Boo! Halloween greetings...or commentary from a Browns fan?

So there I was: Walking down the street, minding my own business, just like any other normal citizen of these United States. Sporting my Browns gear, too (okay, so much for the 'normal' part), but I was feeling unusually chipper. Perhaps it was because Randy Lerner had sold the team. Maybe it was that I'd had my ankle bracelet removed. Or, perhaps it was that I'd heard Jim Swayze tell me that "There's a really big sale at Half Price Books." See? A virtual plethora of reasons to be giddy.

Anyway – lest I spend my entire allotted word count on my reasons for happiness – I happened upon three Westlake youth as I traversed the merry streets of the same city. Now, I would venture to guess that the three were probably early teens, but it was difficult to say with any degree of certainty, as the trio were all sporting Halloween costumes.

One was a Demon. (In Westlake? How incredibly creative!) One looked as if he was trying to be a Justin Bieber-type, and I don't have a clue what the third kid was. Actually, I'm not even certain if it was a boy or a girl, but he/she automatically gets my personal endorsement simply for NOT trying to look like Justin Bieber, or a Westlake Demon, for that matter. Seriously, whoever told their kid to do the Demon thing should lose their "parent" card. Maybe they should even be stripped of their "World's Best Parent" coffee mug, too.

I'm going to go out on a limb here and speculate the three were headed to a Halloween party nearby. You laugh, but there's also a slim chance they were headed to a Bieber look-alike contest. Or a Westlake pep rally.

In any event, I wanted these kids to know I was hip - you know, that they weren't passing just any ordinary old guy on the street (where's my stinkin' boom box when I really need it?) - so I said something really cool, like, "Your costumes rock, dudes." In these days of political correctness, I don't want to offend anyone – okay, maybe I really, really wanted to offend the guy in the Demon costume, but I didn't want to maybe get beat up – so I opted for the safe, generic compliment.

Kids these days, they can be so hurtful. I mean, here I am – perhaps I mentioned earlier that I mind my own business, but it bears repeating – I'm minding my own business, and reaching out to tomorrow's leaders, extending the proverbial olive branch. And what do I get to show for all my effort?

As they're passing by, one of the kids comments, "No, Dude, that 'Browns fan costume' you're wearing is awesome. Hilarious – as if anybody's REALLY a Browns fan." Of course, they're all laughing, fist-bumping, high-fiving, generally having a good old time at my expense. Imagine that: ME – the guy who minds his own business – the butt of Browns jokes. 

Seriously, we're leaving the fate of the world in the hands of these insensitive – if you'll pardon the expression – "Demons"?

All I can say is, "Thank you, Mike Holmgren."

Jeff Bing

Lifelong Westlake resident who dabbles in writing whenever the real world permits. My forte is humor and horror...What a combo!

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Volume 4, Issue 22, Posted 7:30 PM, 10.30.2012