The Honking Goose

something to honk about

Halloween is better than Thanksgiving or Christmas

Halloween is the most altruistic holiday on the calendar. Think about it. People buy loads of sugary treats and sometimes even little gifts like mini bubble bottles and stickers. And then they give them away freely to complete strangers. Absolutely any child that comes knocking on their door. People they have never seen before in their lives and may never see again. All for the fun of it.
foam gravestone in my yard

For the record, I’m aware that most of the candy being handed out is laden with refined GMO corn syrup and is absolute crap that should not be fed to children or anyone. I would like that to change. I do my part by handing out stickers and pencils and organic treats.

With that in mind, I’m choosing to focus on what is good and right about this strange celebration of dress up and role play and the cycle of life and death.

I used to believe that Thanksgiving was the most well intentioned holiday. Thanksgiving is a day for celebrating harvest, bounty, food, and gratefulness. But it also reminds us (me, anyway) of a dark past that includes genocide against native people. And as far as holidays go, Christmas has really descended from what must have originally been a spiritually honorific day to one of absolute hedonism.

So, my fresh new perspective on the inherent altruism of Halloween has allowed this day extolling the dead, and death, and all things creepy, to usurp Thanksgiving and Christmas in my mind as the most giving-est holiday of them all. Let’s hear it for Halloween!

Do you love Halloween, too? What do you like to hand out to mini people in disguise who come knocking at your door?

If you are from another culture, what is the most altruistic (generous, giving) holiday on your calendar?

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43 comments on “Halloween is better than Thanksgiving or Christmas

  1. Wendy
    November 24, 2016

    I love Halloween! And I make up treat bags to hand out, with all kinds of goodies, depending on age, crayons, pencils, stickers, play- doh, little games… and a treat. Yep, kids love coming to my house. I had over 3 times as many trick-or-treaters than my next door neighbor. Of course my house and I were decorated too.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Pingback: I know I said Halloween is evil, but I lied, it is a BLESSING | The Honking Goose

  3. Pingback: I know I said Halloween is great, but I lied, it is EVIL | The Honking Goose

  4. simplygiselle
    October 21, 2014

    I am curious as to why you say this is a ‘strange celebration’ . Halloween has always and will always be my favorite holiday. 11 days!

    Like

    • thehonkinggoose
      October 21, 2014

      Strange as in different from the rest. Strange in a good way.

      Like

      • simplygiselle
        October 21, 2014

        Hm. As holiday’s go it seems to me to be the most normal one. No bunny’s delivering eggs, no man in a red suit breaking and entering to drop off a gift, its a holiday where (originally) dressing up to fit in with the rest of the ghosts and spirits who, for one night, rise to be remembered. See? Normal. πŸ™‚

        Like

        • thehonkinggoose
          October 21, 2014

          You know, you are right about that. Thank you for pointing that out. That is another reason why I like Halloween so much. Because I absolutely refuse to tell those ridiculous lies to my children. And that should be normal.

          Liked by 1 person

  5. Kelly Unbuttoned
    October 21, 2014

    I was a practicing Seventh-day Adventist in my first marriage, and up until my son was eight (when I decided to leave both the church and that man), we never celebrated Halloween, as it was offensive as a Christian. My views have changed, of course. I always enjoyed “trick or treating” as a child, and still love to dress up so the kiddies can see that I’m in the spirit of Halloween when they ring my bell. I think I’ll have to do a blog post on my experiences as a Christian celebrating “harvest” instead of Halloween.

    Like

    • thehonkinggoose
      October 21, 2014

      That sounds really interesting. I would like to read about Halloween from that perspective.

      Like

  6. Maria Matthews
    October 21, 2014

    I confess I hand out sugar laden stuff to the mini witches who knock on my door but I do like the idea of handing out coloring pencils etc. But I fear they would be thrown right back at me.

    Like

    • thehonkinggoose
      October 21, 2014

      I have gotten dirty looks from bigger kids. But that is their problem. I know there is no shortage of candy in our neighborhood. It’s probably the sugar that has made them cranky in the first place.

      Like

    • thehonkinggoose
      October 21, 2014

      I’ve also heard happy exclamations of, “I got a pencil!” from kids and that is pretty priceless.

      Like

      • Maria Matthews
        October 21, 2014

        Nice. You have set me a challenge. I will let you know what happens

        Like

  7. Ruth2Day
    October 20, 2014

    I don’t mind it and enjoy seeing hoards of little ones dressed up. I do object to older ones, over about 10 doing it though, and cannot quite understand why teenagers do it

    Like

  8. ginjuh
    October 20, 2014

    A high percentage of my community is immigrant, and I am always so pleased to see how the new-to-the-US families embrace this American tradition in dressing their kids up and taking them trick or treating.

    Like

    • thehonkinggoose
      October 21, 2014

      I’m a big fan of Dia de los Muertos decorations and sugar skulls too. Fun stuff!

      Like

    • vvuureoc
      November 27, 2014

      A friend of mine moved to USA some time ago and had the most unpleasant experience during his first year.
      He had to be away on business during Halloween and returned two days later to find his dogs traumatized and his front yard strewn with trash.Fortunately the security cameras recorded enough footage and he was able to to get police action and recovered his costs with claims against the perpetrators. Unfortunately this has spoiled the day for him permanently and he puts up warning notices every year to ensure he does not have a repeat occurence

      Like

      • thehonkinggoose
        November 27, 2014

        My mom used to make a big deal out of catching all our outdoor cats the day of Halloween to keep them in at night with our dogs. (We had a lot of pets.) I don’t know why anyone would want to terrorize pets on a holiday, but it does happen, more often than it should. 😦

        Like

  9. Bowrag
    October 20, 2014

    I like to scare the kids that come to the door.

    Like

  10. NotAPunkRocker
    October 20, 2014

    I’ll buy and give out whatever candy I dislike. Because I’m cool like that πŸ™‚

    Like

    • thehonkinggoose
      October 20, 2014

      One year my kids came back from trick or treating and then went out again. While they were home, I raided their bags and then gave the candy out to kids that showed up at our door, because we were running out. πŸ™‚ Because I’m cool like that.

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Content Catnip
    October 20, 2014

    Halloween to me signifies Samhuinn which is a pagan festival in the Celtic world. In Scotland they still celebrate it this way, the end of the fruitful harvest season and the beginning of the dark half of the year. People get dressed up and festive and have a fire ritual. I love that all Christian holidays have Pagan origins and that it all harks back to the natural world. It;s my favourite time of the year too. I am dressing up as a unicorn and going to a concert LOL…as you do!

    Like

    • thehonkinggoose
      October 20, 2014

      Thank you for sharing that. I am always interested in the pagan roots of our modern celebrations, too, since I am not a Christian. Last year, our family celebrated Solstice instead of Christmas and now when the topic comes up my children happily announce that we celebrate Solstice, not Christmas. *Fist pump* (My children are flexible and accepting, but my MIL is not, I have a lot of work to do before she will come around to understanding how we choose to honor the holidays.)

      Like

      • Content Catnip
        October 20, 2014

        I totally understand where you’re coming from too. My family aren’t really anything at all, but not aetheist. Yet they follow Christian traditions to the letter with all of the decorations and carols. Would love for it to be more about nature and celebrating nature and changing seasons rather than just about eating your weight in food and buying more crap that nobody really needs. It’s hard to make your family change if that’s the way they do things though. Ritual of any kind is nice though, even if you don’t believe in it in a religious way, the pomp and ceremony of it is fun πŸ™‚

        Like

        • thehonkinggoose
          October 20, 2014

          The gifts at winter holiday really get out of control and sway the mood away from the parts I enjoy more. I have been trying to get our extended families to tone it down, but it is a tough row to hoe. I’ll never give up, though!

          Liked by 1 person

    • pseudonym to go here
      October 20, 2014

      It’s certainly nice that in some small ways we still show our respect for the natural world, even if we don’t always realise we’re doing so. I live in Scotland though and I can’t think of ever seeing any fire rituals. Perhaps you’re thinking of Bonfire/Guy Fawkes Night, which takes place the following week on November 5th.

      Like

      • pseudonym to go here
        October 20, 2014

        I’ve just realised that my previous comment makes it seem like I have a better knowledge of Scotland than you, despite the fact I am relatively young and rarely leave the central belt. Please ignore my attempts at inflating my own ego by trying to correct others.

        Like

        • Content Catnip
          October 20, 2014

          No way! Don’t be silly you are not

          Like

          • pseudonym to go here
            October 20, 2014

            I think I’m just new to this whole Internet thing. I have a tendency to say things then instantly regret them. I’m sure I’ll get better at this and hopefully stop worrying so much. Thank you for the kind words.

            Liked by 1 person

      • Content Catnip
        October 20, 2014

        There is Samhuinn on Calton Hill in Edinburgh every year and also Beltane at announce the coming of Spring. Not sure about anywhere else for pagan festivals as I only lived in Edinburgh. They also have Up Helly Aa in Shetland each year in the Winter, although not sure if that’s simply to do with Vikings and unrelated to Pagan worship.

        Like

  12. Afrolivia
    October 20, 2014

    This is my first year experiencing Halloween in the US. I have to say I am thoroughly enjoying the fun, creepy, sometimes scary and honestly impressive decorations I’ve seen around the neighborhood during my daily runs. It’s obvious that most people put a lot of thought and planning in their decorations. Looking forward to seeing the kids in costumes. I really like the idea of handing out stickers, pencils etc and organic treats instead of the traditional sugar laden candy. I can only imagine what parents have to go through dealing with kids on the post-Halloween sugar high!

    Like

    • thehonkinggoose
      October 20, 2014

      My kids will bring home so much candy from trick-or-treating and I will make sure they don’t eat it all themselves by sneaking into their stash at night and eating some myself.

      Liked by 1 person

      • simplygiselle
        October 21, 2014

        “I will make sure they don’t eat it all themselves by sneaking into their stash at night and eating some myself” – this is known as the parent’s ‘candy tax’ πŸ™‚

        Like

  13. john3corrigan
    October 20, 2014

    I love Halloween too!!

    Like

  14. Yoshiko
    October 20, 2014

    I’m not into Halloween. I would prefer cosplay.

    Like

  15. Feminine and Feline
    October 20, 2014

    I do love Halloween, one of my best friends birthday is on that date. This year for his party we aren’t even dressing up. It’s a Half-Life/Portal theme.

    We just put a bowl of assorted candy out and the little humans feast.

    Like

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This entry was posted on October 20, 2014 by in Culture and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , .
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