Saturday, October 31, 2009

a heartening development

I had LOTS of trick or treaters this year. LOTS. More than previous years. I gave out almost all the candy I bought.

This makes me happy. I see trick or treating as one of the simple pleasures of childhood. (I realize some may disagree with me for religious reasons, and that's fine for you. I grew up in a fairly observant family and there never seemed to be "evil" or satanic overtones to Halloween to me - and of course the next day is All Saint's Day. We kind of saw it in two ways: first, as a fun day to go out and do what you don't normally do (go out at night, eat more candy than normally permitted) and second, as a day to laugh at what scares you).

I'm glad it's not been swept away completely by the increased "convenience" or imagined greater "safety" of taking the kids to the mall instead, or doing a parking lot "trunk or treat." Oh, maybe some of the kids I saw did that too, but they also got out to do the old-school way of trick or treating, like I did as a kid.

I always try to buy the "good" candy; on a tip from a parent I know, this year I went for Skittles and 3 Musketeers bars and little Twix bars, those all seemed to be big hits. Most of the kids thanked me and a few really got excited when they saw what they were getting.

I like seeing all the trick or treaters. The tiny little kids in their tiny little costumes (cutest one this year - a babe in arms dressed as a bumblebee), the slightly older kids trying to pick the coolest or goriest costume (there were quite a few grim reapers this year, and there was one kid dressed as a Zombie Michael Jackson. Maybe a bit inappropriate, I don't know, but it was a pretty good costume (it was homemade)).

It makes me happy that this tradition survives. I hope it continues to, despite all the "bad news" about sex offenders and danger lurking in the candy and the recession and all that other crap - when you're a kid, you don't remember what's going on in the news (I don't remember much of Carter other than that he had a big toothy grin and used to be a peanut farmer, and I don't really remember the Carter Recession or the oil crisis (other than waiting in long lines to buy gas with my dad and him cussing a bit about it) but you do remember stuff like trick or treating.

And I think parents do, too. I know I get a lot of pleasure, even as a non-parent, from handing out the candy - it must be a lot of fun to take your kid out and see them get excited and have them all dressed up.


Mr. Bingley said...

We had some trick-or-treaters this year as well, which was nice. Usually we don't get any.

I never really understood the objections to it, much like I never understood the 'christian' objections to booze.

CGHill said...

After almost nothing for the first few years I lived in this house, things started to pick up last year. I'm one of those weird people who not only doesn't object to kids in the neighborhood, I don't even tell them to get off my lawn. Not that they get on it in the first place.