Halloween is the best holiday.

It just is, ok? It’s the day you can be ANYBODY, and you can stay up AS LATE AS YOU WANT and you can wear glitter and rainbow yoga pants to work and nobody will care. Actually I do that most days. Working from home is great.

When I was a kid, I lived nowhere. It was a mile to a real road from my house. Naturally, we weren’t going to trick or treat there. That would have been ridiculous. Also the one year we tried to go Christmas caroling, George came out of his house and threatened us with a gun because we do not celebrate the BIRTH of OUR LORD AND SAVIOR JESUS CHRIST AMEN we celebrate HIS DEATH and I remember my dad asking if we should go Easter caroling and George agreeing to that and then we got the actual fuck out of there in our pickup truck with the hay bales in back to sit on because it was too far for kids to walk from house to house.

Anyway, since I inherited my dad’s big mouth, we obviously were not going to trick or treat where we might come in contact with George, so we went to the suburbs.

My mom’s best teacher friend lived in the suburbs and had two kids who were about the same age as my sister and me, but more importantly her husband always had weed. I am reasonably sure my parents were high as fuck every year, and more power to them (hi, mom, i’m looking forward to THIS text). Mae-mae’s a black cat. Again. At night. Rae’s … what the fuck is she. Her underwear’s out of her leotard. Whatever. puff puff pass.

There was a two block loop/figure eight that we’d make. We were allowed to go around the block alone (more or less; our parents were at the corner, or at the end of the sidewalk, watching) but not cross the street.

And somewhere on the loop was That One House.

You know the house. The one where you didn’t get candy, but you got something that definitely cost more than candy, so why the fuck didn’t they just have candy, instead of some bullshit like a toothbrush (fuck you) or an eraser (what are you trying to say here) or, in our case, a rubber puppet. And a Chick Tract.

Those rubber puppets were great. One year it was the little translucent monsters you stick on the ends of your fingers, with the arms you always pulled off because they were so stretchy right up until they stopped stretching and snapped. One year it was faces – skulls and zombies and I think a Frankenstein’s Monster – that you stuck your fingers in holes in the back of to move them like muppets.

But to get a puppet you had to take a tract.

Chick Tracts, if you haven’t encountered them, are these sort of nightmare evangelical comic books, about kids who are DEFINITELY going to ACTUAL HELL for doing totally normal kid stuff, until they FIND JESUS and are SAVED because [list of Bible verses on the back of the tract]. They’re about 2″ by 3″ in book form, and they are… um.

My personal favorite is the one where the girl commits suicide because her roleplaying character died. It’s the best because it accidentally overrepresents the number of girls accepted in the roleplaying community, along the way to telling you that your d20 was definitely going to make you kill yourself. Also you’re going to HELL for that.

Doom Town, which the website describes as “deliver[ing] a compassionate plea to repent of homosexuality” (can’t you tell how compassionate it is from the title? DOOM TOWN. Definitely the kindest gentlest thing they could think of for us hellbound queers), is another gem, explaining that gays are planning to commit blood terrorism to raise AIDS awareness. Incidentally, this same reasoning is why the Red Cross won’t accept blood from men who have sex with men (in most cases; your jurisdiction may vary; it’s not a requirement but they sure treat it like one) or the women who have sex with men who…


So my Halloween always came with critical reading skills. But there are three rules that you should follow to make sure your Halloween is the greatest:

  1. Don’t be That One House
  2. Give blood
  3. Go fucking vote

Thanks for coming to my TED talk.