“As the Lodge Turns” Episode 24: A Spooky, Beefy Lodge Halloween!

 On this episode of “As the Lodge Turns”…

Tonight is one of my favorite holidays: Halloween!

You might think that dogs wouldn’t care about Halloween – after all, we don’t get any candy. But I look forward to it all year; humans dress up in colorful, chewable costumes, glowing pumpkins grin from every porch, and lots of strange children show up at our house begging for food. There are so many exciting sights and smells, I don’t mind being spooked by spiders, bats, and ghosts!

And this Halloween is extra special, because my parents and I are spending it at the Lodge’s Halloween party! There’s even going to be a costume contest; I have no idea what my costume is because Mom and Dad slipped it on me when I was distracted by a treat.

When we arrive at the party, all the other dogs are there and their costumes are amazing! While Mom and Dad chat with the other parents, I say hello to my friends, Ruby and Gibbs.

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“Hi Bing!” Ruby says, turning about in a circle excitedly. She’s wearing a bright red lobster costume with claws that hang down at her chest.

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“I’ll be keeping an eye on you,” Gibbs says, flashing a heroic grin at me in his Superman cape.

Why does he need to keep an eye on me? Do I look like a villainous beagle?

“Bing, have you been bobbing yet?” Ruby asks, leading me to a large pail by the fireplace.

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Bobbing? I’ve never heard of that…I hope it’s nothing illegal, or I’ll be breaking my oath as a Lodge deputy!

I hesitantly peer over the edge of the silver bucket. There are pieces of beef floating in the water, just a nose’s reach away. This is too good to be true…

“Isn’t it awesome? I’ve already bobbed a lot tonight,” Ruby says, leaning over the pail as if transfixed.

Suddenly a dog I’ve never seen before brushes past me to stand by Ruby. She’s an older golden retriever with a soft, white face; there’s a sparkly pink skirt wrapped around her like a princess’s dress.

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“Oh, I’m sorry, Marley,” Ruby says, moving out of the way. Marley doesn’t acknowledge her words, but happily dunks her head in the pool of beef.

“Her vision and hearing aren’t as good as they used to be, but she’s very friendly. That’s her younger brother, Bentley,” Ruby explains, nodding to a golden retriever wearing a beaver costume. “When she’s finished you should give it a go!”

Once Marley moves on, I cautiously approach the bucket. After a few seconds of staring, I dip my snout into the delicious water. It’s not as easy to get the beef as you might think! As I snap at the pieces, they shift and slip away from me in the water. I turn my head and try keeping my mouth open in the hopes that the beef will just drift into it; finally I manage to snag a piece!

“Attention everyone! We will now begin the costume contest!”

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For now I’ll have to stop bobbing, but I’ll definitely be back for seconds later.

We all line up with our parents; everyone looks so great, I don’t know how the judges will pick a winner! One by one we walk in front of them, showcasing our costumes. Ruby, the lobster, tries to return to water (the beef pail), but her dad brings her back on track to wow the judges.

Gibbs flies to the judges in his Superman cape, and Cocoa Bean struts her stuff in a cute hot dog costume. Marley is also distracted by the beef pail, but wins the judges’ applause for her sparkle. Her brother Bentley is next, and he chooses to show off his beaver costume in character; he leaps onto the table as he walks towards them!

Finally it’s my turn. I’m not much of a performer, but I manage to walk in front of the judges with a surprising level of confidence. They laugh a little and clap as Mom leads me away. I wonder what my costume is…

“And now to announce our winners…”

I hold my breath. Did I impress the judges?

“First is our winner for Scariest Costume. Ruby, swim this way!”

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“Our winner for Funniest Costume will surely relish her victory! Congratulations, Cocoa Bean!”

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“And last but nawingly not least, our winner for Best Costume: Bentley the Beaver!”

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The winners each receive a doggie bag full of goodies, and even though I didn’t win, I’m happy for them! This party has been so fun, but I really wish I could see what I look like…

Suddenly I catch my reflection in the window. Pointed ears…could it be…?

THEY’VE TURNED ME INTO A CAT!!!!!!!!!!!!!

…to be continued…

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Meredith Kimple, blog writer extraordinaire… as a stressed out UNC student!!