Halloween, that is. I know it’s an American tradition, but it’s never been an Aussie one, and it’s really only been in the last few years that the whole idea has grabbed a foothold here. Why, I have no idea, because–as I said in my intro–I just don’t get it. Oh, I know the history behind the celebration and such–I wrote about it in one of my books–what I don’t get is its relevance in today’s society. Or rather, I don’t get the relevance of the way it’s celebrated in today’s society. I mean, think about it. For three hundred and sixty four days of the year, we tell our kids not to talk to strangers, not to take candy from strangers, blah, blah, blah, but on Halloween it’s suddenly okay for them to beg for candy off strangers? Am I the only one that sees the wrongness in that?
And yeah, in America it may not just be about the candy, but here in Australia, that’s all the kids care about. Bugger the pumpkins, bonfires (which we’re not allowed to light anyway) and the costumes, just give them the candy. We had several lots of kids knocking on our door last night (I’d actually forgotten it was Halloween until then) asking for candy, and there wasn’t a parent in sight. Now, some of these kids were barely in their teens, and I’d certainly never seen them before. Yet there they were, knocking on the door of a stranger, asking for candy. Sorry, maybe I’m an overprotective parent, but there’s no way on this earth I’d be letting my kid do that in this day and age. I never let Kasey do it when she was younger, and we knew just about everyone who was living in our street at the time.
Now, if Halloween was more like Christmas or Easter–a time for families getting together and having fun–that I could handle. It’s just this whole walking the streets taking candy from strangers that creeps me out.