Each year I fervently declare that Halloween is my favorite holiday. Like clockwork, the first chill hits the air and I am decked out in oversized sweaters and autumn colours. My mind becomes awash with orchards, pumpkin patches and costume ideas. It seems an incontestable fact that Halloween is the be-all and end-all of holidays.
That is until the morning of Nov. 1, when “somehow” Mariah Carey is singing me into a sugar plum-induced state of whimsy. I renounce the ghouls and ghosts for the spirit of Christmas.
A way to understand my relationship with these holidays is to imagine the proverbial romantic comedy plot of a love triangle. A distraught female lead has to choose between two guys who are completely different, but somehow both wonderful and amazing. I am the distraught female and Halloween is the guy who inevitably is left in the, excuse the word play, cold.
Halloween didn’t do anything wrong. It’s a fun time that causes butterflies in my stomach. I will always have a place for it in my heart. But Christmas just has that something extra I need. It’s not just Christmas, though. It’s the entire holiday season. When I briefly moved to Victoria, B.C. in the fall of 2012, it was the first time I was living away from my family and I practically clung to the holidays for a sense of familiarity. This tradition of enveloping myself in the season has only grown stronger over the years.
Having been born and raised in the United States, American Thanksgiving has always been the start to the season. As the school term becomes increasingly stressful around this time, the sense of joy and excitement brought on by the impending celebrations is a welcome relief.
Beyond my adoration for the feeling of the season is that for the sounds of the season. Hearing Bing Crosby croon over the airwaves brings back memories of my grandma singing the same tunes while baking in the kitchen. Passing train stations and hearing the cheerful sounds of families reunited for the holidays makes my heart burst. I find comfort in the voice of Judy Garland assuring me “from now on your troubles will be out of sight.” It is a special time of year.
I don’t have to completely denounce Halloween, though. Thanks to Tim Burton, the film ‘The Nightmare Before Christmas’ allows me to have my cake and eat it too.