What is it about Halloween that makes otherwise normal, thoughtful people totally lose all common sense and good judgement? I mean really.
Wielding a chain saw and walking around your dimly lit front yard while elementary and nursery age kids are begging for candy is just cruel.
Oh, and exchanging the daylight bulb on your porch for a black light, turning on a fog machine and strobe lights, and playing the Friday the 13th soundtrack while a 6-foot-tall broad shouldered giant in a Jason mask and prison-style one piece jumpsuit blocks children from access to the doorbell (and the promise of candy) is a nightmare enducing scenario.
And lest I forget, sitting motionless on your porch covered from head to toe in what looks like a black stocking only to flash glowing red eyes and move when an unsuspecting kid reaches for the candy bowl in your lap is beyond naughty.
One homeowner left his porch lit and scattered it with Halloween decorations. In the middle of the skeletons, petrified corpse busts and grave stones was a huge bowl of candy. Unattended? Hardly. Let a T-o-T come near the bowl, invest concentration in selecting the perfect candy, and the thoroughly engrossed candy seeker is shocked when he/she turns to find a masked stranger looming menacingly overhead. Confronted by a scolding parent (who notices the man and attempts to shield the easily scared child), homeowner quickly wisks off the mask and apologizes, "I don't want to scare toddlers, though I'm scary enough as it is without the mask."
With festivities like these, we don't need anymore tricks. And yet none of this phased Ya. Nope. You want to scare my son? Put out a carved pumpkin with hots inside and he's not coming anywhere near your house. Masks are scary, true, but Ya can "rawwwrrrrr" with the best of them and somehow doesn't see these coverings as a safety concern.
Now Chi is old enough to know about Jack-o-lanterns. She doesn't even glance at the craftsmanship. And she knows that some of the houses are intentionally set up to spook her. She doesn't hesitate (anymore). Instead, she makes a straight march to the doorbell, waits impatiently for someone to answer, smiles sweetly to say "Trick or Treat," and then promptly says, "I'm allergic to peanuts, so please don't give me any." And the poor well-meaning and generous treater goes fishing in his bowl for peanutless candy. Chi smiles larger as the candy adds weight to her bag, says "Thank you," and turns quickly toward the street in a retreat similar to those of the high heeled victims in horror movies as though she expected a chase.
When we first set out, the sun was setting, but there was ample light. Chi demonstrated Trick or Treat procedure and Ya was a quick study. He was a bit unclear about the purpose initially (clearly remembering nothing from last year's walk around), but by the third house he got it. And he was stoked.
Chi joined a neighborhood buddy, Taylor (Shark Boy, though she's a girl), and shot ahead of us. She maintained distance all night.
Perhaps she was embarassed by her Mama?
In the end, the kids gathered up a nice collection of candy - and if years past are any indication, we'll have the same candy last through to springtime.