???WORDS BY SIMON E. SMITH

Halloween will soon be upon us and no doubt some tool will be scaring people dressed as a clown. What the smashing pumpkins is that all about?  

However, to get you in the spirit of this American holiday, we’ve taken a trip down memory lane, yes, it’s a scary lane, to remind you of the four things you’ll be missing come this All Hallows' Evening.

 

THE FILMS

Remember when you used to go round to a mate’s house and stick on a scary film. With the lights turned off the terror and excitement was immense. Like the first time you had sex…more terror than excitement for myself if I’m honest.

Some of the ones that standout include “Hocus Pocus”, “Beetlejuice” and “The Nightmare Before Christmas”. Yes, you may be thinking that last one doesn’t count but don’t forget it is set in Halloween Town, and the lead character is a skeleton.

One not to watch - as I had the pleasure of doing at eight - is “Evil Dead”. That film is just pure evil…as the title suggests. Thanks John.

HOME-MADE COSTUMES

Long gone are the days when papa used to throw a bin bag over your head and kick you out onto the street. Or was that just my Halloween? Come to think of it, he didn’t just do that on Halloween.

In any case, part of the fun of dressing up was making the costumes yourself. Toilet paper was transformed into a mummy outfits and empty plastic bottles were used as action hero oxygen tanks. There was always one kid who rocked up in a Power Rangers outfit. “That’s not relevant or scary John.”

 

TRICK-OR-TREATING

If you were to go treat-or-treating now you’d probably be arrested or offered a gluten free, diary free, vegan free, taste free, almond protein bar. With concern for the rise of diabetes and obesity in children, dumping a bag of Snickers and Mars Bars on a child may be a tradition worth abandoning.

Saying that though, there was always one health-conscious family that dished out fruit. “Yeah, thanks John, you can shove your banana up your arse.” I was nine.

VISITING GRAVEYARDS

Poking around an old cemetery nowadays may not look great, people will either think you’re depressed or in a k-hole. As a youngster eager for a thrill on Halloween, there was no place scarier than a damp graveyard lit only by moonlight and the screen of a Nokia 3310. #snake

“Mum, I’m just nipping out to the graveyard with John and the crew.”

In the end, most of us just ended up sat on a tombstone trying to scare a girl into getting off with us. The only monster that made an appearance that night was you.

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