Monday, October 26, 2015

Halloween is Upon Us

As we get ready to celebrate Halloween for another year, I ask myself some questions.  What's popular in costumes?  Where did the holiday come from?  Where do they celebrate this holiday?  There are a lot of things that most people don't know about Halloween and there are a lot of things that are so trendy that they get on our nerves.  What can one say about Halloween?

Halloween is believed to have originated with the Celts of Ireland and was originally called Samhain.  This is the night before the day of the dead which is still celebrated in many Catholic countries such as Mexico.  However, over time the holiday has become less about the dead walking the Earth and more about the fantastic costumes, haunted houses, horror movies, parties, parades, and of course the candy.  I suppose it should be considered a bad thing when tradition turns to merchandising, but all in all, I like to have fun.  That has become the biggest part of Halloween and I don't see it as a bad thing.  I have been ambushed by religious folks while taking my son trick or treating, and while I do respect the right to religious freedom, I wish that people would take note of the change in the holiday as well.  I say let's all lighten up and have some fun and call it a holiday.

That being said, what's popular with the costumes this year?

Star Wars is back this year with a new film and a whole boat load of merchandising just in time for Halloween.  Now, here's the thing with that.  We've all been dressing as these characters for years, so maybe it's time to move along just like I think it's time for the movies to do.  Be careful not to fall into this trap.  You might run into a lot of these at parties and out trick or treating.

Superheroes are also wildly popular this year, and maybe even more so to the girls.  The guys have moved on to zombies and Star Wars and the girls are suddenly trending into that superhero category.  Watch out for duplicates.

Homemade is the best people.  If you want to be original, make it yourself.  It's great for a group of family or friends, and it will win some great prizes at parties.  It's also a great way to put down the technology and do something together as a family.

Couples costumes are great, because it's a creative night out.  We adults have given up the trick or treating, but we still love to have fun.  Halloween parties are some of the best parties of the year, so look around and see what looks like fun.  Couples costumes can't miss.  Whether it be Adam and Eve or something Disney, the latest zombie idea, food, or Homer and Marge; it's a lot of fun.

Here's an idea.  Be the bad guy.  We all love pirates, who have become heroes and vampires, which have become sexy and superheroes; but the bad guy is a lot of fun.  The Joker never really goes out of fashion and neither does Freddy Kruger or the Scream Guy.  It's the one time of year that it can be good to be bad so enjoy it.  So pull out that Jack the Ripper costume or dress up as a werewolf and have a ball.

Halloween is about fun and creativity, so have a great time whether it's by you dressing as an animal or dressing your animal as something else.  Pet costumes have become all the rage and dogs and cats are stepping out dressed as all kinds of crazy things.

Do you have a thing about clowns?  A lot of people do, so if you want to scare them, there are a ton of clown options from Harley Quinn to Pennywise and beyond.  Zombies, mummies, vampires, and other ghouls never go out of fashion either.

Let's put it this way, if you're sitting at home handing out candy dress up for it.  If you're taking your kids out dress up for it.  If you have to work that day dress up for it.  Enjoy this return to childhood that you only get to have once a year.

But, where can you go to enjoy this holiday other than America?  That was a question that I'd never asked until this year.  Here's the answer.  There are 14 countries that practice the holiday of Halloween.  Of Course we do in the US and Canada.  Halloween is also celebrated in Ireland where it started, England, Austria, Sweden, Germany, China, Czech Republic, Belgium, France, Hong Kong, Korea, Mexico, Latin America and Spain.  So, if you happen to take off around the holiday and are in one of those countries you're in the right place.

In America Halloween comes right at harvest time which gives us the Jack O Lantern.  This custom has also spread far and wide with festivals and contests surrounding the carving of pumpkins.  If you get a chance, check out one of the contests.  They make some amazing Jack O Lanterns that are more art than pumpkin by the time they are done.

It's not too late.  Many websites have quick delivery and will have your costume of choice to you by the big day.  Also, Spirit Halloween has probably popped up somewhere near you, and they have all kinds of crazy costumes.  It's not too late to make it.  You just have to get on the ball.

So, check your history books, make or buy a fabulous costume, make sure there aren't a million costumes like yours, buy some candy, go out and get some candy, carve a pumpkin, go to a party and have a great time.  Halloween gets a bad rep in the religious community as a heathen or pagan ritual, but we really all just want to dress up funny and eat candy.  Don't take it too seriously, because these days most of the kids have no idea what it used to be about.  Take some time to spend with the family, have a really good time with your partner and enjoy the once a year return to childhood that is Halloween.

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