Thursday, October 30, 2008
Granted, no one can agree on what Halloween is really about anymore, or where it all began, or who started it. You can read a lot of authoritative sounding info out there. They all claim they hold the absolute truth about Halloween, but they are all equally as wrong and useless as the next.
The way I see it, it is essentially a HARVEST festival.
In Australia, October is SPRING.
So, whats it doing here?
But here it is. Along with so many other "American" money making machines (McDonalds, Big W, the ilk). I admitt, I was dissappointed to discover that the suburbs of Sydney are very much like the suburbs of Anywhere, USA.
I once asked a woman here in Sydney why she let her kids go trick or treating. She replied "Oh, you know, they see it on TV..."
Really? They see it on TV. Thats an interesting parenting technique.
I had to bite my lip really, really hard to avoid asking her the inevitable:
What else do they see on TV that you allow them to do?
Murder? Gang Rape? Base jumping? Soft-core p*rn?
Do you know youre a moron?
Obviously what they dont see on TV is the line up outside the local police station to get the goodies xrayed for sharp metal objects. Nor the school lectures on how to tell if your candy has been tampered with. They call it something like 'safety', but they should just get real and name it "How not to get maimed or killed by eating candy from strangers 101".
When it got this bad stateside, most sensible people stopped going to houses they didnt know who lived in. Parents or older siblings would chaperone younger ones from Aunties house across town to Grandmas and back again for a party at the community centre. (Where you likely still dont know anyone.)
All that sort of thing helps the young ones, thats true. But for other adults, it means a knock at the door you arent expecting, is likely to be trouble. Especially as evening becomes night.
Thats when you get the gangs of teenagers. Gangs of teenage boys who dont even bother with the pretense of a costume. You just know youd better give them some candy - alot of it - without saying a word.
Or else. Thats all. Or else.