HBG: Halloween Blog Carnival: 10 Best Things About Halloween

Posted: October 20, 2014 in Halloween, horror

Jack o’ lanterns from pumpkins and furry black kittens, these are a few of my favorite things…

Ever since I was a child, Halloween has been favorite holiday, even in preference to the more present-laden Christmas or my own self-serving birthday. It was, and continues to be, all about Halloween.

So in the spirit of the season and my beloved holiday, I give you the 10 best things about Halloween (for me at least):

10. Candy: At heart, I am just a little fat girl. I loved candy as a child, and I love candy still as an adult. Granted, candy is accessible year round, and with the internet, seasonal candy is as well. However, there’s just something special about when pumpkin and ghost shaped candy in black wrappers starts to grace the grocery aisle. And can we say mellowcreme pumpkins and candy corn? There is also something enchanting about a heaping pile of variously concocted sugars (even if it now comes home in my kid’s bucket).


9. Haunted houses: Fear (#1) is fun, when that fear is contrived and controlled. A haunted house is nothing if not a place designed to scare you safely. That is why we go, after all. I have been to many haunted houses in my Halloweens, some awesome and some painfully lame. One in a cave, one in a mine, some in a house or building, one in a corn field. I was in a photo shoot in the House of Shock. I even helped construct a haunted house for children during community service. Snaking through a long line in the dark, being teased by cast members, just to willingly plunge into darkness to be terrified is its own small thrill.


8. Weather: The crisp edge on the air. The lovely death hues adoring the leaves before they pile on the ground. The crunch of the leaf corpses under my feet. Aside from the snow of winter, fall is my favorite season. It is the best time to run (a deep, pervasive addiction of mine); the temperatures are mild and pleasant; the colors are beautiful. Once those first leaves begin to turn and fall, I know my beloved Halloween is near. And Halloween would not be what it was if it did not happen during the fall.


7. Trick-or-treating: See #10 Candy above. Add to this love of candy the fun of costumes (#3) and the excitement of going door-to-door in the dark. If you are fortune and your neighbors are festive, your neighborhood can be transformed, in that one night, into an alternative and spooky world. I remember my father used to don a ferocious mask and terrify all our friends and classmates as he doled out candy. And when I briefly lived in the South, one house was so inspired as to have a full-sized skeleton funeral procession poised in their front yard.


6. Parties: I may or may not have been an avid (read: rabid) drinker in my misspent youth. I may or may not have frequented many a party in my day. Whatever my past, a house party still has a special place in my heart. Especially when it is my party where I can simply stumble up the stairs and pass out face down in my Dora the Explorer costume (shoes included). When these parties are made even better with music and costumes (#3) and the macabre (#2), I am one happy and intoxicated girl. Every year, we go all out with festive food and drink and costumed friends.


5. Movies: Horror movies, need I say more? Horror movies that include or are focused around Halloween, even better. Trick ‘r Treat is our staple Halloween movie. Since having our daughter, every year after we return from trick-or-treating (#7), we put her to bed in her post-sugar comma and watch Trick ‘r Treat over drinks and more candy (#10). Not to mention other necessary classics like the Halloween franchise, just to name one.


4. Pumpkins: Delicious, delicious pumpkins. When October graces our calendar, pumpkin reigns in our house. Pumpkin cookies, pumpkin bread, pumpkin fondue, pumpkin pancakes. The list goes on. We also harvest the pumpkin for the pie for the next holiday. Pumpkins also make jack-o-lanterns. As a child, I hated gutting a pumpkin; I found the gooey, sticky innards horrifying. Yet I loved carving just the same. One year, our parents helped us construct a jack-o-lantern totem pole in a planter on our front step. Now, I watch my daughter squeal as she shoves her hand inside a pumpkin as we carve for our porch. Plus, pumpkins are orange like my hair. They are simply a symbol of both the holiday and the season.


3. Costumes: Costumes allow you to temporarily be someone else. When I was a child, I played dress up incessantly, mostly using Halloween costumes from years past. I was a mermaid then a princess then a ladybug, all in the same day. But Halloween costumes were special. I spent the entire year deciding what single thing to be on that special night. As an adult, Halloween costumes have become about creativity and hilarity (with a stop off at slutty between childhood and parenthood). This year, for example, with my newborn son, I represented my challenging pregnancy and birth by dressing us up as Alien with me being the chest out of which he is bursting.


2. Macabre: Even prior to my fall from innocence, even before my gothic phase, I loved the darkness in Halloween. I used to write illustrated stories about haunted houses. I used to plaster things with ghost and witch and black cat stickers. Year round, I love skulls and skeletons. When I was a gothic belly dancer, I was frequently covered in fake blood. Halloween is defined by the macabre. Sure, it is often all cuted up and toned down for the kiddies, but at its core, Halloween (not Samhain) is defined by darkness and the macabre. I love having a small graveyard in my front yard and a skeleton dangling from my door. It is the one time of year where my aesthetic preference is acceptable and embraced.


1. Fear: Halloween is about being scared and things that are scary. Boo! Being scared in a safe and controlled scenario is fun and exciting. I startle embarrassingly easily, even considering my horror obsession and copious amounts of time spent desensitizing myself, and I love that thrill of the jolt in my adrenaline, that rush of relief when the fear passes. I am an addict for that sensation, and it is so much more fun when everyone else is playing along. Haunted houses (#9), trick-or-treating (#7) in the dark, terrifying decorations, foggy and eerie weather (#8). All things that allow us to flirt with and dabble in fear while knowing we will be able to emerge smiling on the other side.


What are you favorite things about Halloween?


Visit the rest of the Halloween blog carnival!

Poetic Zombie



Interrogating Ideology With A Chainsaw



I Want to Suck Your Blog



I Want to Suck Your Blog






Poetic Zombie



The Nightmare Nook Horror Blog



I Want to Suck Your Blog


  1. sudynim says:

    You’ve made the best points! To add and what I also love is that unlike some other holidays, where the focus is on private celebrations with family/friends, Halloween is a community event, meant to be celebrated in public, where you’re meant to be seen and where neighbors give small tokens of gifts(candy) to kids.

    That and also seeing the “sexy” version of every Halloween costume.


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