The non-holiday should be treated more like a real day off if we want to celebrate it like one.
It’s late October and everywhere you turn there’s Halloween. Advertisements on TV, radio and youtube are all capitalizing off of the scariest holiday of the year. Everyone loves Halloween: it’s an excuse to dress up in fun or scary costumes, eat a ton of candy, watch scary movies and go ghost hunting. Except, the older you get and the more you think about it, Halloween sucks.
Now don’t get me wrong, I love Halloween. The horror movies, the fall weather, the excuse to carve a face into a pumpkin — it’s fun. But, it also sucks as a holiday, because it isn’t really a holiday. When Halloween is in the middle of the semester, and even on the rare occasion that it does fall on a weekend, students are so concerned with papers and tests that they can’t take the time to decorate or get a costume.
This year Halloween is on a Thursday. A Thursday? Who permitted this? It’s so close to Friday, so close to being the peak day it can be for Halloween. Is it possible to just push Halloween back a day? Or do what they do for Thanksgiving and Labor Day and put Halloween on the last Friday of October? Or better yet, just declare Halloween and Nov. 1 national holidays so no one has to go to work or school. No one is going to want to be dragging themselves to work or class after being up till 4 a.m. the night before watching scary movies or partying.
Halloween is also expensive as all heck. Decorations add up fast. Yeah, you can buy from the dollar store or the discount section, but if you really want to be living in Halloweentown you have to spend money. I only have one little sticker on my window and even that cost me $5. A skeleton that you can position and have hanging around costs $20, do you know what I can do with $20? I can buy food, or gas or go on a date, or … buy a skeleton that I can put up as decoration one month out of the year.
Costumes also drain the bank account, which is already so low. If you choose to buy your costume from the store expect to throw out some money. Or you could go the DIY route and make your own costume. Making your own leaves you with two options: spend a lot of time and money to create a costume that is actually good and impressive, or end up with something that people might be able to recognize if they squint and tilt their head.
There are a few cheap, fun and low effort alternatives to costumes, though, if you want to go that route. Personal favorites of mine are Nickelback, where you tape nickels onto the back of a t-shirt, ceiling fan, grabbing a pom-pom and writing “go ceiling” on a t-shirt, and tourist, where you wear a Hawaiian shirt, grab a straw hat, pick up a camera and take pictures of everything you see that night. These low effort costumes might get you judgemental looks from some of those Halloween pros that treat this one night a year like a life or death situation, but when you’re too worried about your GPA to make a perfect replica of Iron Man, it’s a loss you’re going to have to deal with.
Halloween, as an adult, is also lacking events to go to. Sure, you can hit up a Halloween party thrown by a local fraternity, but does anyone really want to go to that? Or you can gather some friends and have a scary movie marathon, which sounds fun until you’re two movies in and bored out of your mind. There is the option of throwing your own Halloween party, but then you have to plan it, and buy supplies, and actually have friends to invite over to make it a good party. You could also just go home for the night and help your parents pass out Halloween candy to small children that come to your house dressed as Fortnite characters … riveting stuff.
I don’t hate Halloween, quite the opposite. It’s my favorite holiday. The creepy aesthetic, the bad movies, the fall weather, it’s all so good. But Halloween also has its flaws. As a kid I was out till 11 p.m. in a bad homemade costume stealing candy from adults, now though I’m just a sad almost adult in a half-hearted attempt to get dressed up to go to a party that I want to leave after 20 minutes. Everyone loves the idea of Halloween and being scary, but when it comes to the actual day, no one really has any idea of what to do now that the door gets slammed in our face if we ask for candy.