October 21, 2020

An Atheist Revolution Halloween Collection

Halloween decorations

I have compiled collections of Thanksgiving-related posts, Christmas-related posts and a collection of Easter-related posts. Considering that I do not like any of these holidays, it seems puzzling that I would do so. At least, it seems puzzling until one considers that, much like Christianity, I think about these holidays more than I'd like because I am surrounded by people who make a big deal of them every year. The real puzzle is not why I write about them but why I have written less about them than I have about my favorite holiday, Halloween. It is about time I did something about that, and so I am happy to present the long-overdue Atheist Revolution Halloween collection.

I figured I'd do something a bit different in presenting this collection. Instead of giving you nothing but a list of posts, I decided to start by explaining why I believe Halloween deserves such a collection. This will be followed by the usual collection of links to Halloween-themed posts I have written over the years. It's about to get spooky!

What's So Special About Halloween?

If I could celebrate only one holiday each year, it would be Halloween. No other holiday comes close, and I've felt that way for a long time. As a child under the age of 10, I enjoyed Halloween far more than any other holiday except maybe for Christmas. Unfortunately, Christmas managed to lose much of its appeal by age 10 thanks to...well...Christianity. Sure, it was a great excuse to spend time with family, but the Christian trappings and associated traditions were wearing thin. Halloween was just more fun.

As an adult, I've realized that I do not particularly care for any of the holidays those around me celebrate. I welcome Thanksgiving and Christmas for the few days off work they bring, but I do not do anything different on those days than any other day of the year. I've long hated the Fourth of July and New Year's Eve because of the fireworks (noise and litter). I've never cared for Easter. Even when I was a Christian, I found it quite pointless. It wasn't until watching an episode of South Park as an adult that I finally understood what rabbits and eggs had to do with Jesus. And the appeal of celebrating birthdays disappeared after 16. That was a big one, but I have seen little point in celebrating aging since then. The pain associated with growing old is one of the last things I'd like to celebrate.

But Halloween is different. I loved it as a kid, I loved it as an adolescent, and I love it as an adult. I don't celebrate it today in the same ways I did when I was younger. I don't go door-to-door begging for candy, and I do not believe in the ghosts, demons, monsters, hell, or any other aspects of the supernatural that terrified me as a child. It has been a very long time since I egged someone's house or threw rolls of toilet paper over their trees. I haven't put on a costume since college, and that was probably also the last time I drank myself into a near coma before sleeping with someone I didn't know who was wearing a delightfully slutty costume. And yet, this has not diminished my love of Halloween one bit.

These days, my observance of Halloween starts in early October. As the oppressive Mississippi heat and humidity finally begin to subside, getting outside becomes appealing. I have a small collection of Halloween decorations I pull out at the beginning of the month. Most are indoor decorations, as they are more for me than anyone else. The few outdoor decorations I still have will need to be replaced soon because they are falling apart and have been repaired as much as they can. And yes, my trips to the grocery store often involve me bringing home items seasoned with pumpkin spice. I love the stuff!

What little free time I have in October is usually devoted to watching as many horror films as I can fit in. Many are old favorites, usually classics. And while most of the newer horror flicks are disappointing, I rarely mind. Sometimes bad horror movies are fun in ways even the good ones don't quite manage. And there is always the joy of finding one of the rare good ones.

Since moving to Mississippi, I have repeatedly marveled at how much Halloween seems to terrify many of the local Southern Baptists. I loved it when fundamentalist Christians sought to create their own alternative holiday and named it JesusWeen. But ultimately, there's plenty for me to enjoy regardless of what the Christians are doing. The fact that some of them happen to be frightened by the holiday is just a perk.

Atheist Revolution's Halloween Collection

Now that I've explained why I think Halloween deserves some attention, here are most of the Halloween-related posts I have written at Atheist Revolution over the years:

As it turns out, there were more of them than I realized before writing this post. Whether you celebrate Halloween, JesusWeen, neither, or something else entirely, I hope you have a good October.