Well, tomorrow is the big day. Halloween.
I love Halloween. When I was a kid it was my favorite holiday, and NOT for the obvious reasons, although the candy didn’t hurt. I loved Halloween because I felt like it was that one day of the year that you could truly be yourself. You could be whatever or whom ever you wanted to be, because realistically you couldn’t do that everyday. Rainbow for a day
We all wear masks. It’s a requirement of being a part of society. We have our work mask, and our parent mask, and our spouse mask. We have our friend mask that we wear when we socialize, our adulting mask for when we are out in public; we have our obedient child mask that we wear when we are dealing with our parents. Sometimes we even have masks that we wear only for ourselves so that we see the person that we want to see when we look in the mirror rather than the person that we are.
But on Halloween you get to wear whatever mask you want. You can wear someone else’s if you like. You can make one, you can buy one, you can wear multiple masks at once; you can wear none at all. Because with the arrival of the holiday comes the rare air of acceptance that only blows for one day. No one judges you on Halloween because everyone else is doing the exact same thing–taking off the mask that they hide under everyday and showing who they really are and who they really want to be.
This theory carries over to the objects in our lives as well. We decorate our houses to make them suit our darkest inner delights. We hand out candy because secretly we all want an excuse to eat whatever we want without consequence. We play tricks and try to scare the pants off each other because it’s allowed (any other day it would be inappropriate.) We even let our food be something different on Halloween. We carve intricate designs into the would be boring pumpkins sitting around allowing them to be reincarnated as glowing faces in the night born to scare and delight.
Speaking of Jack ‘o Lanterns, I have to say this is my second favorite part of Halloween. I love pumpkins on the worst of days, but on Halloween they are just the best. I love seeing the creativity people have when it comes to carving, and although I have no great skill at it, I love to sit back and admire my handiwork as the sun begins set and their flickering faces begin to light up the night.
Two weekends ago I helped a friend of mine run her booth at an art crawl in a fairly artistic area of the city. I had to park rather far away and walk and although it was early for Jack ‘o Lanterns, there were many a brownstone decorated with fall decor, their stoops stacked with pumpkins and gourds. At one house in particular they had two white pumpkins, sentries on either side of the door. Adorning their heads were a rainbow crown so beautiful and striking that hours later I was still thinking about how cool and beautiful they looked.
Turns out, this is an easy thing to do. So easy, it is ridiculous, especially if you have young kids, like me, and you can’t let them carve. All you need are some old broken crayons, tacky glue, a hairdryer, an old box (recommended, not required) and some pumpkins (preferably white.) Everything can be done by little hands and in about 15 minutes you will have beautiful pumpkins wearing rainbow crowns and masks–a costume all their own that will last more than just the holiday.
We used little white gourds because that is what our local nursery had. Now is the time to do this craft because many of these places close their doors on November 1st and you can get pumpkins and gourds for a steal.
Once you have gathered your supplies the rest is pretty straight forward:
Let rest for 5 minutes for glue to dry.
When your have reached you pumpkins perfect look allow the crayon to cool and then show them off to the world.
Although I will be carving pumpkins tonight I know that the masks my little Jack ‘o Lanterns are going to wear will only last one day. On November 1st their now wrinkled and sagging masks with be their death shrouds as they head to the compost to await reincarnation. Hopefully the little white pumpkins know how lucky they are. They may be rainbows for a day, but they will be a source of joy for us well into November, weather permitting.