This weekend was a culmination of a cultural change that has been a brewing in the great Emu and Roo land for some time. I speak of the movement known as Halloween. As American as hot dogs, baseball and ignorance. Little kids dressing as monsters, freaks, spooks, celebrities and the un-dead...all in the name of tricks and/or treats.
But why? Why celebrate this unholy carnival of satanic fancy dress? What inspires parents and children alike to embrace this quite ridiculous occasion. All the other day’s have a point- Mother’s, Father’s, Valentine’s, Talk like a Pirate etc. Valid celebrations of all they stand for. But Halloween strikes me as day that honours bad fancy dress and chocolate.
When I was a kid, I dressed up whenever I wanted. If I need to get a choc/sweet hit I’d do some chores or steal $2 from my parents wallet and BMX my butt down to the Milk Bar. None of this dressing as a Mighty Morphing Power Ranger to get sweets off some old perv. It seems quite unsafe. I ventured from my home on Sunday eve to see the neighbourhood teaming with kids looking slightly more un-dead and ghoulish than normal. Some were wisely accompanied by parents. Other were not, and I observed more than one dodgy type keenly observing them. Back in my day, we knew where the Kiddy Fiddlers lived and kept well away...no Fun Size bar is that fun!
The money and effort these people put into the costumes is amazing. My wife and I observed what appeared to be a group of Asian teen girls trick or treating without costumes. As I angrily worked into a rant, she pointed out that it could actually be their costumes and that they may actually be a group of 9 year old Greek boys. Adults have also taken to the Halloween dress up craze in Australia, with it a regular fixture on the house party calendar. Girls, as is the case with all dress up parties, take this as an excuse to dress skanky. So whether its zombie (skanky zombie) pirate (skanky pirate) uniform (skanky uniform) or letter (skanky letter...like X) the girls will find a way to bring the sexy back. It was for this reason late Saturday night, that I saw the most attractive Cyclops I have laid eye/s on.
I hope this fad goes the way of other imported, American child fads like Rollerblades, and just disappears. If my kid ever wants lollies or sweets that don’t have to dress up or do tricks, that’s what the dog is for. They just need to ask. Then we will be faced with another American fad- childhood obesity. Perhaps the most ironic costume for next Halloween would be the ghost of Uncle Sam’s obese child, named Cousin Chub he dies of infant diabetes.