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Why I Despise Halloween

Why I Despise Halloween  main image

As a high-strung introvert, the idea of knocking on people’s doors to goad strangers into giving me free candy never particularly appealed to me when I was younger. Even when I did try to join in on the fun, and believe me I tried, I never seemed to get it right anyway.
 
I don’t despise Halloween just because I was the only third-grader in my school to show up without a pumpkin to the annual mandatory giant pumpkin contest. And no, it’s not because it brings back the mortification and self loathing of having overwatered smothered in love my miserable little pumpkin seed into oblivion. And no, I don’t take my seed’s failure to germinate personally.
 
Ok, maybe a bit. But also Halloween is dumb. Before you dismiss my unpopular opinion with a casual “God, Freud would have a field day with you”, please note that Halloween’s a deeply unpleasant experience for many people. It’s not just me.
 
The search “why i hate halloween” generates 31.2 million results on Google, which if you ask me is unsurprising. From kids egging your car to folks dressing up as brutal dictators or Pocahontas, the whole thing’s a bloody nightmare.
 
“Gaddafi” by Paul Stein‎, taken on October‎ ‎31‎, ‎2011 at a Halloween parade in Soho, New York  
 
I’m not one to reject hollow commercial holidays just because they’re big business. After all, I get my boyfriend a box of champagne truffles every year on February 14 because he bloody loves champagne truffles. In fact, as a quick sidebar, I’ve never understood couples who reject Valentine’s Day. They’re the type of people who never take their kids to Disneyland because it’s hollow and artificial, despite how utterly happy and excited it would make their children. While Valentine’s Day and every other commercialized holiday is bae, Halloween is dogshit.
 
Appealing to our basest instincts, Halloween’s basically a celebration of gore and fear and humanity’s lowest common denominators. It’s the season of bad taste, of white people dressed in Navajo costumes or covered in fake blood riding on the subway. It’s full of shockingly offensive things like Knott’s Berry Farm’s mental-ward themed Virtual Reality game, and seems to be a holiday with complete disregard for how uncomfortable people might find it. Imagine having undergone a real-life traumatic experience, only to have flashbacks brought on by a bunch of drunk frat boys covered in fake blood. Call me a snowflake, but I really don’t think trauma victims should have to deal with the psychological fallout of seeing people dressed as corpses walking down the street.
 
Another thing that bugs me is the weird societal assumption that women should want to dress up as sexy versions of non-sexy things, like Ken Bone or pizza rat, to attend whatever college Halloween night they had the misfortune of going to. I get that people need to get laid, but – and I say this without the slightest intention to slut-shame – if you’re going to choose to dress up as a rat dragging a slice of pizza in the NY subway, why not just accept that you won’t be remembered for your fine body?
 
Also, not to mention, Halloween is rude as f***. At the risk of sounding like Ayn Rand (the author of The Fountainhead and cursed mother of libertarianism in America), why can’t kids buy their own candy, rather than bother nice sensible people staying in on a weeknight? And why must trick-or-treaters resort to extortion? Asking anyone for anything without saying “please” is rude enough.
 
Call me boring but this year, I’m staying in on Halloween with the seventh season of The West Wing, and I’m certainly not opening the door to any rude children.
 

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Written by Mathilde Frot
I'm originally French but I grew up in Casablanca, Kuala Lumpur and Geneva. When I'm not writing for QS, you'll usually find me sipping espresso(s) with a good paperback.

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