The Tempest Online™

~ Sic gorgiamus allos subjectatos nunc. ~

…Or They Will Egg Your House!!

Posted by Daniel on October 27, 2008

PhotobucketAlthough I haven’t gone trick-or-treating for almost two…um…well, suffice it to say it’s been a while, I still remember the greedy delight I took in collecting, cataloging, and ultimately binging on Halloween candy each year. Now that I’m officially some sort of grownup, I feel it’s important to consider my Halloween Giveaway Strategy — in other words, fit myself into the landscape of treat givers that I remember from back in the day.

These are the archetypes I remember:

The One Piece of Candy Per Kid Rule: (aka The Cheap Bastard “There Are Rules” Approach). This method generally involves a big bowl of “fun size” goodies monitored by a stern taskmaster. Each child follows the universally agreed-upon process of saying “trick or treat?” and his or her hand is allowed to grasp a single treat from the bowl. Any child attempting multiple treats is immediately disciplined/shamed publicly…every time they see you.

The Monty Hall Mom: These folks generally go for a bit more costume-related chat, then offer a “handful” of candy, which makes it a game of skill for kids with little hands. Strategy is key — using a scooping method can yield more candy than closing your fist around the goodies.

The Absentee Landlord: (aka the Leave Me Alone Family). These people leave a tray of stuff by their front door, sometimes with some lame rule (like “take only one, please!”) on a sign. Because of the inherent greed issues here, the goodies are usually apples or something equally disappointing.  It’s easy to spot thses houses from the street, because someone has eviscerated every one of their pumpkins.

The Fruit Peddler: I really wish there was some kind of hobo code for kids to identify these houses. At best, you get an apple, tangerine, or box of raisins. At worst, you get a weird lecture about how fruit is better than candy. (On the bright side, when you grow up you’ll sort of understand. But you’ll never forgive.)  These people only get one chance, after which, their house is skipped every year from then on.

Here’s a Nickel, Go Buy Yourself a Clue: These people give you money — in pitiably small quantities. Perhaps they’re hoping you’ll start a college fund. In my day the going rate was a nickel. Do kids get quarters now?

The Slightly Unsettling Proselytizer: I only encountered this once, when trick-or-treating in a fancy neighborhood in Dalhart, Texas — but it has stuck with me. My fellow trick-or-treaters and I were greeted at the door by a smiley couple who gave us full-sized candy bars with Jack Chick Tracts wrapped around them.  I hated this then and I hate it now.  Save that shit for the Girl Scouts when they sell their cookies.

The “I’m Totally Not Home” Guy: Dude, we see that your TV is on in your otherwise darkened house…couldn’t you just leave some fruit by the door?!

So let’s have it. What’s your Halloween Giveaway strategy? And I’m also dying to know: what candy/fruit/money/tracts are you giving away this year?

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