Wednesday, October 31, 2007

It's Halloween

This picture was snagged from the Internet. I like it because it reminds me of what my parents were always trying to avoid in their dance around Halloween.

Today is Halloween and it's not getting much play here, as far as I can see. I used to really enjoy it in NYC. There were parties to go to, mostly square dance related, and I enjoyed dressing up. It was especially fun for a few years when some sort of drag-related idea was fun to play with. I wish I had those pictures scanned in, they were fun.

For instance, one year I went as a dead beauty queen - an idea borrowed from some activist friends a few years earlier. And one year I went as a slutty Italian girl - inspired by a pretty incredible red sequined dress that I bought on the street for ten dollars. Since I moved here, I don't do Halloween. Fred doesn't like imported American holidays. (I guess he enjoys his imported American too much.) For instance, Valentine's Day is not something he pays attention to, except to look at his hands where I have placed a gift - because I like Valentine's Day. (We have a trade off with a Dutch holiday I like to ignore, but he celebrates.)

I spoke with my friend, Cindy, who explained how Halloween is "done" in our neighborhood. There is a woman who organizes everything months in advance. People sign up to give out candy and the parents of the children get a list of all of the houses and apartments that give out candy. So we never get bothered. Apparently there are whole streets where kids go to almost every house. Again, not ours. There is probably some sort of screening process as well, so anyone giving out screwed up candy is eliminated. (But I heard that all that "razor blade in the apple" stuff was made up.)

When I was growing up, my parents let us trick-or-treat for a while, although there was a "no scary costumes" rule. Then there was a complete boycott of Halloween because it was "the Devil's birthday" (my response: Mary, please!) Then they began having "Harvest celebrations" (in the suburbs!) because God forbid those Baptist children be deprived of all that candy that the secular children were getting. (Side note: It always creeped me out, even as a child, to see an 18 year old standing there with a bag open. Solution: Get a job. Buy some candy.)

Last night I was supposed to do coffee and cookies for the break during choir rehearsal. Sally and I had signed up as a pair, as we did twice a year - near our birthdays and the Tuesday before Halloween. So I got there and there was a woman setting up. She said, "My birthday is this week, so I thought I'd do the coffee." (Strange birthday thing here in Holland.) Forget that I bought cookies or that I was signed up, albeit with someone who wouldn't be there. She went ahead and did it. And I talked to people about Sally and how much we miss her.

Thanks, by the way, for all the nice condolence messages. It's nice to feel a little connection in this strange time.

Tomorrow begins my month of daily posts. Get ready. Not quite sure what'll happen. But I've got some ideas.

1 comment:

Marion said...

I'm going to dress up and spend my evening at Mulligans Irish Pub tonight :)
I will tell you all about it when we meet next monday evening ok? ;D