Ann Cannon: Halloween lover or hater: which one are you?

First Published      Last Updated Nov 25 2014 11:05 am

Have you ever had a friend with whom you are so simpatico that you assume the two of you like all the same things? The same TV shows ("The Good Wife"). The same sports teams (the Utah Jazz). The same kinds of books (detective novels). The same kinds of food (all food, duh). The same holiday (Halloween).

Then one day you realize that this friend actually hates the holiday you thought you both adored (Halloween)? And when you realized this, did the planet tilt on its axis a little bit because you have always loved, loved, loved Halloween, even though your dad always went through your candy when you got home from trick-or-treating and stole all your Tootsie Rolls? And then denied it? And would probably still deny it if you brought it up with him today?

Well, that's how I felt when I finally realized after all these years that one of my closest friends is a Halloween-hater.

People, I was stunned. How could anybody dislike a holiday that involves free candy?

So I asked this friend if she would be my stunt double this week and share her reasons for hating Halloween. I promised I wouldn't use her real name (Lisa B.), so instead I will call her "Not Lisa B."

This is what "Not Lisa B." had to say:

"Why do I not love Halloween.

"First of all, my feelings have softened a little bit of late. But when I was the mom of a bunch of children, it seemed like there was so much pressure to get costumes in order, and that there were so many more things that people wanted to be. Like a Jawa from 'Star Wars' or Poison Ivy from one of the worst of the Batman movies. (Sorry, my kids who wanted to be a Jawa or Poison Ivy — nothing against you personally.) Whereas when I was growing up you could be: Hobo or Gypsy or maybe Ghost if there happened to be a stray white sheet your mom didn't mind letting you use. But I'm sure I'm remembering it wrong, and my mom did a zillion things to help me be Gypsy, which was my usual. But in my mothering days, assembling the elements of the costumes seemed to be more than I could handle, especially for a holiday in which your children went around and begged for candy and then you had to let them eat every last piece of it.

"Also: What if you wanted to watch a nice television show when the trick-or-treating was happening? And people kept coming to your door and knocking/ringing and begging for candy?

"Well, that's it. Now that I examine my reasons I see that I am/was a selfish person whose television watching was more important than neighborliness. That's just not right. This is why I have obtained several Halloween themed T-shirts that I can wear one or another time in October, and this is also why I get your big bag of Tootsie Roll-themed candy and pour it in a giant bowl. Sometimes I set it outside on the porch with a 'Happy Halloween!' label, because these days we run all over the place to see the grandkids' cute costumes and trick-or-treat with them a bit."

So which are you, Tribune readers? A Halloween-lover or a Halloween-hater? Feel free to chime in and share your reasons.

(And don't let my dad near the Halloween candy.)

Ann Cannon can be reached at acannon@sltrib.com or facebook.com/anncannontrib.