Subversionary, That’s What I Am

sub·ver·sion·ar·y [suhb-vur-zhuh-ner-ee]

tending to subvert or advocating subversion, esp. in an attempt to overthrow or cause the destruction of an established or legally constituted government.

Alright, alright, no worries – I’m not gunning for the destruction of any established or legally constituted government.  But a certain established or legally constituted holiday?  That’s TOTALLY fair game!

I have nothing against Halloween on a moral/religious level.  I don’t get all wiggy about the witches and ghosts and goblins, though I do appreciate my church’s rule that there be no scary masks or overly grotesque costumes at the church carnival.

I just can’t stand the idea of spending family budget money on things like candy and costumes.  It doesn’t compute.  The payoff is so temporary, and in some cases totally annoying (ie:  kids all hopped up on sugar!).  I have the same reservations about spending money on fireworks on the 4th of July, although now that we live in Texas, that’s much less of a concern.  (’cause 98% of your neighbors will put on a slightly frightening pyrotechnic display to celebrate their freedoms, leaving you indoors and praying your lawn doesn’t catch fire, but at least your budget goes untouched)

This year I was more bah-humbug about Halloween than I have ever been.  We didn’t even get pumpkins to carve!  And though we did buy candy, we didn’t spend a dime on costumes.  Still, the kids got creative and did fairly well:  H14 was a spazzed out somethingorother (it involved crazy hair, make up, clothes, and accessories), M12 was Jack Sparrow, A10 was a doctor, and I7 was a wizard.  I didn’t even bother getting the baby dressed up.

The candy we bought ended up inspiring an award-winning trunk design for our church’s Halloween Trunk-or-Treat.  We went to the store on Friday (of course), and we were greeted at the door by a gigantic Christmas tree and tons of Christmas items already lining the shelves.  We went to find HALLOWEEN candy – it being HALLOWEEN and all – and we couldn’t find anything!  That’s when my husband chuckled and said, “Should we just buy Christmas candy?”  And and idea was born.

We bought miniature candy canes to hand out.  Then we unpacked a bunch of Christmas decor, and grabbed a Christmas CD and the Santa hat.  My husband’s SUV has a regular electric outlet in the trunk of his car, so we were able to put up a strand of Christmas lights, we had the music playing, we layed down the red tree skirt on the bed of the trunk, then decorated with snowmen and santas, etc, with my husband wearing the Santa hat and handing out candy canes.  It was AWESOME!  And we won best trunk!  Yeah us!

I did have one person lament that we were getting ahead of ourselves.  I had to explain that the whole idea was kind of a hidden social statement – a satire in a trunk, if you will.  I joked with others that we had just decided “if you can’t beat ’em, join ’em.”  This was obviously lost on the children, which was just as well becuase it was SOOOO sweet to see them oohing and ahhing at all the decorations.  Though I think some of them were incredibly confused, too, which made my husband say “It’s kinda funny messing with their heads!”

Halloween turned out to be a lot of fun, despite my initial dread hesitation.  The activities committee at our church put on a FANTASTIC carnival, we got to show people a little more about our strange sense of humor with our trunk design, and the kids really did have a good time.  But next year, will someone PLEASE remind me that I live in Texas now, and that Halloween doesn’t just equal candy and costumes, but BUG SPRAY as well! (I have big ol’ bites all over my calves and ankles!  I’m used to bundling up on Oct 31, not spraying myself down!)