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Hogarth judge

February 2018



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Hogarth judge

Trick or treat

I suppose the most gratifying thing about this year's crop of trick or treaters was that:

  • The vast majority of them were dressed up as some kind of ghoul, goblin, Grim Reaper, ghost, witch, or other traditional horror figure; and

  • Hardly any in my neighbourhood came dressed as a character from some work of licensed commercial fiction - at least none that I recognized.

There were a couple of kittens and puppies - especially among the very youngest children. I also saw a couple of hoboes, and at least one superhero (Mister Incredible). But the majority were dressed as creepy characters, and few were specific to any work of commerce that I recognize.

This pleases me immensely. I suppose I am a traditionalist at heart. Halloween is after all the last real holiday before New Years' Eve. But I don't want Halloween to be turned into the mess that the Exxmas racket has become.

I put on my now-traditional show for them, lighting the driveway with candles and welcoming the trick or treaters in the garage, while blasting the neighbourhood with J. S. Bach organ music. Been doing this for around fifteen years now. I started it when we had a large dog who would go nuts when the doorbell rang. I now do it just because I've been doing it for so long.


We got very few this year, which is usual for us. The first year we didn't get any, in spite of window stickers, Rocky's assorted decor, and blasting (relatively speaking) a really good cable music station that was doing all really good Halloween stuff. This is a matter of location. We're used to getting fifty or a hundred ghouls, goblins, vampires and the inevitable power ranger. (No Potter. We've never seen one in a Potter outfit.)

A handful of older kids in very proper witch outfits showed up and received the usual chocolate plus Starburst tropicals. We've got tons left over. No old-fashioned candy this year. Our netflick (Curse of the Demon) didn't arrive, so we watched Arsenic and Old Lace again and made evil chocolate pie.
You know, now that you mention it, not a lot of licensed ones here, either. We did have an Incredibles, and a Buzz Lightyear, and we had one girl in a Harry Potter uniform that looked like it was bought, not made... but we didn't have the ghoul/goblin percentages. Most of our costumes were princesses, ninjas and the like. Older kids were goth girls, geishas and soldiers.

Though... come to think of it, there were a lot of Jedi's running around.