Halloween Rant

Well, maybe not so much a rant as just thinking about things.

When I was a kid. . . . .

I know, eye-roll statement, right?  Still, when I was a kid, nobody decorated their yards or houses for Halloween. That was reserved for Christmas.  I don’t know when Halloween became a  high-cost event here in the States, but I’m sure it happened when I wasn’t looking 🙂

I lived in a middle class neighborhood in north Minneapolis when I was in elementary school, up through the 4th grade. Halloween, for us, was just fun. Nobody was getting all wrapped around the axle yet, and nobody was afraid. We dressed up in old sheets or hobo-looking clothes, or made gypsy costumes or clown costumes out of whatever we had around the house. Nobody spent money on pre-made costumes.

We went around the neighborhood with our friends, ringing doorbells and being greeted by people we at least had seen on the sidewalk at some point.  Apartment buildings were great places for trick-or-treating, lots of  doors all in one building. We were welcomed by everyone, and we had a blast.  We were given homemade treats, and no one worried about pins or razors or poison. We got apples, popcorn balls, a wide assortment of candies, cookies, and even some cheap little toys.  Boxes of Cracker Jacks were always fun because you got the popcorn AND the toy inside.

No parents were with us, unless someone was taking their toddlers out for the fun. It was safe, and harmless, and no one even thought about satanic influences or sacrificing animals. There were probably some pranks that were harmful.  I’m not naive enough to believe that everyone in 1953 was innocent as a baby. But it was a different era, and our favorite TV programs were Father Knows Best and Walt Disney Presents.  Miley Cyrus was not even a distant nightmare, and children were not smarter than their parents. Andy Griffith was a role model, and Opie got paddled when he was disobedient.  It was a good time to grow up.

I’m appalled at what Halloween has become today. I want no part of it. We never, in 20 years, have had trick-or-treaters here because they’d have to walk  25 feet between houses.  Their parents take them to high-density neighborhoods so they can get more loot.  I don’t understand the average $80 that I heard yesterday is “normal” for Americans to spend on Halloween. I don’t understand the fascination with things of darkness, with what is truly wicked.  I know there are some for whom it is still just innocent fun, but that’s not the norm.

It’s sad.

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5 thoughts on “Halloween Rant

  1. Try growning up on a farm like I did. We didn’t get trick or treaters unless some parent was willing to load up the kids in a car and drive them around. We had apples for the few who came because, we had apple trees. I never participated just, well, Mom didn’t like me begging for candy for which I rendered no service and threatened to “trick.” So, that was the end of it. For some reason, now it is a big license to vandalize even if one is not trick or treating. Seems every year someone does evil things to the helium balloons in our local Wal Mart. Since I am the service vendor for them, every Monday after Halloween I have to show up to correct the damage. Yes, it is sad.

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    1. I need to do some research to find out when and where the whole idea of trickortreat originated. I never thought of it from your mom’s perspective. It was just a fun thing we looked forward to. Interesting, to get different viewpoints.

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      1. Chris Johnson

        I believe I read somewhere that in Ireland/Scotland the tradition which we get the jack o’lantern thing from was they carved turnip lanterns to scare away the wicked spirits that walked the night. Halloween is a witches’ Sabbat known as Sowen marking the death of the sun god and so celebrates the ‘opening’ between the real world and the spirit world. Wicked spirits would walk the night and play tricks on those who did not placate them. The turnip lanterns would repel them. Pumpkins were more plentiful in America when the immigrants brought their traditions with them so we use pumpkins now. This is kind of jumbled but I think you can catch my drift.

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  2. Totally agree. We don’t partake in the Halloween events. Even at our church now it seems the “Harvest Festivals” or “Trunk or Treat” events now allow people to dress in costumes that just don’t seem appropriate. More appalling is that fellow Christians seem to think it is acceptable and it is all in fun. Just can’t figure out how they can’t see the evilness that has crept in to so many of our holidays now, especially Halloween. I have a youngin’ still at home so I know how easy he gravitates towards the “creepy” stuff. Fortunately, we are teaching him to discern the differences and he just turned 10 so he is starting to understand it more.

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