was with us, celebrating and having fun.

Our family brought a bit of Gotham to our quiet neighborhood on Friday. Gray dressed as Batman, Ellie as Catwoman, my wife was Robin and I painted my face up as The Joker. Marvel visited us in the form of my nephew as The Hulk and my wife’s brother and his fiance brought some DC back as Clark Kent Transforming in to Superman and Lois Lane, respectively.

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We spent the evening on our front lawn with chili, tortillas, corn bread and Halloween goodies. The kids did some crafts, I blasted some music and we watched the night unfold in front of us.

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Much thanks to my wife for making me up as The Joker. Except when she tried to stick the paint brush in my eye. Twice. I yellowed out like a little biiiiiiiiiiiittttttttttttttccccc…..I don’t know how you women do it. She might as well have poking a machete at my eye when she tried to paint under my bottom eyelashes. I yelled at her to stop. Twice.


I scared the Bat poop out of Gray when I unveiled myself. He was genuinely spooked. Fortunately after a couple of minutes he warmed to the idea. But he cautiously watched me the rest of the night.

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Two houses to our left the neighbors annually spook the neighborhood with a mysterious walk way backed by a disguised voice on a microphone talking to the trick-or-treaters.

“I’d actually feel more comfortable if we started the other way,” he said as we began to head out to beg for candy. Batman’s gotten soft over the years.

He took charge as we paraded through the neighborhood, always pushing our line forward and on to the next house. Ellie always waited for her cousin, Liam. While Gray had no abandon stomping up to front doors, Ellie’s trepidation seemed to subside with The Hulk next to her.


In all, it was a very fun night. Even though our neighborhood was quiet again before 9 p.m. It’s Halloween on a Friday night, people! WTF?

Gray fell asleep on me at the end. He has this ability to turn in to a sack of potatoes once he finally sleeps. Here he is just before pajamas.



We spent most of the day relaxing. At one point, my wife and I were on the couch chilling when Ellie crawls up, lays across me on her back and just hangs out with her head off my left arm, sprawled out. She loves cats. She wants a cat more than a dog. She was Catwoman for Halloween. I swear she was a cat in another life.

At night the kids dressed up once more in their costumes and we went to the Tim Burton Show that Popzilla Gallery and my friend Sam fantastically put together. Strangers kept asking to take pics with the mini Batman and Catwoman. The gallery was jammed and it seemed like a terrific turn out for opening night. The art work was amazing. As we searched for parking in a nearby garage, we passed Edward Scissorhands having his blades strapped on by a friend in jeans and a t-shirt. There were several characters in cosplay roaming around. Gray made sure to stay away from him in the gallery. We bought a few prints, including this Catwoman piece to hang on Ellie’s side of the room.


We finished the night eating dinner at 9 p.m. at Lazy Dog Cafe. We didn’t carry the sack of potatoes to bed until nearly 11 p.m. Needless to say, we spent Sunday recovering.

Enjoy these other pics from the gallery. Go here if you want to buy anything yourself. IMG_4356 IMG_4357 IMG_4361 IMG_4362 IMG_4354 IMG_4360 IMG_4359 IMG_4358 IMG_4363 IMG_4364 IMG_4366


It’s October, bittttccchhhheeessss


It’s October, my favorite month. I don’t care what yours is. October is the best.

It’s finally starting to cool off in southern California, except for the week that the Santa Ana winds hit and half the region becomes a giant barbecue. The air feels more crisp. Sure, you people up in the northwest, east coast and Midwest can laugh. But the slightest chill to the air means crisp out here. AND IT’S FANTASTIC. The leaves turn from green to brown; it’s beautiful.

Football is well into its seasons (college, NFL). Our favorite television shows have returned to hopefully not start sucking. Homeland returned this weekend with LOTS AND LOTS of talking. We finally get to find out how Ted met his children’s mother, Parenthood is back and I have no recollection of how last season ended. The mom doesn’t have cancer anymore, right? RIGHT??? The Walking Dead and American Horror Story start back up. Great, two MORE hours of trying to cram in TV that my wife doesn’t want to watch with me. My DVR will want a raise.

But there are two main reasons why October owns my heart.


The older I’ve gotten, the more Halloween romanticizes me. As a kid, I don’t remember caring a whole lot about Halloween. I mean, sure I dressed up and trick-or-treated, and it was fun, but it came and went and that was it. Now, I find everything about the holiday enchanting. Black and orange are like the best color combination possible, right? Throw in some purple and holy crap why use any other color combos at all. Candles, ominous trees, fog, tombstones. Spooky is sexy.

(I love that commercial. This was from 2012. It’s a play-on of the Knott’s commercial for the regular park.)

At 14-years-old, a freshman at El Modena High School, I first went to Knott’s Scary Farm. That began an annual tradition of 12 consecutive trips to the fright farm. Until finally no one wanted to go with me. This year I’m going to Universal Halloween Horror Nights for the second time. Last year’s The Walking Dead tram ride blew my f’ing mind. AND IT’S BACK!


The week after Universal we’re taking the kids to Mickey’s Halloween Party. Two years ago we took Jax, then 3, and the infant twins. Jax was in heaven. And so was I. Fog oozes off the Rivers of America. Halloween music blasts from party spots. The villains are out, cruising around. And the haunted mansion is transformed into The Nightmare Before Christmas ride. I could sit outside the mansion, illuminated by candles and jack-o-lanterns, for hours. I feel warm and fuzzy gazing at the beauty.



I’ve seriously considered a cemetery scene for a tattoo. That’s how much I like the atmosphere. I’d get it along my rib cage. Which is really just blubber, and why I haven’t done it. It’d be like inking a water bed. Anyway, the image in my head, which I can’t describe, is black and white. A creepy willow tree. Crosses and unmarked tombstones, to be filled in later. But three marked tombstones – Presley, Jax and Addison. Fucking morbid, huh?

Baseball Postseason

Ever since I was 9, when I started Little League, fell in love with Wally Joyner and the Angels and memorized The Natural, I’ve been obsessed with baseball. To put it lightly. I’m a baseball fan first, an Angels fan second.


October 1 marks the beginning of postseason baseball. If the World Series goes a full seven games, it’ll end on the 31st. So pretty much, the entire month is postseason baseball. Every game matters. The intensity is ramped up. The pressure boils. My wife actually pays attention, it’s that captivating.

The New York Yankees aren’t in it this year. So that’s a bonus. I’ll be rooting for a first-round exit for the Boston Red Sox. And I’ll enjoy watching my friends and family live and die by each Dodgers game.

But all of it makes me miss Jax even more. I want to watch the Dodgers and Braves with the the lights out in our house, candles lit, fake jack-o-lantern glowing in the kitchen, my right arm wrapped around his shoulders and his head resting against my side. I want to watch his excitement after a collision at home plate or diving catch. I want him to be disappointed when I put him to bed in the 7th inning of a 4-3 game, only to tell him in detail how it ended the next day.

I want him to beg me to watch Scream. I want to watch him flip through the Halloween costume catalog as he flops between five different costume ideas. I want to carve a pumpkin with him. I want him to help execute my weekly plans to scare Gray. I really, really want to take him to Mickey’s Halloween Party again.


October would’ve been Jax’s favorite month, too. I just know it.