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The Halloween store

There is a Halloween store set up in the corpse of the old Circuit City building. I can’t remember if such stores existed when I was a child, but in the past few years they’ve become popular in my town. The Halloween stores appear out of nowhere at the end of September, rent a huge empty space left by a recently deceased store, and then just as quickly disappear by the first days of November, making me wonder if they existed at all. You never know where they’ll show up next year, so you just have to keep a lookout for the big yellow banner hanging outside your local strip mall.

I went to the Circuit City Halloween store yesterday to look for a costume for the Run Like Hell race that is only a week away. It was odd to see rows of ghost masks and sexy nurse costumes lining the walls store, instead of the rows of flatscreen TVs that I remember. It was rather depressing to look at all the female costumes that featured skinny, provocative models on the labels, because it would be nice if you didn’t have to be thin and busty to find a costume. I read the label for the hot, policewoman outfit which said the hat was included and thought to myself, “Are the boobs included too?” Then around the corner I discovered I could buy a pair of fake boobs if I needed them.

It was hard finding an outfit that would be warm and that I could also run 3 miles in, but I found something and tried it on in the makeshift dressing room. I think it looks delightful, but the 8-year-old girl who stumbled into my fitting room only reacted in shock and apology. I will post a picture of myself in my outfit next week after the run, but I’ll let the anticipation build until then!

I took my package to the front register and wondered why this place was called Halloween Express when it took foreeeeeever to check out. I felt bad for the poor girl at the front register. She clearly was only going to be employed here for a month, she was the only person checking people out, and the credit card machine stopped working every time the phone rang. None of the other staff were any help, and I became increasingly anxious because the person in line behind me did not seem to understand the concept of appropriate personal space. I wondered why some of the other shoppers were bothering to look for costumes, because they were creepy enough without them. Then I paid and left, disappearing as quickly as the Halloween store soon will.

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14 Comments

Karen • October 23, 2009 at 10:46 am

There must be a chain of Halloween stores that take up old Circuit City stores. We have the same thing here in Houston. I haven’t paid attention to their name.

Halloween has really become a big deal now. In our area, people decorate their houses like they did for Christmas.

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Katie • October 23, 2009 at 12:39 pm

They are all over the place here too (Northern California) and even in the old Circuit City.

Hoping to do that this weekend and hoping they have some helpful staff!

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LacubriousOne • October 23, 2009 at 3:17 pm

We have them too, but they’re called Johnny Brocks Dungeon. I think there is a year round location in STL which sprouts satellite locations this time of year.

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Quix • October 23, 2009 at 7:02 pm

I think I heard somewhere that they had an agreement with all the old circuit cities to use them this year, but that could just be rumor.

Can’t wait to see pics of the costume!

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Katy • October 23, 2009 at 7:34 pm

We have one of those stores in our deserted Circuit City also! It was there last year also. Weird, is the rest of US filled with Halloween stores in Circuit City?

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Marie • October 23, 2009 at 8:05 pm

Our Halloween store is in the old Borders store. I couldn’t believe how many walls of the sexy/slutty costumes there were! The only outfit in the store I could see myself wearing and liking was the “Roman Goddess” costume, a floor-length dress, but it cost $50 without accessories!

Since then I’ve decided to be a crossword puzzle for Halloween. I’m going to make a skirt and top out of crossword puzzle print fabric, and wear a pencil and magnifying glass on a necklace :-)

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The Merry • October 23, 2009 at 9:41 pm

What is up with people who like to stand right close behind you in line? I know my butt is cute, but we’ve not been introduced.

One of these days I’ll have to mention to these people the fact that they’re not going to get to the head of the line faster by breathing down my neck.

Who me? Cranky? Naaaah…

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Bethama • October 23, 2009 at 10:35 pm

I’ve got the major nostalgia for Halloween stores, given that I spent the last half of high school working in a store that probably made more than half its annual revenue in October. I was initially hired as seasonal help, and they liked me enough that I never left! This meant that I got to spend a few more Halloweens with them, which involved picking out one of the costumes that was for sale and parading around all day in it every Sunday. My favorite was the Bar Maiden outfit, under which I quickly discovered a need to wear jeans, since my bosses still made me, like, climb ladders.

Looking back, after several unabashedly sexist managers at subsequent jobs, I think I actually appreciate the equality. Retroactively.

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Sara • October 24, 2009 at 11:32 am

I’m also having trouble finding an appropriate female costume, but mine is for a work party, not a run. Why do all the Halloween costumes for women have to be so revealing? Sexy female cop, sexy nurse, sexy angel/devil, etc. I may have to break down and come up with my own costume.

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The Unnatural Mother • October 25, 2009 at 8:30 pm

So what is it… Sponge Bob, Wonder Woman, Sexy French Maid???? The anticipation is killing me, PLUS I need a idea myself!!

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Amanda • October 25, 2009 at 8:48 pm

Ours is in an old Office Depot. I went in and was just disgusted by the female outfits. And the childrens costumes were no better…the section for girls costumes was called “tainted innocence” and it was all mini skirts and tights and all around nastiness. Ugh. I quickly decided to make my own. Rainbow Brite, here I come!

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Zoey • October 25, 2009 at 11:18 pm

Oh, I’m really hoping your costume involves the fake boobs; those could be pretty warm, too, I’m thinking…

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theantijared • October 26, 2009 at 1:53 pm

We have one that replaced a store called “Giant Book Sale”. FYI, they sold books.

I hope your costume involves a notebook.

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Wendy • October 27, 2009 at 10:44 am

My co-worker told me she went to one of those with her daughter and sons. While she and her daughter perused the stuff in front, apparently the boys (aged 17 and 13) headed straight for the back corner where the naughty stuff is displayed, took a picture of one of them wearing the fake boobs, and promptly posted it on Facebook! She started wondering where they were and why they were so quiet, and found them but the damage was done. Needless to say, somebody’s facebook privileges have been revoked indefinitely!

BTW, the Halloween Store in Ann Arbor, MI is also in an old Circuit City.

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Jennette Fulda tells stories to the Internet about her life as a smartass, writer, weight-loss inspiration, chronic headache sufferer, and overall nice person (who is silently judging you). She does this at JenFul now, but you can still have fun perusing her past here.

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