Halloween has careened up the path to America’s second-favorite holiday. It comes in right behind Christmas, and way ahead of the Fourth of July. One of the reasons why Halloween is so beloved is that it offers folks a chance to dress up and go undercover for a 24-hour period. (Or, for some lucky people, an entire week of parties, parades, and trick-or-treating.) Transforming into something out of the ordinary is so intoxicating that it isn’t just reserved for children, adults, and everyone in between. Nope, October 31 hijinks travel beyond the realm of mammals, and are happily embraced by our plush pets as well. Particularly, Feisty Pets.
While I was at the periodontist’s office this week — yep, it’s that old punch line: my teeth are great, but the gums have got to go—my dentist was admiring my pocketbook. She liked the design, an illustrated look of London, complete with the famous red telephone booths, Big Ben, and two Swinging Sixties birds with umbrellas and miniskirts. But even beyond the Nicole Lee drawings, she liked the Aurora squishie I have hanging from a loop. The calico cat is a cute plush pal, and it’s rendered me a lot of compliments over the past year. It’s funny how a tiny stuffed animal can open up avenues of conversation. And my little patchwork pal does just that. Another feline that is a guaranteed focal point is Pusheen. Pusheen definitely knows how to push the right buttons for chatting and laughing.
It’s not unusual to run into an unusual scenario when one is strolling through Times Square. As a matter of fact, meeting the unusual is quite the usual for New Yorkers and the people who love them. The other day I was walking in the theater district, hurrying to get past the Naked Singing Cowboy, the semi-nude painted ladies, and the always combative costumed characters (Spider-Man and Batman have actually had throw-down fistfights). As I was trying to perfect my nonchalant speedwalking, I actually stopped dead in my tracks. Now, for a person who grew up in Brooklyn to stop smack-dab in the middle of Midtown Manhattan, there had to be something worth seeing. There was: it was the opening of the Line Friends department store. And in the window of this centrally located business were some of the cutest, cuddliest, and largest stuffed animals I’d ever seen!