RDP Tuesday: Dead
Old English dēad, of Germanic origin: related to Dutch dood and German tot, also to die1.
Most of my flowers are dead. I have one Gerber Daisy that is valiantly standing against the cold. Only my marigolds are still hardy and glowing in the morning sun.
I don’t like dead. Having ceased to live.
It amazes me that Halloween is now second only to Christmas in money spent on decorations, parties, and so forth. I’d much rather celebrate life.
Back in the ancient days of my childhood, Halloween was a fun time of dressing up in homemade costumes and raiding the neighborhood for treats. Back then, people would give us homemade cookies and other homemade treats like popcorn balls. No one worried about it. It was just fun.
Our costumes ran to ghosts running around in old sheets; pirates, gypsies, clowns, and the occasional mummy. It was fairly cold by the end of October in Minneapolis, so you wanted a warm jacket incorporated into your costume.
There were no stores that set up just for Halloween. If you bought a costume, you probably didn’t live in our neighborhood. The most decorative we were in our school classrooms was black and orange crepe paper strips twisted and tacked to the ceiling.
This could have been my crowd on Halloween in the 1950’s:
Because we lived in a heavily populated neighborhood, no one piled their kids into the van and took them to developments where the pickings were better.
We’ve lived in this house for over 24 years, and I think we may have seen three trick-or-treaters in all that time. There aren’t a lot of little kids in our neighborhood, and the houses are just far enough apart that no one brings their kids here. They all head closer into downtown, where there are developments in which the houses nearly touch each other; lots of duplexes, and a few apartment buildings that brace for the onslaught of various witches, warlocks, and vampires. all closely guarded by vigilant parents.
Well, time passes and things change. Not everything in the 1950’s was ideal, but Halloween was much more innocent, a lot more fun, and a lot less expensive then. I miss it.