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Dear Monica:

Dear Monica:

#32 in a series, beginning here and listed here

Brought to you now for timeliness:

Dear Monica: Can I be you for Halloween?

I know it's a strange question, and that it unnerved you for a while. It must have been a bit weird, early on, when it was mixed in with a bit of hero-worship. ("Monica is a goddess. We can't disturb Monica. But if we don't, this garb is going to stand up in the middle of the night and kill us in our sleep. Monica, help!") It always was a joke, and I'm glad that eventually you were amused by it as well. Of course, it did give me the idea to be oidhche for Halloween one year, which made a much better costume.

Trying to be you wouldn't be a matter of different clothes and hairstyle, anyway. I would have to try to capture the essence of your personality as well. I don't think my acting ability is up to that. I would have to balance adorable cuteness with devastating sophistication, mature competence with childlike joy and sense of fun, sharp and sometimes biting wit with considerate affection. Even then, no one could emulate the spark of whatever it is that makes so many of us value you so highly and want to make you happy.

I wouldn't want to be you, or anyone else, for anything more than a Halloween joke. Most of the time I'm fairly comfortable with who I am, and while I've got some issues, who doesn't? At least I'm used to my own problems. I wouldn't know where to begin to deal with anyone else's. However, I think I could do worse than trying to work toward a few of the things about you that I admire - and not just for the holiday.