Living in Texas, as I do, this is one of those holidays that for me has been almost ruined by the Christianists. At some point, while my girls were in elementary school, we went from having a Halloween carnival to a Fall Festival. We went from decorating doors with ghosts and witches to being restricted to pumpkins and fall leaves. Even though the kids were allowed to wear their costumes to the festival it was explicitly NOT about Halloween. All in the name of political correctness.
Someone, and it was probably just one person, complained and ruined it for everyone else. The Fall Festival at church was the same way. We musn't include the witches and monsters. Someone might think we were
worshiping the Devil.
What a complete crock of poo.
There is some basic need in human nature to spin tales and try to freak each other out. You can see it on every elementary school playground as little boys try to find ways to gross each other out, or better yet gross out the little girls. It's multi-billion dollar a year business - from horror movies to roller coasters and video games - we get a thrill out of being scared. I'd dare to say that we're hard wired to do so.
And it has nothing to do with worshipping evil.
Whatever the origins of Halloween, in our modern world it's a chance to be someone else, to use your creativity and get a little scare on. If you're anything like me, you can pull together about half a dozen costumes out the detritus that fills your closets. There might even be a few unfinished costume projects hiding in there, too. I once purchased material and pattern to turn my kids into Power Rangers. I think I still have the material in my closet virtually untouched a decade later. (Though I did use some for triangular bandages for the first aid kit. The yellow, of course. Anyone who gets one of my slings is going to be the hit of fashion.)
So, what are you going to be for Halloween this year? Me? I'm leaning towards overweight, middle-aged mom. At least the costume will be easy.