It started with just one pumpkin. And one became two. And two became tradition. And tradition became trademark. By the fourth year, we had officially become serial pumpkiners.
Every year, from 2004 to 2008, and again in 2012, we carved a signature pumpkin for a lucky friend and left it for them as an anonymous Halloween surprise. Here, for your reading pleasure, is the epic tale:
A friendly, baseball-themed pumpkin for our youth minister, a Houston Astros fan. Unfortunately, we don’t have an actual picture of this one, so this should give you a good idea:
A pumpkin with the face of Christ and the words “A priest is ‘en persona Christi’”, carved for our parish priest. We left this with a “ring and run” at the rectory, setting up a hidden camera to film Fr.’s reaction. His dog came out first, sniffed the pumpkin, and then sniffed out Rori. Haha. Fr. Then examined the pumpkin, admired it, and left it outside. We decided after this that we would not again prank a priest, in order to show highest honor and respect for the dignity and sublimity of his office. (Come to think of it, that should be added to The Code.)
This year we went online to find some great ideas for creepy pumpkins, and settled on the “puking pumpkin” and the “cannibal pumpkin.”
Pumpkin A, puking his guts into a cardboard box, was left for our friend Ryan, his wife and their children. The night we dropped it off, there was a police car parked across the street from his house the entire time. We waited for them to leave, but to no avail. So we carried out our plan with the added exhilaration of knowing our “get away” might involve a run-in with civil authorities. It didn’t, thanks be to God.
Pumpkin B, a big pumpkin eating a baby pumpkin, was left for our friend, Krishna.
This year was to be our last official year of pranking, as I was moving away for what we thought would be forever, and we expected never to join our pranking forces again. So we arranged a “Grand Finale” of pumpkin fun!
The first pumpkin was carved for a couple who was celebrating the adoption of their daughter, Lillie.
The other three were miniature pumpkins which were not carved. Instead, we bought Halloween Potato Head pieces and…. “dressed” them. A pirate for Nick, a witch for Jocelyn, and a vampire for Bradley (as if a treasure hunt were not enough 😉 ).
2009-2011: Official prankster retirement.
Then, after 3 years of retirement, we pulled a Michael Jordan and made a return to minor league sport before trying any big-time pranking. We eased our way back with a celebratory pumpkin marking the birth of Lucia, the baby girl born to our friends Jake and Yesenia two days before Halloween. We left this for the munchkin, as we are apt to do, with a “ring and run” at their apartment (on the second story, mind you – a little harder to “run” from), which was unexpected and a bit unsettling for them, but a welcome surprise. Just as we like it to be!