I admit it, I’ve never really been one for celebrating Halloween (or for that matter, a lot of other holidays like Columbus Day and Valentine’s Day). In fact, there’s only one real “tradition” that I have around this time of the year – listening on the radio for the annual rebroadcast of something that happened around 55 years ago. The scene is like this:
The Armed Forces Network decided to send some of their correspondents into the Frankenstein Castle in Darmstadt, Germany. While in there, with the commentators already nervous about being in this deserted castle at midnight, a noise suddenly was heard in the vicinity of the microphones. What the reporters didn’t realize was that this was all a setup; the statue was set to fall while they were in there. However, because of this, one of them wound up fainting due to the shock of the event.
All of this caused calls to flood the switchboard in Frankfurt; in the end, they all got out of the castle safely, and it lived on as a piece of radio lore to this day. The station that I listen to the most often (a talk radio station, with a nice chunk of news in the morning and the afternoon), usually plays it on Halloween night, but since they have a basketball game tonight, it was played last night. The only odd thing is that this year, since the time change doesn’t happen until this weekend, it wasn’t dark when it was played; it just didn’t seem the same…
It’s out there on the ‘net, but I’m not exactly sure where to find it; I found a site that has a torrent of it, but apparently there’s a TV station that has it available for downloading. I’ll do some more digging to see if I can find it; I ought to be able to 😉
Incidentally, something that I don’t get about Halloween (and, again, quite a few holidays) is people decorating for the occasion. We almost put up decorations (a single banner), but that didn’t last too long because the wind blew one of the thumbtacks away, and then I made the observation that nobody would see it anyway.
As far as trick or treating goes, the last time I did it was over 10 years ago; I think I just put on a pair of glasses with some covering on it. However, the one trick or treating I remember was one where I was let loose on the streets of the town I live nearby to and allowed to walk the streets. If I remember correctly, I had a radio and was listening to the football game (Packers v. Bears), or was getting updates from someone. Since this was before the days of cell phones, I had to walk quite a distance, all the way over to where my cousin was living at the time. There are two details that I really do remember – first is that the clock on the bank hadn’t been reset for the end of daylight saving, and the other is the fallout shelter sign that was in the building where my cousin lived.
The other thing about trick or treating was that there was one neighbor of ours (not next door, but fairly nearby) who would put out food for folks to pick up; they always made sure that we got down there to pick up some candy from them. Luckily, though, we never had anyone ever stop by us to ask for candy; I know, lucky, eh? 😉