Halloween was favorite holiday for many, many years. It was the one holiday devoted to mischef and chaos. A time when the boring, gray interactions of daily life were eschewed for something vaguely akin to that old Star Trek episode in which the disciplined citizens of an alien town ran amok shouting “Festival! Festival!” I liked the costumes. I liked the pumkins. I liked the candy. I even like the television programming.
Periodic rumors of devil worshippers and the razor-hiding apples only made the night more bizaare and attractive.

In the Lew Black concert that I recently attended, the infamously irrated comic dispaged the traditions of this holiday. He noted that those who carve more than one pumpkin have clearly failed to notice the ungodly stench of the squash. He spewed some bile over adults who dress up on Halloween, noting that it’s a kid’s holiday. While Black’s positions were exaggerated for comedy, I find that I’m in harmony with his sentiments.

My spooky-time traditions have dwindled to reading a few H. P. Lovecraft stories and a bit of E. A. Poe. If I think of it, I watch /Evil Dead II/ or an old Vinny Price flick from the sixties.

Halloween has lost its magical sheen over the years. I don’t go to many Halloween parties and I don’t really want to disguise myself as a pirate, a clown or Wookie. Even the much-beloved town of Salem can’t rekindle this old flame. Halloween has become just another hook to yank money of our wallets. It short, it seems that Halloween has become respectable and in so doing as lots much of what made the day fun. And that is the scariest trick of them all.

[Original use.perl.org post and comments.]