Once again we find ourselves preparing for Halloween, that delightful day on which we embrace all of the things that make the red states uneasy – flagrant sexuality, clever literary references, the creeping socialism of trick-or-treating (spreading the candy around!).
If Halloween were a place, it would be Berkeley.
There are some who would tell you that Halloween is an evil holiday (oxymoron; look it up) but this is misinformation spread by those who would oppose the YUM and its followers. Halloween is no different from the many other harvest festivals celebrated throughout history, with feasting and merrymaking and the occasional strigoi or two. You know how it is... Anytime you throw a party you risk someone overindulging, starting a little trouble, turning into a preternatural wolf with glowing red eyes... It is a small price to pay to enjoy the conviviality of your friends and colleagues and to get to see them all in tight/revealing or dorky/embarrassing outfits.
You also get to eat. A lot. Of junk. It's great.
There are rows and rows crammed full of candy, from floor to ceiling in every store I've gone in this week – something of a Fortress of Yum. Yes, yes, overweight, hyperactive children. Yes, yes, big agribusiness monoculture. Yes, yes, countless health ramifications. Yes, yes, corn in my hair. (See King Corn) I didn't say it was wise to eat it all (everything in moderation...), but if you can stand in front of a giant wall of candy and not find your deeply hidden inner juvie clapping hands and saying “Oh, goody, goody!” then you really do need to get back to your Yummish center. I promise you that never, ever, ever of my own volition would I order a drink that involved lime sherbet or dry ice, (I'm more of a “Stoli-martini-with-a-twist” girl) but if someone hands me one on Halloween, I am transported. I actually despise Hershey bars, but if I thought that there was even the vaguest chance I could get away with it, I'd be out there going door to door in the hope of scoring a “fun size” sample of that very same chocowax. And Sweet Tarts? Don't get me started. I have eaten so many Sweet Tarts in a (far too recent) Halloween evening that my teeth hurt for days afterward. (...even moderation.) I don't care who you are. There is room in everyone's life for more treats, whatever your kink.
As far as the scary stuff goes, there is no need to do anyone permanent psychological damage or actually invoke any real evil. The aim is more to thrill than to terrify. (As with many things, you have to find your own threshold.) The goal is to get the blood racing, the heart pounding. Your senses heighten, alive with anticipation. Your breath is rapid and heavy. Now... what else does that remind you of? Yummish, indeed!
The sexy costumes are self explanatory. Disguises and role playing in general are playful and fun, letting us set aside our every day identities and every day mores to embrace those things about which we are curious and that our “real” lives won't accommodate. Blah, blah, blah. You guys know this one, so we'll skip ahead to...
Today's Yummish Exercise:
It's Halloween. Dig it.
Next: A really good recipe for oven roast tri-tip. (ask your butcher)