Thursday 13 October 2016

Those 10 Things You Didn't Know About Halloween

Ah, it comes earlier every year, doesn't it? Already, it seems, the shops are full of pumpkins and the screams of the damned, and we know Halloween is nearly upon us.

But few know the true history of Halloween. What are those secrets of Halloween that have been forgotten?

1. Halloween was invented by the ancient Aztecs. Every 31 October they would kick their enemies' heads around their cities and light lamps in the skulls of revered ancestors. In later years these traditions were replaced by footballs and pumpkins respectively.

2. The Catholic Church, having persuaded the Aztecs to stop being such heathens by killing them all, brought the use of punkies and footballs back to Europe, where they spread alongside tobacco. Although newsagents had to stop selling pumpkins in packs of 20 as the shelves kept collapsing.

3. When modern children have a kick-about or carve a punkie, they therefore have no idea that they are metaphorically booting that big lad in Year 7's head around, or making a traditional use of Aunt Sophie's cranium. In this way the evil ways of the past are unknowingly carried into our children's lives in the guise of innocent games.

4. Bobbing for apples is a recreation of the ancient Babylonian method of execution, that involved shoving the criminal's head into a bucket of water and then throwing apples at his head. It was a slow death, and one that got a lot of water on the carpet.

5. On Halloween this year the spirits will walk from midnight until dawn. Except in Surrey where, due to the ongoing dispute between Southern Rail and the RMT, they've been drafted in to run a skeleton service.

6. "Trick or Treat" is a degraded folk memory of the invasion of Celtic  Britain by the Saxons. The blond-haired invaders would go from house to house demanding mead and other delicacies. And then burn the Celts' houses down anyway.

7. The equivalent of the foolish rozzer burnt in a Wicker Man at Mayday is called the "Trump". The "Trump" is selected as the most implausible and aggressive boor in the village. He is made to stand on the village green telling lies until, as his life force is sucked out and his body becomes transparent, everyone can see through him. In Mexico he retains his ancient Catholic title, "Murifex Maximus."

8. Skeleton staff, geddit.

9. When organising a "Light Party" some liberal churches may hold them on 1 November, so the kids can celebrate Halloween as well.

10. This year's most popular Halloween masks are Seumas Milne and the formerly disgraced former former minister, Liam Fox. Don't have nightmares.

1 comment :

  1. When I was a kid we used to hollow out swedes until someone suggested we use pumpkins so as not to fall foul of the Human Rights Act


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