Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Boooowwaaaaah, Kristin van Ogtrop!

Shame on you, Kristin van Ogtrop!  Writing in Time magazine (October 27, 2014 issue) that you hate Halloween.  You clearly know nothing about it.  I would have thought a journalist like you would want to educate herself about its origins, history, and significance on the liturgical calendar.  I think you "hate" candy, masks, and decorations far more than you do the actual holiday since you don't know anything about it.

Well, your hatred didn't anger me as much as you writing "I'm pretty sure it's a fake holiday."  Again, you don't know what you're talking about.  Did you really Google "What does Halloween celebrate?" or was your comment about "nobody knows, not even the Internet" really about how you didn't bother to really read the history of Halloween at Wikipedia or at the website Halloween History or any of the other websites that came up and described why it's a holiday.

Or maybe you're just terrified of Death.  All Hallow's Eve is the day when the worlds of the living and the dead overlap, followed by All Saint's Day, the day for remembering the Saints.  It's part of a series of days that remember the dead.  I suppose you hate other days when we remember the
dead like Memorial Day or Dia de Muertos.  Maybe it would be interesting for your kids to learn about the holiday's origins and history, why they dress up in costumes, why Halloween is so scary.  Why they collect candy and what that used to mean, eh?

OK, OK, I know you wrote the article to amuse, at least the first part.  I thought it was interesting that you titled it "A Halloween Miracle" instead of "I Hate Halloween"  when you spend the first half on the hating part.  For certain, the miracle had nothing to do with Family Weekend at your son's university scheduled on October 31, or about deciding between him or your youngest who is prime trick-or-treating age.  I hope the real miracle was that you finally remembered that Halloween could be FUN.

It still can be fun, you know.  You have control over how you think and feel about the holiday.  Choose to have fun this year!  Please!  It doesn't have to be only for kids. 

I couldn't agree more with you about the decorations.  I feel the same way about Christmas.  In our society, these holidays, and others, have turned into opportunities to sell and profit instead of a time to celebrate the meaning of each holiday.  So we have people decorating their homes in excess, drawing attention to themselves, and running up their electric bills.  The money spent on costumes or presents, candy and parties, is incredible.  You want to escape Halloween.  I want to escape Christmas.

Next time you write about how much you hate something, though, please don't be so dismissive about something that really has a lot of substance, OK?

Boooowwaaaaaaah, Kristin van Ogtrop!


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