Trick or Treat? Well, that is the question about this time of the year, and I say, “Neither one.” At the risk of sounding “Un-American”, I have to admit that I don’t like Halloween. I don’t like it as an adult, and I never particularly cared for it as a kid, either. As a kid, I did the “trick or treat” thing out of obligation, because it was sort of expected. Everyone at school was excited about their costumes and parties and of course, Trick-or-treating. Not that I didn’t like eating the candy. I liked eating the candy. But dressing up and going to stranger’s (or even to friends) houses and asking for candy did not fit in well with my introverted and socially awkward self. Neither did parties.
I only remember one year when it was fun. I think I must have been 10 or 11 years old, and my favorite teacher organized a school party where everyone dressed up like a character from literature. (Yes, even then, I was already a book nerd.) I chose the “Calico Cat” from the poem by Eugene Field which I had memorized that year. Upon re-reading the poem now, I find it quite violent, therefore, I am sure it is now banned. Anyway, my mother sewed me a cat costume out of a red and yellow calico material, complete with tail and a hood with ears. I loved that costume, and it is the only one I actually remember from childhood. I think I had a good time at the class party as well, but that part doesn’t stand out in my memory.
I only went to one other memorable Halloween party, when I was in my twenties, teaching public school music, and one of my teacher friends had a costume party at her house. She was one of those “socially ept” people who you’d love to hate but just can’t because she was so darned nice. She hosted pretty much every party I attended in my twenties, when I thought it might be important somehow, to go to parties. So I sewed two costumes for myself and my husband to be Robin Hood and Maid Marion. That was the last time I used my sewing machine. It was also the only time (to my knowledge) that my husband has ever in his life worn tights. I don’t know what happened to the costumes. Goodwill, I think. It was a fun party though, as parties go.
As an adult, I mostly see Halloween as nothing more than (yet another) excuse for adults to go out and get drunk and stupid. What a combination, that! A night when there are bunches of young kids roaming the streets begging for candy, whilst at the same time a bunch of intoxicated adults are driving on those same streets! Great. What an awesome combination that makes.
Anyway, there are many reasons to like or dislike Halloween, but I think my reasons mostly have to do with my home-body-ness. And the fact that I have no kids of my own. Which is probably a good thing. I am 100% certain that God gives everyone the exact number of children that He wants them to have. In my case, this number is zero. And there is nothing wrong with this. I like my friends children, on an individual basis, you know, but maybe teaching elementary school music for a couple of years back then changed my outlook on children in general. Being a good parent is a truly hard job and those who do it well amaze me! I think good parents are heroes.
As a tradition, if I’m not working on that day, my husband and I and one of our friends usually spend the evening in our living room watching a non-scary movie while eating pizza. We eat candy too, but the window shades are drawn and the porch light is off. I don’t answer the door and give out candy. Some people think that’s mean, but I think it is sensible.
Ok, I’ve said it. Do you think I am a horrible person, chers lecteurs, for not liking Halloween?
This post is part of Linda G Hill’s “Stream of Consciousness Saturday” — Click and read, click and join in! Your Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is: “-eat.” Use the word “eat” or add letters to it to make a different word. Don’t cheat!