By Nicky Reid aka Comrade Hermit
Exile in Happy Valley
Halloween is quite easily my favorite holiday. A heathen celebration the Christians failed to conquer, it’s a time of joyful chaos and youth rebellion decorated by skeletons, scattered leaves, flickering jack-o-lanterns, and bonfire smoke. A holiday where serial killers are lionized and everyone dresses in drag, betraying conformity to expose their darkest desires to be whores and outlaws. It’s the one time of year when a genderfuck malcontent like me can feel halfway normal without having to sell out. It’s also arguably this stupid countries only truly anarchist holiday, or at least it was and it still should be.
There was a time, not so long ago, when Halloween meant one night a year when kids owned the streets, wandering unsupervised from house to house dressed in disguise like demons and monsters, appropriating candy from random strangers under the threat of vandalism like tiny unions of egoists. Trick or Treat began as a threat. You could hand over the good stuff (and it better be good) or you could get your house fucked up in a toilet paper draped act of propaganda of the deed, letting the whole neighborhood and any other passing horde of hoodlums know who fucked up and why. In certain parts of the country there was a completely separate holiday called Hell Night, when children engaged in mass acts of gleeful sabotage against the parents, teachers, clergy, and cops who made them feel powerless during the rest of the year. Windows were broken, tires were slashed, and a sense of justice was returned to the universe.
Halloween and Hell Night weren’t like Christmas or Easter. The only gifts you got where the gifts you took, the gifts you earned. It was an empowering event that celebrated lawlessness and the collective power of us against them. So it should come as little surprise that the thems of this world have conspired to neuter this heathen celebration of unfettered youth power, by badge, bible, or checkbook. Over the last couple decades Halloween has been transformed into something truly monstrous, the worst kind of monster, a fascistically vanilla monster called “normal”. A pejorative so hideously fowl that it could have only been created by an adult, dead from the heart up.