Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Shiny, Happy People and Halloween Humbug

Do you have people in your life who you absolutely adore, but don't spend much time with? We seem to have an abundance of people who we really like, but for one reason or another don't get together with as often as we should. Two of the most amazing people I know happen to be married to each other and we finally had them over for dinner last night. Peter Rohloff and Rebecca Plummer Rohloff are a doctor and an artist respectively, but so much more. Every time we get a chance to talk with them, we learn something and they make us think about things in a different way. Unfortunately, Rob and I are on our worst behavior when it comes to people we both dig equally and we fall all over each other talking to them. We love to entertain and we have gotten better about talking to much when we have guests, but we have a long way to go. I totally left Rob to do all the cooking while I nursed and nursed and nursed Josie some more. So we ended up with vegan pizza which was yummy, but very odd shaped and prepackaged organic salad so no pictures of the food.

I won't get into everything interesting we discussed (midwifery, Guatemala, religion, veganism, etc.), but Rebecca did shed some light on a pressing topic for me lately (not global warming...although it should be)...Halloween.

I don't like Halloween. pum

1. It is not very vegan friendly...we usually hand out expensive vegan candy which I order from my friends Shari and Phil at Pangea. The boys are usually happy handing out the candy and eating a bit themselves and watching the costumed kids. They haven't had any interest in taking part...until this year.

Some of our other vegan friends go ahead and trick-or-treat and just switch out the candy for vegan stuff. I have really never liked this idea for us.
2. I don't like a lot of the costumes and the idea of begging for candy and threatening people if they don't receive it.

Rebecca's comments at dinner made me realize I know very little about the meaning behind Halloween. So...I'm in a quest over the next week or so to learn about other cultures and how they celebrate and what is the point anyway. Maybe I'll come away with an idea of how to celebrate this holiday ourselves.

If anyone has some non-traditional ways to spend Halloween or stories behind the meaning of the holiday, please leave me comments.


Tracy said...

You might enjoy this article on the history and meaning of Halloween. I am not a huge Halloween fan myself, but I am trying to find ways to satisfy ds's fascination with all the gory stuff in a proper context. We don't do a lot of trick or treating, but ds LOVES dressing up. Maybe you could have a small costume party with a few of your kids' friends, so that they get to dress up, but treats are controlled. Bring back the tradition of bobbing for apples!

VeganLinda said...

Thanks, Tracy!

half pint pixie said...

have a look at the wikipedia entry of samhain, the old Irish festival which became hallowe'en. It celebrates the end of the harvest, the start of the new year. We light candles to remember our family that have gone before us.

We dress up too and "go round", our version of trick or treat. In Dublin, they have a big night parade which is fun. Bonfires are a big thing too.

Sadly it has become way more comercialised since my youth, as have most things! We're going to try and keep samhain as traditional as possible for our little pumpkin as she grows! and yes, the vegan sweet thing, very annoying!

VeganLinda said...

Half Pint Pixie,

Thanks for the link. Very interesting. I like the idea very much from of remembering those who are gone. I hope we can find a way for our family to celebrate parts of this time of year without being drawn into the commercialism/consumerism.