04 November 2009

Pretend it's still Halloween with me!

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
• Masks
• 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!


Badass Geek said...

Frustrating. Just like Christmas is destined to be forbidden in schools, and will eventually be called Winter Give Presents Day.

Aunt Juicebox said...

Um, I think they need a little lesson on the actual origins of Halloween, and that costumes were meant to be scary. Duh. Schools will be the ruination of this country.

unmitigated me said...

We used to have kids who came to school in a full, rubber Freddy Kreuger mask and razor-gloves. Makes it hard to concentrate in school. As a school-person, I think it mostly makes sense, as the kids are not there to trick-or-treat. We had kids who would wear one bland costume to school, then a real eye-popper at night.

When I finally thought it was too much? When hobo costumes were banned because they "make fun of homeless people." Jumping Jesus on a pogo stick, enough!

Real estate in Toronto said...

Hi. It's sad that we have to be afraid of our children during Halloween because of psychopaths who put razor blades into candies. But another topic that concerns me about Halloween or trick-or-treating is the health of our children. It's hard to persuade them that they shouldn't eat all candies in the same day. I think that children learn their eating habits just in the age they usually go trick-or-treating and it's bad when they eat several days just Halloween candies. Parents should be watchdogs also in this area.


Midwest Mom said...

I think Mr. Crankypants needs his chocolate fix.


- Julia

Dan said...

You'd be better off just banning costumes completely rather than cripple the fun like that.

Kori said...

I shall be a dissenter here, becuase of all of the costumes we looked through, only three were ones I would allow Owen to wear. Nothing with any kind of a weapon, nothing with blood, nothing with a scary mask. I don't think those are appropriate for any small child, personally. Sam, however, is halfway to eleven years old, and he was a vampire, complete with bloody-looking lips (thank you, Estee Lauder, I knew that hooker-red-lipstick smaple would come in handy someday!) and a fake blood capsule. So for the older kids, sure, what the hell?

Also: since the whole point of Halloween is, of course, the candy, why NOT let the kids be gluttons for a day or two? If they eat a fairly balanced diet the rest fo the time, the candy isn't going to hurt them. In my opinion.

Mary said...

So that was just a fun rumor to get hospitals to x-ray our candy and give the kids starburst that glow in the dark?

BigLittleWolf said...

Skeevy-looking candy. Yep. Out it goes.

By high school, kids are scary looking without costumes.

Leftover chocolate. The worst. (Dentist on call?)

Trooper Thorn said...

If we just move Halloween to August, it will be too hot to wear scary rubber masks. Then gilrs can be fairies and boys baseball players - how wholesome! Problem solved.