Well, actually, that’s not entirely true. I do celebrate it the usual way – with decorations and candy at the door for the kids that come by. We play – very loudly – awesome music like Midnight Syndicate, Bach’s Organ Passacaglia, or my really cool Y2K CD of Best Classical Disaster music. We have pumpkin lights in the yard, and because my husband likes spiders, we have a few REALLY BIG ones that we set about the place. I like to wear a costume.
But there are differences. First, I’m not into gory, scary stuff. No zombies, no cleavers through skulls, no fake blood. And absolutely, utterly, unequivocally (is that enough “ly” words?) NOT any ugly, green, scraggly-haired, wart-nosed wicked witches.
That’s like, one of my main pet peeves.
Hold on, things are going to get serious here.
Ugly, conniving, wicked witches (yes, even Shakespeare’s) are nothing more than the wet dreams of the uptight, misogynistic, patriarchal men who established the world’s monotheistic religions. The sooner people throw that stereotype out the window, the better off we’ll be.
Real witches are people. Everyday, regular-looking kind of people. Sitting next to you on BART. In the cubicle down the hall. Teaching your son’s third-grade class. The CPU nurse taking care of your Dad after open-heart surgery.
You know. People.
Some of them are even men.
So on Halloween – Samhain – I don’t celebrate by putting cut-outs of black-gowned, evil women in my windows. I set out my cauldron loaded with squashes. I make cookies and pumpkin martinis. I light candles scented with cinnamon and cloves. I’ve even been known to wear a witch’s outfit, because even Disney knew that pointy black hats are simply fun.
And I watch the moon, and I think about the changing seasons, and the turning of the year, and how lucky we are to live on this amazing, gorgeous, alive, ball of rock and water.
Like real witches do.