In case you're breathing a sigh of relief that, after hours of painstakingly inspecting, and possibly dissecting, your children's Halloween candy, they were not near-victims of some dastardly neighborhood psychopath, I just thought I'd like to share with you the secret fact that No one has ever found an actual razor or pin or anything similar in a piece of Halloween candy from a stranger. Ever.
This is decades-old madness, so people need to relax and be sensible. Teach your kids what skeevy-looking candy is, and that they should set it aside for you to dispose of. If need be, offer a per-piece financial incentive like my mom used to for our Halloween gum haul.* And if you're smart, make sure to identify some of your favorites as the skeeviest of all.
But Dan, you say, you just finally eased our minds by saying the candy was safe! Why not tell the kids to down those skeevy pieces? We know how you hate waste in all its forms.
Well, I didn't say the candy was safe, per se, I just said no strangers are putting razor blades in their candy. For one thing, do you know how expensive that would get? Not to mention ridiculously laborious. And what would come of that anyway, a cut lip? Other than your "husky" son who's half boa constrictor, of course.
One body who's always itching to find the answer to a juicy what-if like this is your friendly neighborhood corporation, passing off production to whatever distant land offers the sweetest deal, then rewarding them by promptly squeezing them incessantly for increased profits until they're forced to stir in some surplus metal filings and actual razor blades to thicken up those goddamn lollipops that have to cost no more than 0.000008 cents each.**
One more thing that bugs me, since I'm already pre-wound for a tirade:
This paragraph (all errors and style choices are theirs...) is from my son's elementary school newsletter a couple weeks before Halloween, and it left my jaw hanging open. I'm not exaggerating-- as you might imagine, I often rant at inanimate objects in the privacy of my own home, but this one left me searching (still) fruitlessly for the right words to express all the feelings it stirs in me:
As your child begins to think about what he/she wants to be for Halloween please be mindful of appropriate costumes for school. [...] Students choosing to wear a costume for the Halloween party and parade should wear costumes that portray positive images. Scary, grotesque or negative costumes are not acceptable and will not be allowed. Please make certain your child's costume does not include:
• Toy weapons or look alike weapons
• Gadgets that show blood, etc.
How it manages to stir that (non-scary) pot of those feelings (non-violently) without anything that could also be viewed as a weapon, I'm not sure...
Why don't we just give up and call it "October Dress-Up Day" with only slutty, cute, or funny costumes allowed, and then let's all give Halloween a proper burial, with the only pictures allowed to remember it by coming from before the past 15 years??! Sounds good to me.
And on that note, I hope you all had a great Halloween! Since Christmas stuff has already been in stores for a month or so now, I think the next holiday must be Valentine's Day. Better get your lollipops while Dollar General still has them in stock!
* Gum was forbidden, so this was like a "Cash for pistols, no questions asked" program.
** And those aren't pills in your Smarties, those are prizes!