Friends & Family, Ugly & Beautiful

Tricks and Treats: On Fear, Bravery, and Halloween

When I was a kid, we lived down the street from our local pastor. Despite some of his congregation’s hesitations about the holiday, he absolutely loved Halloween.

I don’t remember how he decorated his house or if he ever wore costumes. I don’t remember what kind of candy he passed out. I remember two things about Pastor John’s house on Halloween night: he always looked delighted to see us, and he always made us do a trick before we could get a treat.

Apparently, this is a custom in certain areas but it wasn’t a custom in ours. As far as we knew, it was just Pastor John.

At first, the idea of performing on his front doorstep was terrifying. Should I tell a joke or sing a song? What if I wasn’t good enough? What if he gave me a rock instead of candy like those horrible adults in It’s The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown?

But I did it. I was brave.

To me, bravery is what Halloween is all about.

Continue reading “Tricks and Treats: On Fear, Bravery, and Halloween”
Goals & Challenges

33 for 33: Hocus Pocus

HocusPocus

I’m almost ashamed to tell you this, but until last night I had never seen Hocus Pocus.

What?! you’re probably saying. It’s one of the classics of our generation! I watch it six times every Halloween and constantly post .gifs from the movie on social media!

I know. It’s a thing. A thing I missed out on–until last night, that is.

You see, growing up, I wasn’t allowed to watch anything involving witchcraft or magic in general. My parents went through an extremely religious phase of life and so whenever my peers talk about Hocus Pocus or The Craft or even The Smurfs (apparently Papa Smurf cast spells? I don’t know, I’ve never seen it), I kind of smile and nod along and wait for the subject to change. I only got into Harry Potter around the release of the third movie as sort of an act of rebellion, though the rules had softened by then. Of course, nowadays, my mom is a big fan of the Harry Potter movies and keeps borrowing my copies of the books, so, you know. Things change. Continue reading “33 for 33: Hocus Pocus”

Reading & Writing

Writing Exercise: Fear

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There are a lot of ways to interpret today’s exercise. You can go the Halloween route if you choose, or respond to the horrors of recent news headlines, imagine yourself the victim of a hurricane (or if you are one, recount your experience). Whatever you write about, today I want you to write about fear.

No quippy lead-up today, no time limit. Have fun with it or use it as therapy. And this time, I’m not going to ask you to share with me, nor am I going to share mine.