Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Halloween for the New Millennium

It's time to update those old-fashion holidays
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We all know what Halloween is about: the candy. I've always wondered why November 1st wasn't named Sugar-buzz Day. Anyways, Halloween has always been a hit-and-miss experience. If it's your lucky night, Elm Street might be home to grandmothers who give out handfulls of king-sized Snickers, still-warm homemade chocolate chocolate chip cookies, Hershey Kisses, and the like. But, an entire evening spent on Maple street might only yield toothbrushes, popcorn balls, 50 boxes of raisins, and some stuff called Cisne (see provided link). Thus the need to modernize Halloween.

Kids can now be clued in thanks to standard-issue cell phones with Internet access. Upon hitting the mother-lode, Billy can now let everyone in the neighborhood know by uploading his success to a database. Data is categorized by zip code. Add a GPS in the mix so that the lil' tikes can learn about "lawngitude" and "laddytude" while trying to find Mrs. Miller who's shelling out those awesome treats.

Lucky_Setzer, Aug 14 2001

Try it, I dare ya... http://www.bad-candy.com/cisne/
If you want to discourage trick or treaters from coming back next year, just give em anything found on this website. [Lucky_Setzer, Aug 14 2001, last modified Oct 04 2004]

Bonfire Night http://www.innotts..../fawkes/fawkes.html
Where some of the traditions come from... perhaps [Guy Fox, Aug 14 2001, last modified Oct 04 2004]

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       Man Oh man-- this makes me sad that for the 7th year in a row I am too big to go trick-or-treating.   

       BTW: do ya'll even do this is the UK?
futurebird, Aug 14 2001
  

       Historically, no, but the influence of US pop-culture is such that over the past few years trick-or-treating has replaced the conventional 'begging-for-no-discernible-reason' which we once had.
(sp mother-lode)
angel, Aug 14 2001
  

       Re: //do ya'll even do this is the UK?//   

       We don't have the tradition of playing pranks, but we do have 'guisers', kids going out dressed up, going door-to-door, looking to get treats from those people who aren't hiding behind closed curtains or out in the pub avoiding the brats. The spin here is that the kids are meant to do some sort of 'trick' to earn their sweets - like sing a song, tell a joke or some such. I'd guess from the name that this is actually a pretty old tradition. I thought this was a UK-wide thing, but maybe it's more common in Scotland... Don't you have this, angel?
Guy Fox, Aug 14 2001
  

       Nods to [angel] for correction.
[Mefista] *wink* (Check the sp of the name):
//It would sadden me greatly if the fear, the horror, the death, the laughter, the costumes, the cold autumn nights, the pumpkins and all the rest were lost from this holiday, and only candy remained.//
Ahh, but that's hindsight 20/10 speaking. You can look warmly (depends on your climate, I guess) back on those memories now and realize what the holiday was really about, but as a young 'un looking for a buzz, it's about the thrill of those frightening neighbors giving out freebies.
As for getting goodies at home, the exact same candy bar could be sitting out on the kitchen counter, but I guarantee that the candy in the bag will be gone first. Must taste better ;)
I'll conceed on the money bit, tho. Just wait til the technology becomes less expensive.
Lucky_Setzer, Aug 14 2001
  

       Hallow-e'en is another one of those festivals which are becoming increasingly commercialised...I saw special doughnuts for it in Somerfield yesterday, and it's only the middle of August...and another thing, I always used to hate it when I was a kid and as soon as the Summer holidays started all the shops started sticking up signs for their 'Back To School' promotions. That really sucked.
-alx, Aug 14 2001
  

       In the UK Halloween used to be about scaring each other with ghost stories and having a costume party. Nowdays the American trick-or-treat ideal has taken hold to a limited degree. Mind you customs like this is the UK are regional, depending on local legends (witches, black dogs, famous ghosts, etc), and so each area has adapted to this change differently.
Aristotle, Aug 14 2001
  

       In my area (NE England), we had 'Mischief Night' which was the week before Guy Fawkes, but I suspect that even this was imported from Trick-or-Treat (only without the blackmail bit). Guisers are fairly well distributed throughout UK, but are not solely a Hallowe'en thing - there's a connection with the Morris tradition. Since US customs have become more prevalent, Trick-or-Treat has taken over from simply knocking on doors and asking for a 'penny for Hallowe'en'.
angel, Aug 14 2001
  

       It is interesting. Obviously there's been some crossover between Halloween and Guy Fawkes' Night. The 'penny for Halloween' tradition you mention (angel) seems to me to have come from the tradition of carting round an effigy and asking for a 'penny for the Guy' in the run-up to November the Fifth. I think there's maybe been a confusion of "guiser" - somebody in (dis)guise - with "Guy", because the holidays are so close together and have such similarities.   

       Anyway, Halloween has always been big up in Scotland, replete with kiddies in costume. If anything, I'd say it's *less* of an occassion now, rather than more, with parents less likely to let their kids out on dark autumn/winter nights. When I was a wean, (twenty years ago) it was a massive event, and just like the Americans, we went from door to door looking for goodies. Fruit and monkey nuts were the main things, then it became sweets; it's only in more recent times that the kids have wised up and want money.   

       My personal theory is that Guy Fawkes' Night took off partly because it was more politically and religiously acceptable than the pagan (even 'Satanic') Halloween with its roots in Celtic Samhain. The Americans might even be *more* traditional than us in this respect... it may seem weird but, after all, they still call Autumn by its original name - Fall.   

       Oh, and, for any Americans thinking "'Guy Fawkes', Guy Fox?", I've enclosed an explicatory link.
Guy Fox, Aug 14 2001
  

       The fireworks part of Guy Fawkes' Night is the only connection with the Gunpowder Plot. The bonfire is, as you suggest, a holdover from Samhain. (<aside> Satanism is a Christian invention, and plays no part in pagan tradition. </aside>) The begging thing is indeed associated with 'penny for the Guy', but without the trouble of making a guy.
angel, Aug 14 2001
  

       There's always been the trdition of 'guiseing round my way. It was meant to scare off all evil spirits before All Hallow's Day on Nov. 1st, thus making ti a pure day.   

       Normally, the kids trudge round their street, telling the same joke, singing the same song, or doing the same piece as they've done for the past three years.   

       Unfortunatly, there is always some little git who opens his gob as wide as his 'goody-sack' and expects you to start throwing Tunnock Caramel Wafers down his throat, for doin' nothin'. I like to surprise them by giving them monkey nuts tae chew on.   

       [By monkey nuts i mean peanuts in their shell, not a monkey's scrotums content]
[ sctld ], Aug 26 2001
  

       Even better, give them Brazil nuts in the shell. Hard as hell to peel, and taste like krep once you get there..
StarChaser, Aug 26 2001
  

       We (in the UK) have long had the tradition of young people harrassing the elderly, and breaking their windows\emptying their rubbish bins in their garden etc, but i didnt think it was limited to any particular part of the year.
Hans, Aug 26 2001
  


 

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