I know a few days ago I promised an NFL midseason review, filled with new picks and predictions, but that was before I remembered that today, Thursday, is Halloween. Each year I try to do something Halloween themed for the site, and even though I have my new picks, that will have to wait one more day. Sorry to all my football fans out there, but I do want to do a holiday theme thing.
With that being said, I have mentioned many times how Halloween isn't the same for me anymore. I used to love it when I was a kid, didn't care in high school, used it as a reason to go to house parties in college, cared less about it when I got married and now, that I have 2 kids, it has come full circle. I am nearing a point again when I am able to find the fun in Halloween again, through my kids eyes. Getting them ready for trick or treating, having friends with kids come over to the house so they can trick or treat with my kids, seeing the excitement in their eyes when they are out getting candy, it has brought back the joy in the holiday.
That is not the point of my piece today. This morning, when taking my son to school, we were talking about the Halloween decorations we saw, and he asked me one of the tougher questions I have been asked in my life. While in the car, he asked me, "what is the most popular Halloween decoration?". I was stumped. I immediately said a ghost, but he pushed back and mentioned pumpkins. We then saw some tombstones and various monsters and bats and your random Halloween stuff. We then talked about what we thought was the most popular decoration for the rest of the car ride. I dropped him at school, and I am sure he forgot, but I have been kind of thinking on his question for most of the day. I instantly took off zombies. They may be popular now, but it is more of a recent decoration. I know that the original "Night of the Living Dead" was made way back in the 60's, but no one, for the most part, my age knows that movie all that well. Most people that know zombies are fans of "The Walking Dead", "Shaun of the Dead", "Zombieland" and the like. So that is too recent. I then shifted my focus to the Halloween monsters, and while cool, not the most popular. I see some yards that have a Frankenstein or Dracula in their yard, but that is few and far between. I also see the black cats with witches hats on, but I'm a dog person. Then there are witches, and for me, they didn't really become popular until "Hocus Pocus". That movie came out in the 90's. The tombstones are even a recent development. What with the punny names and all. The tombstones are more of a joke now.
So that left me with 2, the pumpkin and the ghost. I really cannot figure out which one is more popular. On one hand the ghost is synonymous with scares and jumps and spookiness. What time is spookier than Halloween? But the pumpkin, especially the carved ones, are EVERYWHERE. Hell, I have three of them in my front yard, my son's, my daughter's and mine and my wife's. And all throughout my neighborhood, I'd say that about 80-90 percent have, at the very least, a pumpkin on their front porch or in their yard. So, I do think, after much thought, that the pumpkin is the most popular Halloween decoration. If we are going for straight up scares, yes a ghost should win, but you can carve a spooky pumpkin if you are a talented artist. Also, pumpkins go into another holiday. Pumpkins are almost equal with Thanksgiving as they are with Halloween. I'm sure a lot of that came from people simply not wanting to ditch their old pumpkins, but now, pumpkins, and gourds, are just as acceptable for both holidays. Also, for the hooligans out there, you cannot smash a ghost, but you can smash a pumpkin. Side note, if I catch anybody trying to smash our pumpkins, you better hope you are faster than I am. I don't think the same could be said about a cut out ghost.
So, while I have been sitting on my son's question for a few hours, I think I have cracked it, and I cannot wait to tell him when I pick him up today. Anyway, pumpkins are the most popular décor, and Happy Halloween to everyone out there. This was fun.
Ty is the Pop Culture editor for SeedSing and the other host of the X Millennial Man Podcast. Ty is a man that loves his holiday puns, so a happy boo-tacular Halloween to all the little ghouls and ghosts.
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