Okay, it’s official- I’m totally drinking the fall Kool-Aid. All this fall talk got me thinking about other things I loved as a kid during this time of year, but I will stick to really, really important topics for the purpose of this post: Halloween and the candy situation.
I don’t care who you are or where you grew up; Halloween for kids is a big deal. Candy is an even bigger deal. Aside from all the unhealthy facts and findings the fitness experts of the world want to spoil you with, candy is awesome all the time, but when you are a kid- it’s like currency and happiness combined in one little bright and colorful package. It was a festival of awesomeness for me.
Side note: Halloween was NOT the festival of awesomeness in the third grade. My first pet, Blanche, died while I was trick-or-treating with my friends. (Courtney, if you read this, there is no need to comment on the details of this event) I digress…
Anyway, I remember “beggars night” clear as day. I would dress up as whatever princess, Cabbage Patch Kid, cat, or bunny that I decided upon for the moment. With pillow case in hand, dad on site with his pick-up truck (we would ride from street to street in the bed of it), and strategy for the houses planned out- we were off, a-candy-hunting-we-would-go!
The difference in the aforementioned candy houses are easy to describe:
Type 1: Typical lollipop basket, Whoppers, M&Ms, Tootsie-Rolls, Smartees, Nestle Crunch bars, Starburst and Skittles are your usual give-a-ways. We appreciate you because you add to the collection, but you are not my favorite house.
Type 2: The jerks or the house that usually gets the “seriously? come on!” response. You know what’s there: raisins, Good-N-Plenty, apples, popcorn balls, mini toothbrushes, and toothpaste, and Raisinettes are in your basket. We typically are warned of your presence on the block and avoid you at all costs. Then, through a strong use of WOM we carry-on the message. You do not deserve to have your light on. Traitors.
Type 3: The trusting house. Sure…leave your basket of goodies on the porch with a note that says “please take only one.” We’ll listen. Actually, this one is funny. A colleague of mine was speaking how his father was so patient, that he would dress up as a scarecrow and actually sit on the porch with said sign, holding the bowl of candy. As the kids would dare take more than one, he would warn them of the rules, thus scaring the shit out of the dishonest child. Cruel, but funny as hell.
Type 4: The COOL house. You have Reese’s, Twix, Milk Duds, and Snickers. We love you.
Type 5: The rich house. You have full size candy bars. Can we live with you year round?
*NEW* updated 10/14 Type 6: The haunted yard! I can’t believe I forgot about this little gem of a family. I KNOW you remember this house. This family went above and beyond the call of duty by creating an experience before you receive your treats! Fake grave stones, skeletons, creepy themed music, spider webs, etc. As a kid this house scares the ever loving shit out of you, but as you grow, you see that it’s not so bad. What is bad at every age? The person who jumps out and yells “BOO!” before you get to the house. This house better always have Reese’s.
Am I missing any?
When I would get home with my friends, we would sit in my basement (it was the TV room), turn on whatever scary movie (I don’t know why Elvira is popping into my head, but she is) was on TV and then go for it.
Business time: Candy was now emptied on the ground for organization, inventory and trade. I took this VERY seriously. Reese’s and Snickers obviously got the most stock value, along with the full size (that usually were not in the pot for trade, as that was like gold), then down from there- the items from the bad house (if I partook) were usually tossed aside and then eventually thrown away, if not pawned off on my father. I remember my parents would pretend they were looking for razor blades or poison, which usually just meant they wanted some and, as a parental rule, didn’t have to ask first.
Last year was the first time I lived in a neighborhood (vs. a city) and was able to pass out candy. I was so excited, but honestly, kinda nervous. Would I do it right? Thankfully, Brad guided me through this process, and it went off brilliantly. What would I do without him? Actually, let’s be honest, being a skilled ex-trick-or-treater, I probably would have handled it just fine, but it was more fun with him. Then again, what isn’t? 🙂