We don’t have a Halloween tree in the living room

We don’t have a Halloween tree in the living room

I share my home and life with someone who is likely the biggest fan of Halloween since Linus van Pelt dragged his stupid blanket out to spot the Great Pumpkin. It is only thanks to a dearth of spooky ornaments that we don’t have a Halloween tree in the living room.

I've watched so many hauntings, slashing and gross out thrillers this month that I am honestly ready to binge everything Julie Andrews come Nov. 1. Come, Mary Poppins, and sweep the gore from my cobwebbed brain.

Of course, we are far too introverted to actually light the porch Halloween night, which falls incongruously on a Sunday this year. Good grief, how would we ever deal with a porch thick with weary parents and adorable spidermen and Disney princesses?

You know what would be easier than buying a trunkful of candy and sitting on the porch handing it out? Not doing any of that, that’s what. There are movies to watch.

Which is why I haven’t any swell suggestions for spooky snacks to serve your guests. Looking around the internet for ideas, I realized you deserve better than the Dracula denture cookies, meatball/eyeball soup and pumpkin stenciled deviled eggs I found.

The coolest thing I’ve seen are the decorative plastic skulls covered in varieties of lunch meats to look like cadavers, with martini olive eyes sticking out of raggedy sockets. It looks great, but I’m not eating anything off the plastic skull you’ve had stuck in the bottom of the tub marked “Halloween” in the basement for a year.

You can’t really make homemade treats for the kids, as such unwrapped cookies, fruits and hand dipped chocolates are the first things parents will toss when they get the kids back home.

Everyone knows that wicked people sneak sharp objects into Halloween candy every year, right? I remember as a kid this was a serious threat and there were all kinds of stories, none of which, as it happens, were true.

Since at least the 1950s there has never been a verifiable case in which a child has been injured by such means, and no case of having found such things has ever been brought to the attention of authorities.

It is a persistent, longstanding myth surrounding trick or treat night. Still, better safe than sorry. I will still toss anything suspicious before letting my kids dig into their lighted plastic pumpkin full of legitimate, prepackaged, preservative filled candy. Besides, I love the neighbor’s peanut clusters and am unafraid of mythical hat pins.

Halloween didn’t become a thing in the United Staes until the middle of the 19th century, when a flood of immigrants brought about a melding of traditions from eastern and western Europe and Native American celebrations of harvest time.

From that, Halloween began to shape up into something we might recognize today. It was in the late 1800s that people began to have parties, dress in costumes and send the children out begging for candy.

Halloween is still a mostly American tradition, with much of Europe holding onto All Saints Day Nov. 1 rather than the spookiness of the night before. In Mexico, Nov. 1 and 2 are also wrapped around the Day of the Dead, a lighter observance of All Saints Day and All Souls Day, which came into focus in the 2017 Pixar movie Coco.

And now the whole thing has been boiled down, American style, into whole grocery aisles given over to fat bags of expensive miniature candy to be given out to children wandering the streets on a single minded mission. And what about those costumes for adults out there? All I can really do is ask if your father has seen you wearing that, young lady.

Whatever you end up doing this year, be safe, keep an eye on traffic, and run that plastic skull through the dishwasher before you serve meat on it.