Is Halloween Overrated?

Lily De Bei, Staff Writer

Jack-o-lanterns, haunted houses, spooky ghost stories and tons of candy are among the many elements that make up Halloween–at least, that’s what I imagine. I didn’t grow up in the US, so I have very few memories and traditions associated with the holiday. I find that this has enabled me to look at Halloween from a more objective perspective. Over the years I have come to understand how much Americans adore their holidays so I implore all the Tim Burton fans out there to only take my perspective as that of someone with a very different set of experiences.

Since I’ve embarked on the journey that is suburban America, I’ve come to believe that the ultimate point of Halloween is the buildup–the day itself tends to be overrated, but the season surrounding it is truly worth the excitement.

Honestly, there’s nothing particularly special about October 31, unless you enjoy walking around in 50-degree weather with your little sister because she decided she wanted candy from strangers (which, I thought, was something to avoid, but I guess things are just different in foreign countries). There are also the cheesy movies and crappy candy, all of which can be found year-round at your local Dollar Store. Granted, my non-existent Halloween-related childhood memories, or my unrealistic expectations regarding high school and holidays, may be at fault for my disappointment–I blame Venetian Carnival for that one, and maybe life. I simply do not feel that famous last day of October magic that some people decide to make their entire personality since approximately July of the previous summer. Another discovery that I found especially disappointing is the lack of vacation days that we get for Halloween. What is the point of a holiday if we don’t get days off school? Watching horror movies is useless if I know I’m going to be terrified for a chemistry test anyway. All things considered, it’s just one school day out of the other 180.

I do not hate Halloween, even though at this point it may seem like the exact opposite. I’m not trying to be controversial or hateful, especially toward something that is so important for so many. It’s essential to acknowledge how joyful the “spooky season” can be. It gives us something to look forward to, which I find is essential to making it through the school year. With its enormous amount of decorations and themed trinkets, it creates somewhat of a change of scenery and, with this new source of entertainment, we’re more compelled to enjoy everyday life.

Even if all this pre-Halloween build-up ultimately leads to somewhat of a disappointment, it’s one that I’m perfectly fine with. It gives us a great excuse to have a whole month of unlimited decorating, candy, and mildly entertaining, really easy-to-make-fun-of movies.