As Hallow's Eve and sexified anythings draw near I can't help but try and recall why the event never quite excites me. What could be so unappealing about piles of individually-wrapped sugar, "hilarious" costumes and general tom foolery?
I swear I'm not a buzz kill (a majority of the time), but something about nearing quarterlife and trying to make a list of 'must-haves in witch couture' makes me very, very tired.
Once upon a time as a wee little FOB, Halloween was this elusively obscure event that the other kids talked about ad nausuem and I, having spent the toddler/early learning years tethered to a condo, spent the majority of my first two fall months at school trying to figure out how they were allowed to go from house to house asking strangers for candy. I remember approaching my mother one day, a costume parade permission slip in hand, and explaining that a parent's signature on the dotted line would promise a 7 year-old's appearance at school that Friday, dressed in a suitably fun costume (preferably of the home-made variety as prizes wouldn't go to three Rainbow Brites). What a lack of ink-spelled permission equalled, I hadn't known yet.
Of course, my equally foreign mother decided anything drawn from paganism/satanism/too-time-consuming-ism was a definite 'no', so to my horror I was the kid, the foriegn kid, without a costume that day.
The ramifications were as follows:
1. Appearing at school that Friday in my pink sweatsuit to realize I was the only kid in class not in some form of costume.
2. The new, new kid had one of the better costumes, immediately bumping him up above me (the old new kid) on the playground social ladder.
3. No costume meant I had to sit out the parade and the chance to win a plastic pumpkin full of candy the size of my head.
4. Not being in the parade meant I would have to stay behind in class while the rest of the kids went out into the courtyard.
5. Being the only person, including the teacher, not in costume meant I couldn't be left alone in the classroom so I was trotted off to the library.
6. The arbitrary group of non-costumed kids from grades 1-4 that awaited me in the library looked like a model UN, made up of ESL kids mostly.
7. We had to play Hungry Hungry Fucking Hippos.
In the years that followed, my parents eventually eased their vice-like grip on Halloween and allowed my sisters and I to trick or treat (but only to 5 places)and wear costumes (but only if they were store-bought) but somehow that first experience always left a sour taste in my mouth- no matter how many Blow Pops I consumed.
And I don't think she's planning to have a good Halloween either.