I live in a house in Marin County, California, the first “house” I’ve lived in since leaving my parents’ home in New Jersey after graduating from college. So I don’t know what it’s like in other “neighborhoods,” because I’ve never lived in one. Apartment buildings, yes, many of them. Seven different flats in New York City, two in Los Angeles, and one in San Diego.
But the suburbs are different, at least it feels to me, and never so much as around Halloween. For the past week, in our house, we have thought of, discussed, and dreamed about, nothing besides this: Costumes, trick-or-treat strategies to maximize the candy haul, and the order in which the eventual loot will be consumed.
This year, again, we have been “boo’d” and are “boo-ing” others. If “boo’ing” is not a tradition in your neighborhood, you might want to consider introducing it. Last night, I laughed as hard as I ever have in my life, as Olivia, Mateo, and I, under cover of night, “boo’d” a friend who lives a few blocks away, and then “got away clean.” To “boo” someone, you need only a small bag full of goodies, a ghost of any kind, and a copy of this poem. Happy Halloween!
You have been Boo’d!
The Phantom Ghost has come to call.
To leave the goodies, sweets and all.
To avoid falling under the Curse,
You must follow this Halloween verse.
First, post the ghost where easily seen
And leave it up til Halloween.
This will keep haunting ghosts away.
Be sure to hang it, don’t delay.
Make two treats, two ghosts and two notes like this.
Deliver them to neighbors who have been missed.
Don’t let them see you, get away clean.
And then they’ll have Boo’ed Ghosts to be seen.
You will only have one day to prevent the spell.
Make sure there are no Ghosts when you ring the bell.
Deliver it when dark, when there is no light
Ring the doorbell and run, stay out of sight.
And last, but not least, mind the condition
Don’t break this age-old neighborhood tradition.
Have fun, be sneaky, and don’t be seen
And spread the joy of Halloween.