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M. Spector M. Spector's picture
M. Spector M. Spector's picture

[url=http://www.canada.com/health/story.html?id=5632669]Beware of irradiated candy![/url]

CHESAPEAKE, Va -- Creating a colourful pile of wrappers, the medical centre technician upends a basket of Skittles, Hershey bars, Twizzlers and other candy onto the bed of an x-ray machine.

Suzanne Mailler is demonstrating a procedure that will be repeated scores of times on Monday evening at the Chesapeake, Virginia medical clinic Patient First.

Across America, paranoid or justifiably cautious parents will bring in their children's trick-or-treat goodies for screening. Their fear is that the candy given to their children by strangers will be laced with glass, metal or other foreign objects.

Community relations manager Ian Slinkman said Patient First is offering the free service at 37 centres in Virginia, Maryland and Pennsylvania...


I'm dressed as a Cardinal.

Catchfire Catchfire's picture

Last year I went as this guy:

This year I'm putting a mustache on the wee spark and gaming the neighbourhood for candy.

Maysie Maysie's picture

I say this one is a close second.



Timebandit Timebandit's picture

Last year, Ms T went as a pirate and we got a pirate hat for Luna as well.  She already has the patch on her eye, after all.  We kept getting stopped for photos, they were so cute!

X-rayed candy, though - good grief.  I am nowhere near that paranoid.  I'm more worried about excited kids running across the street without looking for traffic.


Seeing as the whole poisoned candy thing was a complete myth, I am not surprised.



Our street wasn't too busy - not surprising since we live on kind of a main street instead of a side street.  We only had about 10 knocks on the door, so maybe 20 kids.  radiorahim way overbought the candy (surely not on purpose!) so I've been giving out huge handfuls once we realized that practically no one was coming by.  We have four jack-o-lanterns (two of which I carved when I got home tonight, and two carved by my kid yesterday).

The best part about carving pumpkins is my yearly treat - toasted pumpkin seeds!  Recipe time? :)  I rinsed the seeds of three pumpkins in water and drained.  Then put a splash of olive oil and some dashes of hot pepper sauce and mixed it all up.  Spread them all out on a cookie sheet, salted them to taste, then put them in a 350 degree oven until browned (which took quite a while).  I took them out regularly to stir them so they wouldn't burn.

Strangest moment of the night: A middle-aged guy older than either of us came by trick-or-treating by himself wearing a wig.  He said, "I know I'm a little old, but..."  What the heck.  I gave him candy.  I'm a good sport about the age of trick-or-treaters, especially when I live in a low-traffic area.  I also got a group of teenaged boys who were wearing costumes and who towered over me at the door.  They got candy too.  We only got three really little ones, and they were adorable.

Clearly, we have to move to a side street!

P.S. Those dog costumes are awesome.  No way in h...allowe'en our cat would put up with an outfit like those...

Maysie Maysie's picture

Michelle wrote:
 P.S. Those dog costumes are awesome.  No way in h...allowe'en our cat would put up with an outfit like those...

Challenge accepted.







Hannah went to her friends place to trick or treat around there with her friend's mom.

I know there was a trick or treat gap between my youngest and taking Hannah around, but this is the first time I can remember not either doing the shell out all night or taking someone around.

Meg and I divied up the shell out duties, but we didn't have to.  We had hardly any kids at the door. 

I've notice over the last ten or so years that there are more and more dark houses.  More empty nesters, fewer kids so less people participate which means kids go to other streets which leads to fewer houses participating.......

I got a feeling that my street has reached some kind of tipping point.

there were, however, lots of roving teens not trick or treating, but costumed.  I passed a big park picking up Hannah, and notice a large police presence in and around the park.  I think they either pre-empted a party, or broke one up.



The place I lived before moving in with radiorahim, I got tons of trick-or-treaters.  But I was renting a flat in a house on a side street with quite expensive houses, so that was probably a perfect storm - kids see a neighbourhood street like that and figure the loot will be great there. 

But rr is telling me that he used to get a lot more trick-or-treaters at this place in previous years - fewer and fewer every year.  Maybe parents are wimping out on trick-or-treating due to urban legend scare stories.  Or perhaps it's just part of the whole parenting fashion of tethering your children to your hip on a 10 foot leash until they're 17 years old or else they're going to die a horrible death due to your lack of supervision.  I don't know.  Our street isn't THAT busy traffic-wise.

Maysie: Can you imagine our kitty in one of those get-ups?  Ha!  You'd have to catch him first...

Regarding empty-nesters - that's interesting.  Most people I know who don't have kids, or whose kids are adults, or are with the other parent (like mine is tonight) still give out candy.  I was chatting with a neighbour across the street earlier tonight.  I came out to admire our jack-o-lanterns in the dark, and she called across to ask whether I'd had any kids yet.  It was past 7.  I said no.  And then we saw my first trick-or-treaters walking down the street right as I said it.

I think Toronto also starts later than smaller cities and towns.  Everywhere else I've lived in Ontario, the kids start coming around 5 or 5:30.  Here in Toronto, even when I've lived on busier Hallowe'en streets, the kids don't come out until at least 6 or 6:30.  Commuting time, I guess.


We actually passed some Jesusweeners driving across town to the relatives. 

I knew because the place they had their little table set up was in front of a religious school and none of them had costumes on. They also didn't have any light, or a neon cross or anything. It was just kind of sad looking. 

Of course we didn't stop. Sorry, but candy takes precedence over pity cases.


Timebandit Timebandit's picture

We got quite a few trick or treaters - not a record number, considering what a beautiful night it's been.  But the door to door is alive and well here in the Queen City.  Lots of little kids with parents, but around 9 or 10 years old they tend to strike out on their own.

Ms T just arrived home with her best buddy carrying more candy than I bought in the first place - probably a combination of deadly cute (they're 10, so still smallish) and motivation.  Ms B had a fun night roaming completely unsupervised with her two good friends - not much candy, but they're just on the cusp of being too old for trick or treat. 

I don't think we've got any bibles, but I haven't got to the bottom of Ms T's bag - I am already eating her chips, though!  Mwah-ha-ha-ha-ha!!!!!


We live in a townhouse complex and had 127 children at the door last night. Our 14 year old has taken over handing out the treats and he had a blast. Ms. C. took our 14 year old around the neighbourhood. They were quite cold when they arrived home 45 minutes later. We had our last customer at 7:30. 

P.S. I was listening to Careeras in the living room and watching the young ones stream to our door.


Yeah, back in my church days, I heard and read suggestions like carving crosses in pumpkins and having "alternative" parties at churches for kids.  Our church didn't hold those kind of alternative events - I think most of us just did Hallowe'en.  But more fundy ones than ours did.  And I did know one or two folks who weren't comfortable with Hallowe'en for religious reasons, although I don't remember whether they did anything about it like do alternatives or hand out tracts or whatever. 

It was a real eye-roller to me even when I was religious - I've always loved Hallowe'en.  Our place when I was growing up was always one of the "cool" places, where my mom dressed up to answer the door, decorated the yard, etc.  And she did that long after I was an adult.  Although I don't know if she does it so much now, just because she lives in a rural village and doesn't get many trick-or-treaters.

Timebandit, it's not Bibles I'd be looking for - it's Chick tracts I'd be considering the real treat.  Those are hilarious!  There's a little church down the street from us that gives away bread to the neighbourhood.  They're very nice folks, but the couple of times I've received bread, they've come with a Chick tract.  I couldn't believe it - I didn't think anyone used those anymore.  I figured they were a kitschy joke even among fundies these days!

So now it's the day after Hallowe'en, and the airwaves are filled with advice to parents on "how to handle all that candy".  Another eye-roller for me.  When I was a kid, there was no debate - the prevailing wisdom was to let them gorge for a few days and then it's gone.  It's once a year.  Good grief.  Now they're talking about parents trying strategies like "trading candy for other stuff" so the kids won't eat it.  Undecided  Whatever.

Edited to add: I didn't realize that Smith's "Jesusweeners" was referring to a specific group!  Wow. 

Jesusweeners give away Bibles

One of them says that they give kids postcards that say "Jesus Loves You" and the kids can choose whether or not to accept it.  The problem is, their souls will be damned to eternal hell if they're given the choice and they choose wrong!  How cruel!  At least if they didn't give the poor kids that postcard, then when they eventually reach the pearly gates, they will have the excuse that they hadn't heard the "good news" yet!  ;)


I love Hallowe'en.  We only had about 30 kids come to the door, but they seem to like our skulls, tombstones, creepy carved pumpkins and the scary moans and howls coming from the front hall closet (Hallowe'en soundtrack CD).  It would be nice to have more kids coming to the door, but our neighbourhood has mostly middle aged and older people so the small turnout isn't really a surprise.

Miz H went out with top hat, cane and tap shoes, and went through several incarnations of makeup (werewolf, zombie, zombie-ghost) before deciding on a simple white face with black cat paw prints on each cheek.  Way cute ...

I'm enjoying these last few Hallowe'ens as much as possible.  Miz H is our youngest and last child, and will be too old for trick or treating in a few years. Regardless, as long as there are kids out on Hallowe'en night, I'll be handing out sugary tooth-rotting goodness to all who come.

Northern Shoveler Northern Shoveler's picture

We had about 60 kids at our door.  We've lived in a 90 unit coop with mostly town houses for over a decade.  A decade ago it was closer to a hundred kids then a few years ago it was 15 to 20.  The last 5 years has seen a lot of new young families move into our community so most of the kids last night where the same ones I see playing around our neighbourhood. 

We also have a few members who are really into fireworks and have all the proper tickets for real fireworks displays.  We had our annual 40 minute awesome fireworks display that is unrivalled locally. The Social Committee seems to have no problem getting money when they ask for donations to buy fireworks so lots are bought.



@ Michelle

Well if you like Chick tracts (and they were right up there with horror movies when I was a kid) you can find them all online. 


And I just went to their site and see that it has had a major spruce-up. Not surprising given the state of things nowadays. No, I don't think they see it as kitsch at all. I expect you get thrown into the big pit of fire by the giant guy with no face and burned alive for that.




The Bacchanae as a kitten




Timebandit Timebandit's picture

Sounds very cute, Rebecca!  Ms T was the Queen of Hearts (red, black and white dress with hearts, tiara with heart, beehive hairdo and white face with hearts on cheeks and lips), Ms B was Charlie Chaplin.  This was the first year we didn't accompany anyone - it felt a little strange. 

We have a giant spider on our front door and another sound-activated one next to it that climbs a string and drops on trick or treaters,, skull-shaped candles in the window flanking Ms T's model of the Death of Rats (from the Discworld series) and four jack-o-lanterns.  Given that the front porch is halfway through some construction, it looked run-down enough not to need any more decoration.  I think we pass muster. 

@Michelle - nope, no tracts this year.  We've gotten the odd one over the years.  If you think about it, though, Halloween is appropriate for silly, scary stories, eh?

Maysie Maysie's picture

Bacchus the cat taco is priceless! Especially the look on the cat's face.

"Someone's going to pay for this. Someday when you least expect it, I'll be there."

And wow the baby has grown a lot since I last saw her.


We will have to meet up, maybe with RR and michelle and hae a visit. OG too


Works for me, Bacchus. :)

BTW, those are adorable pictures of the little one!


She wouldnt let go of her bag and was obsessive about making sure every bit of candy went into it

M. Spector M. Spector's picture
M. Spector M. Spector's picture

M. Spector wrote:

Best dog costume ever!





[url=http://www.ksat.com/-Star-Wars-dog-costumes-sweep-the-internet/-/478556/... Wars dog costumes sweep the internet[/url]

Now Volkswagen has made what they call a [url=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6ntDYjS0Y3w]"teaser" for a Super Bowl commercial[/url] with a Star Wars theme, and right at the end of it they have a cheap knockoff of the now-viral Italian Greyhound AT-AT costume shown above. It's caused some controversy because the owner of the above dog who [url=http://dogblog.dogster.com/2011/10/10/the-best-doggie-halloween-costume-... the costume[/url] was never consulted or acknowledged by the creators of the commercial - they just ripped off her idea. (Of course, she ripped off Star Wars in the first place, but still).

ETA: Check out [url=https://www.facebook.com/pages/Bones-Mello-the-AT-AT-Dog/225465154180747...'s facebook page[/url]


Is it really that time again?

[url=https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/October_31#Births]To start, let's see who has a freaky birthday[/url]

Happy Hallowe'en everyone!Smile

alan smithee alan smithee's picture

Interesting that that monster Jimmy Savile would be born on Halloween. Kind of ironic,really. Thanks for the list.


A movie crew has taken over our street today, filming a scene for a TV adaptation of Stephen King's horror novella 'The Mist'. 


How cool is that for Hallowe'en ambience?! 

Timebandit Timebandit's picture

Wow, that's cool!

This will be the first year since I've had kids that we won't have any trick or treaters in the house. Thing 2 is hosting a party, though, just a few friends. We discovered a closed-off part of our basement when we replaced some flooring - built of stone, full 8 feet deep, under the sun room. We put in a trap door and are in the process of building a wine cellar - so the kids are dressing it for Halloween and will play spooky games there, eat cupcakes, pizza and candy and will watch a scary movie.  :)

Thing 2 is a ghost today - wearing my old grad dress, and it fits her perfectly. Sigh.


Our first year of truly free-range kids. #1 is going as a loonie (the coin) and #2 is Chtulhu for President. 

We are off to see our new mayor and council sworn in at 6 pm.





Mr. Magoo

We discovered a closed-off part of our basement when we replaced some flooring - built of stone, full 8 feet deep, under the sun room.

OMG, I'm so jelly.

Thing 2 is a ghost today - wearing my old grad dress, and it fits her perfectly. Sigh.

Even the big boxy shoulders?  "I'm the ghost of the 1980's... BOO!"

Timebandit Timebandit's picture

Ha! I was ahead of my time - sweetheart neckline with barely off the shoulder sleeve, cascade ruffles down the back. In white organza, perfect ghosty dress! We added some tattery gauze to make it look more ghostly.

Mr. Magoo

While I pride myself on being the only heterosexual man on the planet who knows what a peplum is, I did have to google "sweetheart neckline".  But now I know, and I'm even stronger for it.

Timebandit Timebandit's picture

:D The "dungeon" looks awesome, too. They rigged up a skeleton and some candles - apparently there will be some ouija boarding later on.

Mr. Magoo

Can I just say again, though... you found a whole ROOM under your freakin' house?  I'm glad your kidlets can squeeze some creepy out of it tonight, but for the other 364 days of the year I'm picturing Man Cave.

Timebandit Timebandit's picture

Yeah, it's pretty cool. The main floor hardwood was shot in this old fixer-upper when we moved in, so we pulled up the floors for new flooring. There's a sunroom on the side of the house - since the basement wall on that side had no passage except a narrow gap under the joists, we assumed it would be a crawl space. When the floor came up, we discovered a full basement, same Tyndall stone construction as the rest of the house, with a dirt floor and a big pile of 100+ yr old beer and whiskey bottles. So we built a ladder and trap door to get in and out. The guy has evened out the floor and put some base down for flooring, and it will be a cellar for wine and his home brewed mead. :)


wow congratulations.

went trick or treating with a friend's little girl tonight. my old offspring dressed as Harley Quinn took her to the doors. 

been a decade since i was out and about trick or treating.

they're all soooooo cute.

one house even gave out play doh minis not candy. hope it's a trend to catch on at least a little.


Timebandit Timebandit's picture

We had some real cuties come to the door tonight, too. So much fun! Some really creative costumes, too.