Halloween Report

Halloween 2014 has come and gone. This year not a single piece of candy is leftover. How did that happen? It wasn’t the kids in my building — it was the adults. I leave quality holiday candy in a basket hanging from my doorknob starting a few days before Halloween and, usually it’s still there for a few days after. There’s been some turnover in my neighbors and the days of finding “gifts” of other candies in the basket have been replaced by adults grabbing more than one mini Snickers bar or a couple of caramels. It’s an interesting development and another piece of evidence that Halloween is not kid-centric anymore. The grown ups were indulging in candy binges — just like kids!


The Annual Greenwich Village Halloween Parade was enormous! When I braved the crowds and craziness a little before 10pm, the parade was still making slow progress up Sixth Avenue with giant puppet floats, wild costumes and crowds behind miles of metal barriers. My own progress from East 12th Street to West 14th (for a Tango party) was very slow. It wasn’t just the sidewalks crowded with costumed celebrants that slowed my usual pace; it was the detours through police barricades and ‘holding pens’ with wait times before crossing the parade route. The cops were great! The NYPD uniformed officers displayed both patience and calm — no easy trick when you’re surrounded by most of the crowd seemed to be dressed as expressions of their Id — as opposed to their Ego.

My Medusa was more conceptual than obviously grotesque, with only three rubber snakes and many strands of curly ribbon forming a “nest of vipers” in my hair. (The Cat Woman at the Tango party said I looked like a present wrapped with ribbons. Oh, well…) The party also featured a Ninja Clown with an orange nose, Charlie Chaplain, Frida Kahlo & Diego Rivera, and three men who managed to become credible women! One, in gold glitter with a baby bump, looked like a pregnant Kardashian sister.

It wasn’t until I made my way home, a few hours later, that the scary aspects of Halloween spooked me. I’m comfortable walking alone in the city. Staying alert and noticing what other people are doing is an urban safety instinct, but Halloween challenges my usual ability to judge danger. Masks “mask” motivations and obscure visual cues. Since Halloween on a Friday night is one big party, most of the people on the street at 1am were walking in pairs or groups — and not alone, like me. Groups wearing demon masks take on the appearance of a “pack” on the prowl and make it difficult to determine if I’m “prey” or simply passing by like a ghost.

I pondered the importance of seeing the faces of strangers and how five happy, young, men walking from one place to another (perhaps from a bar to the subway station or from a friend’s apartment to a college dorm) could easily take on the aura of wild creatures hunting a weaker animal. The large person in a teddy bear suit did NOT look hug-able to me. And the couple, in scary costume,s having a drunken quarrel on a street corner, looked threatening in a way that they wouldn’t normally.

Disguises obscure reality in unpredictable ways and inspire flights of frightening fantasy — Halloween in a nutshell.


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  1. I would love to spend a Halloween in NYC! Mine consisted of closing the blinds and hoping my poor rescue dog wouldn’t totally freak out because of all the unusual commotion outside. Zoey made it, but just barely.

    • Candy Korman

      Poor doggy!
      I had a sign on my door — along with the basket of candies —instructing the kids NOT to ring my doorbell and explaining that the otherwise courageous cat is frightened by the doorbell. He’s getting old and I really didn’t want him running under the sofa repeatedly. The voices outside the door were OK. The doorbell is like siren to him. I guess Morse is a little like Zoey.

  2. I love the mask with the white eyebrows and moustache in the last picture. That should be my new profile picture.
    Glad you had a nice time Candy but sorry you found out the hard way what piggies some adults are.
    xxx Massive Hugs xxx

    • Candy Korman

      LOL… Venice is a city of masks. It’s wonderful! I went into that shop and just adored everything. But, as I don’t wear masks, and already have a few hanging in my apartment, my limited Euros were safe.

  3. Halloween was a bit odd. We expected to see all sorts of Elsa’s and Duck Dynasty characters and not a single one came to our door. If we had been playing a drinking game with it we would have found ourselves entirely sober by the end of the night.

    The neighborhood did fill up pretty well though. When we finally had to close up due to no candy, we still had some kids walking up our driveway.

    • Candy Korman

      What costume, or costume category, would have given you a better drinking party game? A friend told me he went to the Metropolitan Museum (Friday nights are late and have music it’s a great evening) and he was very disappointed in the 20-somethings as they were ALL vampires with blood drips on their faces and nothing much else. If he had a drinking game for vampires he’d still be recovering from his hangover. (And he’s generally a one beer guy… LOL)