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ruthless compassion
31 October 2004 @ 01:41 pm
The October theme from The Sun is Weddings. As I wrote earlier this month, I'll be using these themes each month to try to spark myself into writing pieces a little different from my lj norm. I invite you all to join me, either in comments or in your own journals. The only rule is that what you write be nonfiction.

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ruthless compassion
31 October 2004 @ 08:25 pm
I've always lived in neighborhoods where Halloween wasn't much of a big deal. My parents' house is in a neighborhood where, when I was growing up, houses were about a quarter mile to a half mile apart, which wasn't a great density for trick-or-treating. Once I got old enough to care about bang-for-buck (and didn't want to be driven from distant house to distant house by a parent), I started trick-or-treating in town with friends. We usually got a little kid at our house each year -- the young kid of a friend who was just dropping by a few friends' houses for their first year of it.

Then, of course, I moved to college, where I vaguely hoped the college would set up an in-the-dorms trick-or-treating scheme for the kids of the town, but it didn't, so, needless to say, not such a big thing there (plus, most of my classmates were busy having parties).

When I moved to Medford with Aileen, I thought it might be my big chance to live in a Halloween neighborhood. I bought a couple of bags of candy in preparation, but alas, it was not to be. We had a small handful of kids (maybe 3 or 4), and we were forced to eat the remainder of our mini candy bars ourselves. The next year, we weren't even home.

Then I moved to the non-neighborhood in Porter Square, where there were a) no kids and b) no neighborhood and c) we lived at the end of a tiny, dead-end street that most people didn't realize existed. No trick-or-treaters there!

At my last apartment, in Brookline, I again had high hopes, but I lived in an apartment building, rather than a house, and if there were trick-or-treaters, they skipped our building.

Alas.

But then, I moved in here.

Sometime after I moved in, totient and miss_chance told me that Halloween was a Big Deal in this neighborhood. I was excited. As Halloween drew near, it became obvious that this is a neighborhood that takes its goblin holiday seriously. Lights, cobwebs, pumpkins and jackolanters sprouted in front of nearly every house. Liz even commented on it when she visited last week: "Is this neighborhood particularly into Halloween, or am I just super out-of-it?"

And then, tonight, we had some trick-or-treaters. The other side of the street got noticeably more traffic, but we didn't do too badly with our 158 trick-or-treaters.

Another year like that and I'll bring my lifetime average up to something respectable!