Author Topic: Dear Abby on Trick-or-Treating  (Read 14963 times)

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Deetee

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Re: Dear Abby on Trick-or-Treating
« Reply #45 on: October 24, 2012, 03:26:53 PM »
The letter writer is ridiculous. 5:00 is close enough to reasonable Trick or Treating hours that you can expect the kids to start coming, so if she doesn't want to give candy at that time, she should turn off the porch light and then NOT answer the door.

No-one needs to give candy, but on Halloween in a trick or treating neighbourhood, you either shut off your lights and do no decorations (and no-one should come by) or put out the decorations and give candy.

Our street gets a lot of kids and the houses are about 50/50 as to whether they participate. I have never seen anyone approach an undecorated house with the porch light off.

Diane AKA Traska

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Re: Dear Abby on Trick-or-Treating
« Reply #46 on: October 24, 2012, 03:48:29 PM »
The letter writer is ridiculous. 5:00 is close enough to reasonable Trick or Treating hours that you can expect the kids to start coming, so if she doesn't want to give candy at that time, she should turn off the porch light and then NOT answer the door.

No-one needs to give candy, but on Halloween in a trick or treating neighbourhood, you either shut off your lights and do no decorations (and no-one should come by) or put out the decorations and give candy.

Our street gets a lot of kids and the houses are about 50/50 as to whether they participate. I have never seen anyone approach an undecorated house with the porch light off.

That's great for your area, but like I said, in some areas it's even more extreme.  I never decorate for Halloween, and I can't watch TV in my living room with the lights off because the ambient glow from the TV means I'll get doorbell ringing every couple of minutes.
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sparksals

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Re: Dear Abby on Trick-or-Treating
« Reply #47 on: October 24, 2012, 04:38:01 PM »
I have never heard of set hours either.  When I was a kid, we went out just at dark, around 5:30 PM and stayed out til around 9.  Sometimes we went home to dump off our first load.  I rarely see kids with pillow cases anymore. 

6:30 to 9:00 myself -- our parents insisted that we wait until full dark to let people finish their dinner.  Now, it is 7:00 to 8:15, with maybe a straggler around 8:30.  Kids today have no stamina.   ;)

Where I grew up, it is fully dark at 5:30.  Kinda far north.  Long summer days.

snowdragon

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Re: Dear Abby on Trick-or-Treating
« Reply #48 on: October 24, 2012, 06:48:01 PM »
The letter writer is ridiculous. 5:00 is close enough to reasonable Trick or Treating hours that you can expect the kids to start coming, so if she doesn't want to give candy at that time, she should turn off the porch light and then NOT answer the door.

No-one needs to give candy, but on Halloween in a trick or treating neighbourhood, you either shut off your lights and do no decorations (and no-one should come by) or put out the decorations and give candy.

Our street gets a lot of kids and the houses are about 50/50 as to whether they participate. I have never seen anyone approach an undecorated house with the porch light off.

That's great for your area, but like I said, in some areas it's even more extreme.  I never decorate for Halloween, and I can't watch TV in my living room with the lights off because the ambient glow from the TV means I'll get doorbell ringing every couple of minutes.

I'll second that. In my neighborhood, even having cars in the drive means you get a continuously rung bell - even having a completely blackened house doesn't work and really - why should I have to sit in the dark with my car not even in  my drive because some entitled kid decides that because the car is there the house better cough up candy?  Or worse yet why should I have to leave my home because the kids don't want to follow the established and published in the newspaper, rules of the day?
   

Diane AKA Traska

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Re: Dear Abby on Trick-or-Treating
« Reply #49 on: October 24, 2012, 06:49:52 PM »
Y'know, it's been literally years since I've read a newspaper.  But the basic point still stands, when did it go from "trick or treat" to "gimme candy!"?
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LeveeWoman

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Re: Dear Abby on Trick-or-Treating
« Reply #50 on: October 24, 2012, 07:47:45 PM »
I'd put up a sign telling the children that I wouldn't be giving candy. It might not chase off all but I'm sure it'd do so for many.

Diane AKA Traska

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Re: Dear Abby on Trick-or-Treating
« Reply #51 on: October 24, 2012, 07:59:27 PM »
I'd put up a sign telling the children that I wouldn't be giving candy. It might not chase off all but I'm sure it'd do so for many.

Upside:  I wouldn't have to do grocery shopping for eggs for weeks.
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Rohanna

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Re: Dear Abby on Trick-or-Treating
« Reply #52 on: October 24, 2012, 08:29:09 PM »
Y'know, it's been literally years since I've read a newspaper.  But the basic point still stands, when did it go from "trick or treat" to "gimme candy!"?

Probably since forever, since the very phrase "trick or treat" is basically a threat.... In the "good old days" boys in particular would be known to perform mild vandalism on houses that didn't fork over. I'd say the custom has become better behaved, not worse, in general over time.
My friends, love is better than anger. Hope is better than fear. Optimism is better than despair. So let us be loving, hopeful and optimistic. And we’ll change the world. ~ Jack Layton.

Diane AKA Traska

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Re: Dear Abby on Trick-or-Treating
« Reply #53 on: October 24, 2012, 08:40:18 PM »
Y'know, it's been literally years since I've read a newspaper.  But the basic point still stands, when did it go from "trick or treat" to "gimme candy!"?

Probably since forever, since the very phrase "trick or treat" is basically a threat.... In the "good old days" boys in particular would be known to perform mild vandalism on houses that didn't fork over. I'd say the custom has become better behaved, not worse, in general over time.

"Over time" in a broad sense, yes.  But the last couple of decades it's been less destructive, but more demanding. I blame snowflakes.
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camlan

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Re: Dear Abby on Trick-or-Treating
« Reply #54 on: October 25, 2012, 08:50:53 AM »
My town not only sets hours for TOT--from 5 to 8 pm, but this year, for reasons I can't fathom, they have changed the day. Official TOT will take place on Tuesday, the 30th, instead of Wednesday, the 31st. One place where I lived as a kid did this as well. I've no idea why. One of the neighboring towns has done the same. Makes absolutely no sense. Last year, TOT was on the 31st.
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Jules1980

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Re: Dear Abby on Trick-or-Treating
« Reply #55 on: October 25, 2012, 10:14:29 AM »
Maybe its so that Trick or Treating won't interfere with church activities.  My old town used to change the day if it fell on a weekday or Friday night due to school/football games.

Betelnut

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Re: Dear Abby on Trick-or-Treating
« Reply #56 on: October 25, 2012, 10:30:48 AM »
Y'know, it's been literally years since I've read a newspaper.  But the basic point still stands, when did it go from "trick or treat" to "gimme candy!"?

At least since I was a kid. "Treat or trick" meant "Give me candy" when I was young (late 1960's to mid-1970's).  It wasn't like I was really asking, "Hey, do you want to get a trick tonight? If not, give me a treat!" 

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Yvaine

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Re: Dear Abby on Trick-or-Treating
« Reply #57 on: October 25, 2012, 10:53:03 AM »
Y'know, it's been literally years since I've read a newspaper.  But the basic point still stands, when did it go from "trick or treat" to "gimme candy!"?

At least since I was a kid. "Treat or trick" meant "Give me candy" when I was young (late 1960's to mid-1970's).  It wasn't like I was really asking, "Hey, do you want to get a trick tonight? If not, give me a treat!"

It meant "give me candy" when I was a kid in the 80s too. I mean, it was the "ritual" phrase to ask for it, but that's what it really meant. And there were some adults who interpreted it as wanting kids to perform a "trick" (as in turning a cartwheel or singing a little song, not vandalism) in exchange for the candy.

There was still the vandalism aspect, but it was completely separate from trick-or-treating by that point. The older kids who went around egging and TPing were not the same kids who were going around asking for candy.

magicdomino

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Re: Dear Abby on Trick-or-Treating
« Reply #58 on: October 25, 2012, 11:02:06 AM »
I recently read a book on the history of Halloween.  The earliest mention of kids running around in costume dates to newspaper articles in the early 1800's about poor children disguising themselves and playing tricks on more well-to-do households.  (One suspects that children from those well-to-do households were sneaking out and doing the same thing, but the po' kids got the blame.)  Halloween was all about the tricks until the beginning of the 20th century, when a woman wrote a magazine article recommending inviting the little hooligans in for punch and cookies.  The children would be too distracted and happy about the goodies to put flaming bags of poo on the porch.  By the 1930's, some kids were starting to ask "Trick or Treat" but the trick was still a real threat.  By the 1960's, when I started trick or treating, gathering as much candy as possible was our goal, although teenage boys continued the trick condition (I remember being frightened by boys throwing firecrackers at the younger kids.)

On the whole, I prefer Halloween being all about the candy.  We had to padlock our mailbox to prevent it being blown up by a cherry bomb. 

Diane AKA Traska

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Re: Dear Abby on Trick-or-Treating
« Reply #59 on: October 25, 2012, 11:03:10 AM »
Y'know, it's been literally years since I've read a newspaper.  But the basic point still stands, when did it go from "trick or treat" to "gimme candy!"?

At least since I was a kid. "Treat or trick" meant "Give me candy" when I was young (late 1960's to mid-1970's).  It wasn't like I was really asking, "Hey, do you want to get a trick tonight? If not, give me a treat!"

It meant "give me candy" when I was a kid in the 80s too. I mean, it was the "ritual" phrase to ask for it, but that's what it really meant. And there were some adults who interpreted it as wanting kids to perform a "trick" (as in turning a cartwheel or singing a little song, not vandalism) in exchange for the candy.

There was still the vandalism aspect, but it was completely separate from trick-or-treating by that point. The older kids who went around egging and TPing were not the same kids who were going around asking for candy.

Well, there's a vast difference between "give me candy" and "gimme candy!", if you get my meaning.
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