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HALLOWEEN! HELP!

So it is October 31st,early evening and I am sitting in bed lights off, TV on low, along with most of the people on my street,  trying to avoid feral gangs of youths roaming around, 
On any other night, if somebody knocked on your door and demanded sweets or they would do something nasty, like throw eggs at your door or bend your car ariel  you would call the police.  Demanding money with menaces it would be called and is a criminal offence. Not to mention criminal damage.   But because it is Halloween, somehow this is legal!
When I was a child, we had bonfire night.  November 5th.  With fireworks and a bonfire that you could burn all your rubbish,  We had treacle toffee, potatoe pie and black peas and a nice party.  Ok maybe it is not quite PC to celebrate a the foiling of an anti Catholic,  terrorist attempt,  to blow up Parliament and kill the king in 1605,  and maybe children  sitting in the street, with a stuffed effigy of Guy Fawkes,( which we later burned) begging “penny for the  Guy” is also not quite acceptable today, but surely it was better than terrorising old people?…..and we learned alot of history at school because of it.  “Halloween” was a pagan festival to celebrate witchcraft, when people just told scary stories..
  Somewhere along the line we imported this  festival, I am not sure of the historical significance  The shops are full of dress up outfits and scary masks, so somebody is making a lot of money……..and I cannot understand the mentality of any parent that encourages this sort of thing.

Bah humbug!

Love Denise.

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7 thoughts on “HALLOWEEN! HELP!

  1. I know a lot of people don't like halloween and I've always thought of it as an American import. However David tells me that in Northern Ireland as a boy Halloween was always celebrated with dressing up having parties with apple bobbing and fireworks, but it didn't involve the doorknocking and "trick or treating" we get here. I believe it was celebrated in Scotland as well where children go "guising" – performing a song or similar to earn a treat.We are lucky where we live in our little part of Manchester, we mainly get small children in fancy dress usually accompanied by a parent or older siblings, and me and my neighbours hand out sweets to them. Last night we just had one small bedraggled "witch" because of the bad weather.

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  2. We didn't celebrate Halloween as a kid either, but my dad always talks of carving turnip lanterns for the occasion, and he grew up just up the road from you. I must admit, I think it's quite fun for me to do as an adult, but I wouldn't like to see the trick or treating thing catching on at home either. That's a bit grinchy I'm sure!We celebrated Guy Fawkes, but I think in NZ it was a bit calmer than when my mum was growing up in Liverpool in the 50s, where apparently it wasn't too uncommon for fights between Catholic and Protestant kids to break out…

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  3. Hi Janet and Gwan.I remember apple bobbing now you mention it, Janet, nobody seems to do that now. I had never heard of pumpkin ( or turnip)carving either till this year, but it sounds fun and creative…. Turnip carving is Scottish it would seem, so that explains how it filtered down to you fathers neck of the wood in Carnforth.As I am prone to do, I did a bit of research and was amazed to find that bonfire night,for a while in the 19th century, was seen as focus for anti catholic feelings and there was violence with the protestants. I don't know if that stuff was continued in Liverpool in the 20th century as there was a large Catholic population in Liverpool.Trick or treating started in the US in the 1950's apparently, maybe it evolved from the Scottish traditions.Anyway, we survived the night without anything nasty being thrown at our door. The weather was horrible so maybe that scared them away.Love Denise

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  4. As an American who grew up loving Halloween, I have to say that you grinches (what would be the equivalent for anti-Halloweeners?) obviously don't know what you missed. There's nothing like roaming the neighborhood with a big pillowcase demanding candy. The power of childhood! The scariness of going around at night without your parents! The joy of bringing home the booty! Ahh…good days and even better memories.We experienced many a Guy Fawkes celebrations when our children attended a British School in Switzerland and burning an effigy of GF seemed really twisted, as did the saying about sending his body parts to the far corners of the kingdom. Give me Jack O'Lanterns, witches and vampires any day! The best part was when they served mince pies and mulled wine after the bonfire.

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  5. Ok, OK, I give in. Maybe there may be some enjoyment in Halloween. British children also have the pleasure of Bonfire night too so, two9 fro one. ( as somebody said in the radio today) this has become the "season" of witches, bonfires and fireworks and as I sit and listen to what sounds like world war three outside tonight and watch a wonderful spectacle from my bedroom window I can see there may be some entertainment in it all.Mince pies and mulled wine!!! they got it wrong. That is Christmas, Parkin treacle toffee, potato pie and black peas all washed down with cider is what they should have been serving!

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  6. Mince pies and mulled wine is definitely wrong! We had potatoes baked in the bonfire, parkin and treacle toffee washed down with cocoa for the children or beer for the adults.I'm happy for the children to dress up and come knocking for sweets and chocolate and some of them obviously make a real effort with their costumes. What bothers me is the people who tell of older kids demanding money and throwing eggs and worse at their doors and windows if they don't comply.I also enjoy a good firework display but the senseless setting off of loud fireworks in the street and on the field behind my house at 1 or 2 o'clock in the morning is not good. And where do they get the money, these fireworks aren't exactly cheap!Rant over, happy halloween and guy fawkes to everyone, roll on Christmas!

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  7. We have not had a lot of fireworks this year, until the actual November 5th. Usually we can hear them from the beginning of October. No egges this year either.Maybe the "feral youths" are growing up!

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