Young Albert Spinner is the son of Cloverdale's Jewish Cantor, Moses Spinner. The Spinners live on Clover Lane.
Albert loves Halloween.
"Halloween's almost here," Albert said to village Constable Willard after school last Monday. Albert was hiding under a row of shrubs owned by 82 year old Selma Thorn. Selma thought she heard something outside her front window during her afternoon nap. She struggled to her feet, paused to let the dizziness pass, then waddled to the window for a good examination. A moment later she was on the phone to the village Constabulary.
"Something ungodly is thrashing about in my front shrubs," Selma was easily excited, and knowing of her heart condition, the constable thought it best to make a visit sooner rather than later.
Selma Thorn suffers from a heart condition.
The Constabulary is on her speed dial
Ten minutes later Constable Willard arrived by bicycle. Selma intercepted him on her front porch. "Whatever it is, it's over there." She pointed toward the street where a row of waist high shrubs marked the boundary between her front lawn and the sidewalk. Something black with bits of silver could be seen crouched under several branches of yellow, red and orange. The Constable suggested she go in and make herself a cup of tea to calm her nerves while he dealt with the matter. He stepped down from the porch, paused for a quick think, then walked toward a pair of frightened eyes peering out at him from under the shrub.
"Albert, come on out from under there." The constable recognized Albert from the costume he was wearing. He'd seen it on a previous call the night before. Albert was out well past his bedtime, wandering about his next door neighbor's back garden - flashing his scissor hands. The neighbor mistook them for knives and called the police.
Albert struggled to crawl out from under the shrub, a task made more difficult because of the scissors tied to his fingers.
"What did I tell you yesterday?" Constable Willard was wearing his exaggerated unhappy face, used for the village's youthful offenders.
"Not to wear my costume outside until Halloween," Albert mumbled.
"Why did I tell you that?"
"Because it scares people."
"That's right, because it scares people." The Constable was prepared to go into a lengthy explanation but was interrupted by Albert.
"But its suppose to scare people. It's Halloween!" Albert thought his logic was sound.
"It's not Halloween yet." Constable Willard took Albert by his left scissorhand. Together they walked toward the sidewalk and the Constable's bicycle. "Let's get you home before you frightened another old lady."
"I was only being nice," Albert explained. "She needed those shrubs cut and I wasn't going to charge her a nickel to do it." The Constable ignored him.
Summoned by Selma and her speed dial, the neighbors were out on their front lawns and porches watching Constable Willard take Albert away. It made for a nice distraction on what would normally be a boring October afternoon.
Albert was happy for the attention. It gave him a chance to show off his costume. Constable Willard was ready for his shift to end.