The Great Pumpkin

Halloween in the Philippines has gotten as badly commercialized as Christmas. For one thing, some folks now actually feel obligated to spend a considerable amount of money on sweets to give away. I admit, that for the past few years, I’ve been drinking from that Kool-Aid too. More in an effort to get along, to begin with, but with every passing year, I started to really enjoy it. I suppose that’s the creeping allure of all that commercialism.

On the other hand, the toddlers do seem to enjoy it. Sad to think, though how their enjoyment might be coming primarily from the accumulation of things. 

Yes, I suppose this is me slipping back into my curmudgeonly self. LOL. It’s just that I know that the Halloween tradition I grew up with – the tradition I identify as Filipino – isn’t going around asking people for candy. When I was a kid, this time of the year was all about remembering the dearly departed on both All Soul’s and All Saint’s days. October 31 – Halloween – was about getting ready to go spend the night at the cemetery, usually with cousins, and scaring each other witless chasing shadows in the trees. Halloween back then was no less fun for being dramatically less sugar fueled.

But things change, and, we can’t escape the pervasive influence of American culture, yes?  This isn’t to say American culture is all bad, of course. I’m just pointing out that the old ways weren’t too shabby either and there’s no call to raise our kids not knowing about them at all. After all, these days were meant for the commemoration of our dead. And these days, we all could use a few more happy memories.

In that spirit, then, I share this with you, and pray that the Great Pumpkin bless you this Halloween. WoooOOOooooh!



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