Thursday, October 25, 2012

To boo or not to boo

Mucho simplified information: On October 31st the wall that separates our world from the spirit (or other) world evaporates. On this night the spirits, beings and faeries from the other realm can cross over into our world. The tradition of dressing in costume is an attempt to fool ill-intentioned spirits into thinking the wearer is not human and avoiding possible harm. Depending on the culture, the giving of treats is either an offering given to ensure good fortune over the coming harsh months, or an offering to appease/honor the spirits of those on the other side. Now, on with the story...

Disclaimer: this is picture was not taken on Halloween nor is it a costume... this was D's room cleaning outfit c.2007

Last week my kidlet came home and said that they weren't allowed to wear costumes to school for Halloween this year. Instead, they could wear black and orange. The hell?

I told D that if he wanted to, he most certainly could wear his costume. If he got any grief for it he could simply say that he was changing things up and that the zombie butcher look would be his new daily attire. 'Nuff said.

My curiosity about this whole thing has grown over the past week. I've tried to think of the reasoning behind a costume-less Halloween. After much thought I figured it would be one of these five reasons...

1. The little kids are frightened by the spooky older kids
2. It's distracting and doesn't allow for a focused learning environment
3. Some of the costumes in the past have been inappropriate.
4. Someone complained about the sinfulness of dressing like a lollipop.
5. They don't approve of fun.

Last night the class newsletter came home. Again with the 'orange and black'.

I don't know if I got up on the wrong side of the bed, just a bit cranky today, or whatever, but I decided to call the school to get the real answer. Wait for it.... Wait for it.....

'They' decided not to.

Wha? Who's 'they'?

The kids.

Apparently the student council voted for the black and orange so their costumes wouldn't get ruined before the evening trick or treating. I don't know if I buy that. Perhaps with a lot of parent/teacher cajoling and bags full of candy some kids might agree to this sort of lame watered down Halloween but I'm having trouble accepting it. I know my kid pretty well. I bet you $5 that my kid would NEVER vote to wear black and orange over a Halloween costume. Ever.The fact that D didn't mention any of this after being asked a bazillion times about the no-go on the costume front is also fishy.

EDITED TO ADD: I just got a message saying it was the PARENT COUNCIL not the student council who made this decision. The decision was made so that children who do not have costumes would not feel left out. I made the suggestion that the children should then make costumes at school, get an art lesson and learn some history while they're at it. We'll see what happens next year.

Anyway, I've explained to the school that I'm stark raving pagan and that wearing a costume actually has some sort of meaning, there's a reasoning behind it. If the kid decides to show up in his costume he has my permission to do so, he's not just being a pain in the ass. I'm leaving the decision up to the kid, either way, I've got his back.

BUT now they're afraid he'll be made fun of.... for dressing up.... in a Halloween costume... ON HALLOWEEN! Pfft. Anyone who makes fun of him would be a fool. Just look at the math:

ninja warrior > orange pants

I rest my case.


  1. When I was teaching, there were certain religions that didn't celebrate Halloween and those parents did a big song and dance to complain about it being celebrated in school. So, in an effort to make every single person in the world happy, the school stopped celebrating Halloween. :-(

  2. That's really sad Teri. If we all just made a little effort to accept our difference we'd be so much better off than just shutting each other up.

  3. I'm glad my kids are all grown and I don't have to deal with this... except that now my kids have to deal with it with THEIR kids and so... it still pisses me off. Hope your Zombie Butcher has a fun time in spite of the pinheads.

  4. Zombie butcher and ninja pants totally trumps orange any day of the year, lol. What a shame that things have gotten so politically correct and watered down. We really do out children no favors by trying to over protect them! How will they learn to be big grown up strong zombie butchers without the opportunity to stand up for themselves and celebrate our differences? Loved your post, hope your son has fun whatever he decides to wear!

  5. My daughter received an email from my granddaughter's teacher saying very much the same thing! I about went through the roof when my daughter told me about it!
    A very sad state of affairs.....