Shaming “Experienced” Trick-Or-Treaters

After a couple posts dealing with a serious topic, I wanted to switch gears a little bit. By no means am I saying that what I am about to write about (trick-or-treating) is a trivial topic, I am just saying it doesn’t pull the weight of identity theft.

Last night my sister sent me the below screenshot of someone’s Facebook post. I know none of these people, not the poster nor the sharer. In fact, it looks like this post might be influenced by many more people I don’t know as “Amanda” stated that the bulk of her argument came from another Facebook status that she saw.

This is the post that has inspired tonight's blog. I agree with some of it but not all.

This is the post that has inspired tonight’s blog. I agree with some of it but not all.

The argument is simple enough. Teenagers should not be shamed for trick-or-treating. The original poster recalled a childhood memory from the sixth or seventh grade. She shared that when her planned night of going door-to-door and saying those three magic words was chastised by others, she found herself attending a party instead. The people at this gathering weren’t just watching scary movies and the apple cider had a little kick to it.

This scenario presents a straight forward moral principle. How could any sensible person feel good about contributing to the attendance of a 13-year-old kid at a party because they discouraged a boy or girl from going trick-or-treating? I agree with this Facebook user. Much in the same way as it is not our decision to tell a child when he/she should stop believing in Santa Claus, it also isn’t our call to tell them when to stop trick-or-treating.

However, I do disagree with the second portion of the argument. This user believes that the premium candy should be reserved for the “senior” trick-or-treaters. I don’t go against this thinking solely because it was a longstanding tradition in our house to reward toddlers with a couple candy bars and older kids with a piece of bubble gum. Rather, I am strictly opposed to it because I don’t think it is our job to incentivize teenagers to continue to trick-or-treat. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t agree with telling someone she is too old to go door-to-door on Halloween, I just don’t think it is our duty to take extra measures to keep the high school sophomore out on the neighborhood streets until he graduates.

In most cases it is a good thing when someone graduates from trick-or-treating. It shows the person is maturing, and, most of the time, it is a decision made solely by the former trick-or-treater himself. I think we do a strong disservice to the development of our youth by slowing this process down. But like I have said, if it is not time yet for the person to move on from the spooky neighborhood streets, so be it.

Don’t put down a teenager for trick-or-treating. At that age, they don’t need added humiliation and scolding. When they approach your door greet them warmly and treat them with respect. Just please don’t give them the best candy in your bowl. Don’t Blink.

The Best Houses to Trick-Or-Treat At

Throughout this week I have seen various news channels, websites, and blogs feature lists on “the top trick-or-treat candy.” Okay, not a bad idea. Well it wasn’t a bad idea until seemingly everyone started doing it. Believe me, I definitely know by now that Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups are gold on October 31.

So forgive me if I refrain from using the above topic exactly…instead I want to add a more original twist to it. Growing up as a kid I definitely had my favorite candy that I wanted handed to me but even more so I had the favorite houses that I wanted to make sure I either knew about ahead of time or stumbled upon while going door-to-door. Please take note, my favorite houses did not necessarily give out the best candy, rather they just did something cool that most other homes did not, thus making them stand out even more from the houses that passed out Peanut M&Ms (my favorite candy). Here now is my list of the three best characteristics to look for in houses when trick-or-treating.

#1: Full Sized Candy Bars! – Everyone who has ever trick-or-treated has at one time or the other gone to a house where they were handing out (gasp) full sized candy bars! We look back on it now as adults and laugh because all we have to do is go to the vending machine at work and pay 75 cents to get a Snickers. But back when we were ten it was as if the person at the door was handing out $100 bills. Even if the nice man or woman was giving out Heath Bars (which I despise) it was a big deal to get a full sized candy bar. It definitely put a badge on your Halloween costume, something to tell your friends about at the bus stop the next day. Especially for someone like me who grew up in a household where if my mom ever gave me a candy bar it was cut in half, getting a full sized one thrown in the pillow sack was a major thrill.

#2: Help Yourself, Leave Some For Others – This is another situation that I am sure most of you probably encountered at least once or twice during your trick-or-treating days. You go up to a house and the lights are out and the garage door is shut and it is obvious that the people are not home. You start to walk away before fully reaching the door but then you see something on the door step. Is it what you think it is? Yes! It is a bowl of candy. Upon reaching the top of the steps you eye the candy bowl and the note that is attached to it: “Happy Halloween! We are sad that we can’t be home tonight but we still want to take care of our trick-or-treaters who come by every year. Take a piece or two of candy but please leave some for the next group.”

This is terrible, but I trick-or-treated with friends who once they saw the unguarded bowl made a straight out dash to the candy, knocking over the dish in a hasty attempt to be the first person to the loot. The candy would fly all over the place and my friends would scour like hyenas to pick up every piece they could. It was barbaric and bush league of them but the fact that the homeowners left a big bowl of candy out for the taking always impressed us.

#3: Goodie Bags – For me, the houses that gave out these goodie bags I am about to describe weren’t always as random as the full sized candy bar and help yourself houses. Whereas I never knew which homes would give out the big candy bars or leave a bowl of candy for the taking, I could always count on at least two specific houses in the neighborhood to give out goodie bags.

Again, this is something that was much cooler when I was a kid than looking back on it as an adult right now. The goodie bag consisted of a small Halloween decorated sack. Inside the sack you would find a combination consisting of a piece of salt water taffy, a fun sized Starburst pack, and a fun sized Milky Way. Getting a cool bag with an image on it that probably cost three cents and a few pieces of not very good candy got us very excited. Probably it made us so happy just because it was different. There was more effort thrown into it and it held a very good trade value later that night when bartering with friends.


There you have it my friends! What were the characteristics of your favorite trick-or-treating houses? Please let me know. Happy Halloween Eve! Have a fun and safe time tomorrow night. Don’t Blink.