“If the world were a logical place, men would ride side-saddle.” –Rita Mae Brown
This year I’m giving myself permission to ignore Halloween. I’m turning the downstairs lights off and I’ll stay upstairs and clean house or read or whatever. I love seeing the little children with their cute costumes and I enjoy giving them treats. I have to admit, though, that I feel a bit threatened when I’m here alone and all the small fry have gone home and the door bell rings and there are six-foot-tall teenagers holding out pillow cases as they mumble “trick or treat.” I saw on the news recently that some towns have made recommendations that no one over twelve should go door to door on Halloween. That seems reasonable to me. Last year I had a man come to the door with a pillow case outstretched saying “trick or treat” as if he had every right to be there. Now understand that I’m talking about a man who was at least mid-thirties. I felt like telling him to shove off but I didn’t quite have the nerve. So I put candy in his bag and got the door closed as quickly as possible, turned off the lights and went upstairs.
Like it or not, this is one of many ways in which women alone feel threatened. As Rita Mae suggests in the above quote, there are inequalities between genders which make no sense and they can be very frustrating. In this case there is some logic involved but it’s no less frustrating. Women in general are not as physically strong as men so we are more likely to feel threatened in unknowable circumstances such as Halloween trick-or-treat callers who should not be out there but don’t have the common sense to know what is appropriate.
I think I sound rather like Scrooge at Christmas. I’m actually not a Scrooge. I simply don’t feel safe alone on Halloween.