What’s not to love about Halloween?
You get to dress up and transform yourself into your favorite superhero, fairy tale, movie or spooky character, and be whoever and whatever you want!
People give you candy and treats just for showing up at their house, or doing a drive thru at a designated trunk or treat area.
Farms extend their money-making seasons by doing hayrides, often through scary mazes and spooky scenarios where ghosts, goblins, ghouls, and unsavory characters jump out of the darkness to give you a few seconds of fright and horror.
This year we’ll spend more than $10 billion for Halloween treats and entertainment … up from $6.9 billion just 10 years ago. All for a bit of fun!
Even the anticipation and preparation for Halloween is fun.
It’s the only holiday pretty much devoted to just having a good time! No one has to juggle their work schedules or plan airline or car trips. No one has to host visiting relatives and prepare food for major meals and feasts.
I think we need more Halloweens!
Halloween has changed since I was a kid. I grew up in a small town where we didn’t have a designated trick or treat night. It lasted for several nights. And we didn’t just ring door bells, get our candy, and leave.
We were invited in. We sat down in living rooms and before we got our treats, we were asked questions we had to answer so people could guess who we were underneath the masks and costumes. You could do that then, in a small town where everybody knew who you were.
There is a lot that was good about living in a small town 60 years ago. Before big box stores and malls, you could get everything you wanted at local shops owned by the people who lived in your town or a nearby town. You walked or biked there. My Dad rode his bicycle to the post office each day, even when he was in his 80’s. We weren’t as dependent on cars.
You went into a store and they knew who you were and greeted you by name. As a kid, my parents could send me to the store to get something without worrying if something bad would happen to me.
Main Street back then was the hub of life in the town; which is something the Main Street programs of today are trying to revitalize in small towns and the downtowns of small cities.
Back then “home delivery” meant the milk man who came every other day leaving fresh bottled milk and picking up the empty bottles, the bread and bakery truck and butcher’s truck that both stopped twice a week, and the ice cream truck that came once a week.
Today “home delivery” is Amazon, FedEx, and UPS. The selection of goods and foods we can get sitting at home at our computers is nearly infinite. As I write this I’m waiting for a package that shipped from Malaysia last week … a Christmas gift for one of my grandchildren. I’ve tracked it to China, then San Francisco, to Illinois, and now its in Ohio. Should be here soon.
My FedEx and UPS drivers are really friendly; but I don’t know their names, or where they live. We don’t take time to chat because they are on a schedule with loads of packages to deliver and they want just want to get the job done.
I do most of my shopping without ever having a conversation with anyone. Even at my local stores, if I exchange pleasantries with clerks and staff, I have no idea who they are. If I’m not buying much I use the self check-out and talk to no one.
I think that’s why I am so grateful for a fun holiday like Halloween. When kids and adults both are costumed, you aren’t supposed to know who they are; only who they are pretending to be. You share the fun and the holiday with strangers as well as with friends.
And in today’s world, how nice it is that at any age we can become whatever and whoever we want, all for the purpose of having fun with our neighbors and most important of all, with people we don’t even know. We should do more of that.
Halloween is not only about putting on a costume, it’s about finding the imagination within ourselves.Elvis Duran
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