As you can probably guess by the title of this post, I have a love-hate relationship with Halloween. I feel indifferent towards it. I guess to fully understand my weirdness with Halloween, we’d probably have to start at the beginning. My first real memory of Halloween was in the first grade when my class dressed up. I remember dressing up as Snow White. But I wasn’t Snow White in a creative way; it was one of those store-bought costumes with the plastic, terrible mask. I mean, it was pretty lame.
Moving forward, my parents lived pretty deep in the suburbs so trick-or-treating wasn’t really an option in our neighborhood. Usually during Halloween, our church would host “Hallelujah Night”. This is where we would dress up, go to church and get candy without having to go trick-or-treating. Keep in mind, I grew up in the 80’s and 90’s when it was dangerous to go door-to-door asking for candy. This was during a time when candy *could* be filled with razor blades and other dangerous items. I guess this was the start of my love-hate relationship with Halloween.
Knowing that some of my friends were going trick-or-treating while I was sitting in the church’s sanctuary, bored made me have major FOMO before FOMO even existed (FOMO stands for: fear of missing out). Anyway, so far, my experience with Halloween wasn’t impressive.
Then came college.
I’m living on my own and left to my own devices. All throughout college, there are major Halloween parties to attend. From fraternity and sorority parties, college was definitely the scene to attempt to get in to Halloween. So, here I am, a college student. Surely, I’ll love Halloween now, right? I made some attempts at costumes. Some were fun, others I don’t really remember. Not because I was drinking but probably because, it was a terrible time. The ultimate love-hate relationship with Halloween came when a group of friends and I were going to a Halloween party. I went to college in the Washington, D.C. area so that’s where most of these Halloween attempts took place. Anyway, we parked the car and proceeded to walk towards the club when someone stopped to ask us if we were ‘working’ or if we were going to a Halloween party.
Also, they didn’t use the word working. I’ve simply edited what was actually said for the sake of this post (think of a word that has a double meaning as a garden tool). I have to say, we were in an area of town that was known for night workers so I can see how one may feel as though we were creeping on their territory except for the fact that WE WEREN’T.
My continued love-hate relationship with Halloween
I wish I could say Halloween has gotten better but spoiler alert: it hasn’t. In theory, I believe I’m a pretty creative person but when it comes to figuring out costumes and stuff, that’s just not me. I like the idea of couples costumes but when it boils down to it, I just don’t have the time (or patience) to deal with all of that. Now, I typically resort to dressing in all black and wearing cat ears, which is my lazy attempt at Halloween. The love part of my feelings towards Halloween comes into play when I see other folks’ attempt at being creative. Some of the costumes I’ve seen over the years have been really impressive. I have some friends who really love Halloween and go all out – more power to ya.
That’s not me. Probably will never be me. Not sure if it’s my childhood and the whole Snow White debacle or if it’s because Halloween has become (probably always has been) an outlet for some people to display bad behavior under the guise of a costume.
I like the theoretical idea of Halloween, right? The idea that it’s a whole day/night where everyone goes to a costume party. Cute in theory. But what really happens when I decide to get into it is that inevitably I’ll go to a party and see someone in blackface because “yay it’s Halloween!”. And before you roll your eyes, I’m not being presumptuous.
This happened. In 2017. Just a few days ago.
The sad part? I’m not shocked or surprised. Here’s an article from The Root explaining why blackface is still a thing. So there you *sort* of have it. My love-hate relationship with Halloween stems from many things: lack of costume creativity, not trick-or-treating when I was little and the always tone-deaf/racist costume.
I can’t wait until Halloween is over so people can stop hiding behind their offensive masks and show their plain ol’ faces. So maybe, I actually have a hate relationship with Halloween.