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…