Today is Halloween(in Singapore) so I thought I would say something.
I don’t celebrate Halloween.
The first time my mother convinced me to bond with her friends’ children by getting me to go trick-or-treating with them was not an enjoyable experience. I felt really awkward asking random people for candy. After all, almost nobody begs for candy of all things at the front door of strangers’ houses on any other day, so I didn’t see why Halloween should be so special. (Does this sound too condescending? I tried to phrase it in a way such that it didn’t but I think I failed.)
When I got home and ate the candy, of which only about a third I wasn’t disgusted enough by to eat, I realised that all of the candy I had collected could have been bought from a convenience store downstairs, without any of the fuss of meeting up at a certain place with other people and picking out a good costume which actually looked terrible and made it difficult to breathe. If I were my parents, I’d much rather buy me some candy.
Of course, anybody else is still perfectly welcome to participate in these festivities for whatever reason, be it following tradition, bonding friends or getting enough free candy to compensate for the amount of money spent on the costume. During Halloween I just like to stay at home, maybe change the background of my blog to black, and search the internet for interesting tidbits of information about Halloween.
Such as this! According to Wikipedia(which isn’t really much less credible than other websites) is supposed to be the start of a triduum(three day celebration?) called Allhallowtide, and Halloween is merely a contraction of All Hallow’s Evening. Which is probably why the festivities take place in the evening.
Halloween is apparently meant to use “humor and ridicule to confront the power of death“. It makes sense, although you’re not so much confronting death than trying to pretend that you don’t care about it whereas if you were actually about to die right now, you probably wouldn’t be dressing up as a ghost or a mummy and asking someone for candy. Or maybe some people would! I don’t really know.
One problem with Halloween is that sometimes people aren’t sure whether something is a prank or not. Two days ago, in Long Island in the U.S., Patricia Ward was beheaded by her son, her headless corpse being dragged into the middle of the street. The body left a trail of blood coming from Patricia’s house. Passers-by thought it was a Halloween prank, albeit a very macabre and realistic one. After trying to lift the body they realised that it was a real dead body. Her son was seen to have kicked his mother’s detached head across the street before committing suicide by jumping in front of a train.