9 comments

American Contemporary Funny

“If you follow the herd, you will be treated like cattle.”

He knew he needed a good opening line. He began this speech in the right way. Most of the people in the crowd knew it; those who were new to the group chuckled, smiled and thought that he had said something quite profound.

“I am not going to forget that one.”

“Like something that Mark Twain or that Wilde guy would have said.”

“Did anyone write that down? You have a pen?”

He was proud of the effect produced. Looking over his notes, he realized that he knew this speech so well that he could improvise part of it if he felt that was right.

No, let’s continue with what we have. He grinned and spoke.

“It is our night.”

A few handclaps danced in the air; a few cheers, but in that size of a hall, it did not disturb or distract him from his flow.

“It is our night. And it will continue to be the most important night of the year for all of us as long as there are those willing to send out their children into the dark to collect candy without considering just how damaging such an event can be.”

A “Right on!” shouted out; some yelled, “We’re with you on that one!”

Good, good. This was going so well.

“Some may say that what we do is wrong; some have argued that we are just perverted and have nothing better to do with our time than just disturb the precious lies and thoughts of children and their parents. I say to them, ‘Shame on you!’”

“Shame! Shame!”

“Shame on you for your lies to your children!”

“Shame, shame, shame!”

“Shame on your children for doing whatever they can for candies and treats, all without doing a trick! When did that request disappear?”

“Shame!”

“Shame on our…other halves for telling us that we should look at the ends and not the means!”

More laughter this time, but he wondered if they understood what he meant. Never mind, he had them now.

“And now, let’s get started.”

The first part of the plan appeared on the screen.

*

He realized that it could only be done at night. And that was fine. The night belonged to all of them.

From his central position, he sent them all out into the darkness. Stealth and quiet were what they needed and they got more than enough of both by the time the last house closed down its lights and displays for the evening. All bowls were empty and many stomachs were full and ready to bring those youngsters to the world of sleep. Sugar was not enough to keep them going, even on a long weekend like this one.

Yeah, this was their night.

In white coats, they mapped out the neighborhood and did their duty.

*

“So, how was it?”

It was always good to walk into the applause before it died away. It was thick with cheers and laughter and plenty of smiles and grins.

“Did you do your duty?”

An almost physical roar of joy came as a wave from the crowd of men and women in white coats. They stomped in their seats, stood and cried, and made it known that he would not have to their answer.

It had worked; everything that he had planned had worked.

It was just what he wanted.

*

It began early one morning when a fat little girl, disobeying her mother and father, tiptoed to the kitchen and searched for her bag of candy. The princess costume she wore the previous night was still on and she felt proud about the success of her haul. Two full pillowcases her parents put into a large cardboard box before sending her off to bed.

She could not find it.

Not to worry, she thought. Her parents had several hiding places that she knew quite well (many Christmases and birthdays were spoiled for her, but she did not mind). It was only after she had searched through three guaranteed locations – the garage; the trunk of their SUV; her parents’ secret photograph trunk – that she began to cry and scream.

The parents were actually innocent, as were the parents of the diabetic boy next door who was promised a controlled amount of toffees and the twins across the street who were oh, so good that they did not touch a single thing until the day after. They were all disappointed.

They would have been confused and deeply disturbed to know that they were not alone in this disappointment. All over the country, children were waking up and discovering that all of their candy was gone. A night of heading out and going door to door in familiar and not-so-familiar neighborhoods had not paid off and there was no sign that the holiday had been worth the effort.

The police were called in many cases, but they refused to become involved in any call that provided no evidence of breaking and entering, or offered the chance to trap a thief who targeted fun-size bars of chocolate, licorice, caramels and other goodies. One police officer made the mistake of accusing a child of eating all of her candy the night before and was rewarded with a well-aimed apple aimed at his head (no charges were issued). The cases remained a mystery.

It was not until later in the day, when one of the parents were cleaning up and decided to change the bed sheets in her son’ s room that she made a discovery that was much more terrifying than anything she could have guessed at or dreamt. Under her son’s pillow, she found, not money or any trace of the missing candy, but a card that seemed to be created especially for her child. Other parents would also find the exact same card, report them to the police, and wonder why their sons and daughters had been targeted.

It was a very simple message and one that their parents were too terrified to forget:

From your local dentist:

Isn’t it time that you put down the candy and pick up a toothbrush?

Please use it and make a point of setting an appointment soon

We are watching you…

Ha, ha!

Please don’t forget to floss

October 30, 2021 01:44

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9 comments

Damian Frank
20:49 Nov 19, 2021

This was a really entertaining story, but also something I wouldn't mind seeing IRL! Great story!

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Kendall Defoe
23:12 Nov 19, 2021

Hollywood, here I come... :) Thanks!

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Kaylee Aleece
21:25 Nov 03, 2021

Hey Kendall, This is such an interesting take on Halloween. I love it. You had me thinking this was some religious group on a mission to end trick or treating. I loved that this came from the perspective of a dentist. Very clever!

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Damian Frank
20:47 Nov 19, 2021

Ha, that was my first inclination as well!

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Kendall Defoe
21:31 Nov 03, 2021

I had to wonder who would be so busy on such a night and it finally hit me: the teeth pullers! Thank you for the message.

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Anna Mahoney
21:01 Nov 03, 2021

Great work. Laughed out loud.

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Kendall Defoe
21:32 Nov 03, 2021

All I can do. Many thanks!

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Angel {Readsy}
16:29 Oct 30, 2021

He was proud of the effect produced. Looking over his notes, very well said, very nice story, Good luck

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Kendall Defoe
17:39 Oct 30, 2021

Oh, yes. That is why he is not the T.F. :)

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