Halloween: The Miley Cyrus of Holidays

I love holidays. I adore them. I’m totally pro-holiday.

But if there’s one holiday that makes me a tad bit uncomfortable, it’s Halloween.final

Let me explain. Christmas as a child is magical. Christmas as an adult fills you with the nostalgia of childhood and the warmth of tradition. Christmas is an all ages event. Maybe when you’re 85 you can make it about spiking the eggnog and passing out to avoid listening to your grandchildren’s squeals, but for the most part, Christmas is for families, for friends; for everyone from all walks of life.

But I will never forget my grade 12 school (but not school-sanctioned) Halloween party. Though I love ’em to death, most of my friends went as “that kind” of sailor, or superhero, or cartoon character. What did I go as? Audrey Hepburn. Audrey Hepburn, who would be rolling in her grave had she in fact found herself in that same club full of drunken teenage slutty ninja turtles.

Because, as I learned, Halloween is the Miley Cyrus of holidays. It so drastically morphs from a holiday of trick-or-treating into a drunken party for half-naked adults. And, I mean, you don’t HAVE to go get your drink on at the club with the frighteningly spandex clad version of the cast of Spongebob Squarepants, but you certainly AREN’T going to get away with trick-or-treating past the age of 19.

No, no, I’m not saying that one year you just get kicked from getting candy at the door of your neighbour’s house to getting frisked at the door to a club.  But there’s a definite pressure about the holiday to do so. You either celebrate “grown-up” Halloween, or “kid” Halloween, and when you identify as neither child or adult, it’s kind of an awkward holiday. At 15 or 16 you’re shamed if you try to celebrate either version.

That being said, I love Halloween. Or at least, the homemade balance of Halloween that works for me. I’m all about cheesy movies and candy corn. I’m all for pumpkin carving and T.V. specials, and I’ll admit to appreciating a sloppy celebration here or there. I promise you I won’t try and go begging for candy, but I’d also like to highlight the dressing-up, instead of the stripping-down. And hey, according to crazy ladies preaching the dangers of such a “satanic” celebration, we’re all going to Hell no matter how we celebrate the damn thing.

Day 7: Dear Selfiers

31 Days of Summer: Day SEVEN

Dear Selfiers,

I will admit, that yes, you all look decently cute and perky in your little digitalized frames; filtered to perfection and hashtagged appropriately before their publication. An occasional selfie or two seems fine and relatively normal when displayed via instagram, twitter, or facebook. And I am not here to judge anyone’s selfie-ing habits. I’m just here to make the observation that to witness a selfie occuring in the real, three-dimensional world is, well…awkward as HELL.

The thing is, a selfie is a very intentional thing. You do not take a candid selfie. Thus, selfies are incredibly unnatural, and well, awkward.

What I’m trying to say is, it makes me uncomfortable. It’s like public displays of affection: I understand a smooch here, a hug, or some holding of hands. I can even appreciate it. It’s cute.

A quick selfie snap is a-okay with me. But in the same way that a couple totally going at it in the produce section of the grocery store alarms the shit out of me, you posing with a broccoli head and continuously trying different overly enthusiastic expressions whilst selfie-ing makes me never want to buy broccoli again. It also makes me wonder if you’re running a weird vegetable fetish instagram account and I don’t want to stick around to see what you have in store for the zucchinis.

While it’s weird for me, in the long run, it’s you I worry for. There was a time when people did things just for the hell of it and then they were done, and the personal memory of the thing was sufficient. Recently I went to the beach and experienced some poor girl having an extended selfie photoshoot. Her face lit up with an artificial smile during each shot that disintegrated the moment she looked at the picture she had just taken. Selfie girl’s face and…THE OCEAN! Selfie girl’s face and…HER TOWEL! Selfie girl’s friends were laughing away and selfie girl was sitting in the sand capturing her face…again. And it made me a little bit sad.

So, selfiers, have fun with your occasional duck face. But do not be consumed by the artificiality of these moments you force yourself to create. Remember that there is a big, wide, unusual world that exists in the opposite direction you are pointing your camera, and the beauty it holds lies in it’s inability to be captured and contained.

#yourstruly,

Kat

 

Failure: The Grand Escalator Exodus of NYC

This post is part of the “Blogging from A-Z April Challenge”! The “F” themed inspiration for today is “failure.” Enjoy!

They say perspective is everything. And I think you can tell a lot about a person by how they react when things don’t go exactly according to plan.

But I think my reactions to failure are a bit excessive.
I love failure; mine, yours, your cat’s. It’s HILARIOUS. Am I wrong? In my opinion, there’s nothing funnier.

One of my favourite, personal failures of epic proportions, is what is now referred to as “The Grand Escalator Exodus of New York City”

Last year, I moved from New York to Toronto, by myself, by bus. So yes, every single one of my belongings came with me in two obscenely gigantic and embarrassing hot pink and Hawaiian flower-printed suitcases.

The bus I was taking was leaving from Penn Station, a huge train and bus exchange located midtown Manhattan. Needless to say, it was packed and incredibly busy.

After finally figuring out where to go (the place is HUGE), I discovered that in order to get there, I would have to get down what was quite possibly the world’s longest and most intimidating escalator.

I had come to a stop at the top of said escalator, briefly, before I realized that the increasing amount of people waiting behind me were getting impatient. I didn’t even think twice about the logistics of what I was about to do, I just realized I had to hurry, so I stepped onto the moving stairs of doom with one foot and pulled my bags on behind me.

Or rather, I tried to.

A diagram to aid in understanding the logistics of the scenario. (Or perhaps just confuse you more due to apparent lack of artistic skill.)

A diagram to aid in understanding the logistics of the scenario. (Or perhaps just confuse you more due to apparent lack of artistic skill.)

But the bags were too heavy and too big and before I could pull them on with me, my left foot was being carried down the escalator. As the space between my left and right foot (still at the top of the stairs) increased while I tried to figure out what on Earth was happening, I ended up sliding into the splits and being taken down without my bags.

I was stuck in this position for a good 30 seconds before my left foot reached the ground floor, and in this time, I was all but peeing myself laughing, split over the span of at least 10 steps with no way to get up. In between my fits of laughter I noticed the lady above me, dressed in a grey business blazer and skirt, carrying down one of my Hawaiian printed suitcases, looking absolutely horrified.

It came to my attention that practically everyone in Manhattan was staring at me, (which is saying something; spend even a month in that city and you become almost completely desensitized to strangeness) and felt as though I should let them know I would be alright. In between fits of laughter I managed to choke out, “I’m ok, I…I do ballet!”

Soon the entire first and second floor of Penn Station was laughing along with me, and when I finally reach the bottom I was greeted by cheers, clapping, and the two unlucky strangers who felt they were responsible for carrying down my bags after me. I thanked them profusely, and continued towards my gate, stumbling along with everything I owned, minus my dignity.

Seven hours later, with an additional seven hours left on the bus ride, I still wasn’t able to contain myself. As everyone tried to sleep I kept picturing the scenario in my head, laugh-crying to myself, and praying to every imaginable God that no one with a youtube account had filmed the debacle.

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