Friday, October 26, 2007

Holidays that disappoint

Doesn't it seem that so many holidays disappoint. Christmas always leaves with a let-down. Birthdays are, all of a sudden, something to dread rather than something to look forward to (I had a fellow student in my fencing class ask me, the other day, why I was still alive as old as I am. I'm not THAT old.) Fourth of July's fireworks never seem quite as beautiful as they ones from when we were kids (although I'm sure they really are). But Halloween is always there and it's one holiday where you can make it exactly what you want.

I live in a diverse neighborhood just a couple of miles from downtown Dallas. For us, Halloween means kids in costumes. Some of the costumes are pretty bad, some are wonderful. Some of the kids are taller than me, but some are so small their parents have to carry them from house to house. For some, 'trick or treat' is about the extent of their English. But all of them bring smiles and a sense of togetherness.

In my books, magic is real but often dangerous. My 'return of magic plague' universe, for example, has the return of vampires, werewolves, trolls and others accompanied by a ramp-up in prejudice and discrimination. But the magic of Halloween is a happier, lighter magic. It's the magic of dressup, of play, and most of all, of smiling children.

I hope it's a happy day for all of you.

Rob Preece

The magic of Halloween

I know many don't celebrate Halloween for one reason or the other.

I love Halloween, not for what it symbolizes but for the simple reason it is the one day of the year where I can be a kid once again...dress up and become a zombie, decorate my home along with my children and have fun...see the kids faces when I drop those goodie bags in their Halloween sack.

I spend about two hours, spraying and teasing my long hair to stand upright...about three cans of spray later my hair is as stiff as can be. And yes, when it's time to wash that sucker I do regret it. But I wouldn't do anything different because I am having such a blast and this is what Halloween means to me.


There is a scarier side to Halloween with all the nutcases out there and I make sure to visit the homes of neighbours I've known for a long time. Many of my friends host Halloween parties to make sure the kids have fun in a safe environment. There are communities now who have their own 'block parties' and invite the children and parents to visit and join in the fun.

What about your side of the world? How does your neck of the world celebrate Halloween?

Lea Schizas
PS Our upcoming monthly discussions are:

November: NaNoWriMo

DECEMBER: Time for those New Year’s Resolutions –

JANUARY: Sidewalk Sales: are you a habitual ‘sales’ buyer?