I love Halloween. It’s the rare chance to embrace all the frights (guts! gore! death!) we usually sweep under the carpet, as well as a time to play out some fantasies. (And no, that doesn’t mean I’ll be dressing up as Sexy Cookie Monster this year.) And best of all? Ritualized extortion! When else can you demand treats, and then perform feats of mischief if the order isn’t met?
Unlike some holidays, Halloween wasn’t born in the conference room of a marketing department–it stems from the ancient Gaelic festival of Samhain which celebrated the end of the harvest season and the ensuing preparations for winter. The Gaels believed that at this time, the boundaries between the worlds of the living and the dead overlapped and the deceased could reach back into life and wreak havoc such with disease or ruined crops.
With our typical American chutzpah, however, we have steamrolled the more subtle attributes right out of the holiday for…lots and lots of candy. We spent nearly $2 billion dollars on the spooky sweet stuff last year. This year, more than 35 million pounds of candy corn alone will be produced. That is equal to nine billion pieces—enough to circle the moon nearly four times if placed end-to-end.
But our appetite doesn’t stop at miles of candy corn and a bagful of wax lips. Not even close. Our kids have developed a taste for the creepiest of treats conceivable. In twisted Halloween spirit, the following examples embrace the goriest, goopiest, grossest ideas that transcend what is usually deemed appropriate during the rest of the year. And although some of them are seriously cringe-inspiring, the creepiest part may simply be their ingredients…
Candy Blood Bags
Blood type: gross positive. Well, if adults can drink Bloody Marys, is liquid candy in a blood bag with an IV tube and side clamp really so wrong?
Organ Harvest Gummy Candies
Halloween was originally about the harvest, but I don’t think they meant the harvest of vital organs. For the cannibal in all of us; serve with a nice chianti.
A juicy gummy underbelly covered with a crunchy candy shell, just like a real cockroach. The ‘crunchy’ part? Not so appealing to me–but better than the bacon and cheese flavored (real) Cricket Snacks, for sure.
I, for one, am seriously skeeved out by used Band-Aids. Just. So. Gross. So it’s no surprise that the ol’ Gummy Boo Boos Candy Scabs make my skin crawl, no, they make my skin want to get up and run, quickly, into the woods. Oh, and they are sticky too, “just like real bandages.” Bonus points for authenticity.
Box of Boogers
Tangy gummy boogers that look and feel real. Just…yum.
Ear Wax Gummy Candy
Q-tips not included.
Liquid Candy Urine Sample
Please take the sample cup to the bathroom and…slurp out the candy urine.
White Chocolate Maggots
One year I hid my Easter candy in the garage so that it would outlast my sisters’–only, I was very young, and hid all my hard-boiled eggs along with the chocolate bunnies. Suffice to say, these white chocolate maggots bring to mind the swarming ‘surprise’ that accompanied the eager retrieval of my basket. I’ve had enough holiday larval confections, but that’s just me. And these do come in a reusable tin, after all. Tasty.