47 Thoughts to “Open Thread: Happy Halloween”

  1. Gainesville Resident

    Don’t really plan on doing this today – but Merrifield Garden Center has Halloween activities during the day today and even some Halloween contest for dogs – grand prize is a $50 gift card. Not going to get a costume for my dog however. I don’t think she’d wear it very long for one thing. Wondering how many children will come by tonight in the new neighborhood – at least all the ones on our street but possibly many more from nearby streets. Have to go buy some more candy today just in case.

  2. M-H in Drag

    Why thank you. I think I have this figured out.

    It was far easier for me to switch email accounts than it was avatars. As Slowpoke found out, they don’t change when you want them too.

  3. LMAO! I love your costume, MH!!!

  4. Poor Richard

    Yippes!! Was scared a day early – the Dow down 250 points!!!
    (Not sure how to dress as a 401K, but know you would frighten more than
    a few folks).

  5. Lafayette

    I getting crap from my family for NOT having chocolate to hand out. We only had 30 kids last year, and I think it’ll be even less this year with the number of sick kids.

  6. What do you mean by “yard signs”? Are we voting for Frankenstein this Tuesday? I’m all for a write-in at this point.

  7. Why do you think so few, Lafayette? Older community?

    One year I froze the candy.

    Poor Richard, you make an excellent point. I refuse to think we are going through that again. I am no where close to being back to the way things were. I doubt if that will ever happen. The past week has been just horrible. How about a sack cloth and a tin cup and write 401k across the sack cloth you are wearing?

  8. Poor Richard

    M-H – was thinking tattered clothing covered by red ink/blood.

    (Have heard Wall Street vampires are running out of victims and
    are pushing the Fed to open blood banks for “stimulus”).

  9. M-H in Drag

    Nothing would surprise me. Let me know what you decide on.

    Maybe feed cloth will become the new egyptian cotton.

    This has been very painful. Thursday was just a teaser. I hurt badly on Friday. I stopped looking. It was making me sick.

  10. Lafayette

    Moon, being in an older community with quite a few seniors/original owners plays a huge part in the decline of kids. Of course, we did have tons of vacant houses a couple of years ago. Last year there were still many vacant houses.

  11. M-H in Drag

    All the kids are grown. I guess townhouse communities get hit the worst. More bank for your buck. The young howlers will be over after raiding their ‘hood.

  12. Slowpoke Rodriguez

    Bye-Bye, Scozzafava!! Hey, Libs!…….BOO!!

  13. A kindergartner pointed out graffiti on a stop sign earlier this week. I called it in to City Public Works and they abated it in one day, and I pointed it out to the kindergartner the next morning. Why did they remove it so fast?

    It was the word for “He Who Must Not Be Named.” That’s the only thing I can figure out!

  14. M-H in Drag

    Slowpoke, are you that much of a political animal that you care what happens in NY? Are you from that area? I thought you told me a different state.

    Cindy, is that a Harry Potter reference?

  15. Slowpoke Rodriguez

    @M-H in Drag
    It’s symbolic!

  16. Witness Too

    Who is “He who must not be named?” Satan? Is it just me or are Halloween constumes getting more and more disturbing. This has been on my mind walking around seeing all these macabre costumes and lawn zombies and devil constumes: why do we encourage our children to celebrate death, mutilation, and horrible monsters on a holiday similar to Easter and Christmas?

  17. Slowpoke Rodriguez

    CindyB :
    It was the word for “He Who Must Not Be Named.” That’s the only thing I can figure out!

    Corey Stewart?

  18. Lafayette

    The H-man from WWII?
    C’mon Cindy, don’t leave us hangin’.

  19. Twinad

    I have a ton of candy this year because we had a TON of kids last year. That’s weird, because I don’t live that far from Lafayette. 2 years ago we had a noticeable drop off in the number of kids, but last year they were back in force and I think there will be even more this year. It seems like our neighborhood is getting a lot of families that lost “the big house” and had to downsize. Last year we had a lot of vacant houses, but not as many as the year before and this year almost all of them have been sold or rented. There were at least 5 houses in our vicinity that were foreclosures that sat empty for 18 months before they were even put on the market. Others got to market faster. Let’s see…so far today I’ve already had a 100 Grand bar and a pack of peanut M & M’s! How much more will be devoured before sundown?! I hope not much more.

  20. Twinad

    He Who Must Not Be Named is Valdemort from the Harry Potter series. I read an article about a graffiti artist that was putting that all over the place and the police were stumped as to the meaning. One officer went home and was telling his wife about it and one of his kids overheard and clued him in!

  21. Lafayette

    Twin, hey nice to see you. I know you don’t live that far from me, and do think number of kids vary from year to year and for a variety of reasons. One thing that’s different up here we have several townhouse communities, and like Moon a lot more bang for your buck. We used to go all the way down to BenLomond all the way up to townhouses next to the barn. I don’t think kids today are willing to do all of that leg work. I don’t think we have any kids past 8pm that past three years. We used to stay out to about 9 it seemed. There’s mall trick or treating and Trick or Trunk at several places in the area.

  22. @Witness Too
    I can’t talk. My 11 year old is the Grim Reaper this year. My other gal is a Goth Girl.

    Weird having Valdermort in graffiti. I guess if it were my generation, we would have written Darth Vader.

  23. Twinad :He Who Must Not Be Named is Valdemort from the Harry Potter series. I read an article about a graffiti artist that was putting that all over the place and the police were stumped as to the meaning. One officer went home and was telling his wife about it and one of his kids overheard and clued him in!

    Bingo, but it’s Voldemort.

    Oh, no….

  24. Emma

    Trick or treat!

    Not many kids come around the Woodhouse home on Halloween anymore, and the Woodhouse children finally declared they are finished with trick-or-treating forever.


  25. Gainesville Resident

    Someone in my new neighborhood told me they got a ton of kids last year. But they live down in the more established part of the neighborhood and even as of last year those houses had been built for 2 years. My way is still a bit desolate, so will be interesting to see. The road leading in is not well lit at night as no houses have been built there, and then there’s various construction equipment scattered about that driving the car you have to dodge to get through. Don’t know how many kids from other streets will make the effort. Although there’s a path through the trees from a cul-de-sac adjacent to mine, and that’s easy as I cut through there with my dog often – so I think kids from that street may make it here. Just to be safe, bought a few more bags of candy at Wegmans this morning.

    Went to Merrifield in Gainesville – today and tomorrow is their Fall Festival although today at 1 PM was their dog Halloween contest. Did not enter my dog as had no costume, but 52 dogs were entered and they gave out a lot of prizes. Some unusual costumes for the dogs (and some owners dressed up too). They also have hayrides, moon bounce rides for the kids, petting zoo, etc.

  26. M-H in Drag

    How did the dogs all look? Mine tear sweaters off each other so I am not investing in costumes for the ingrates.

  27. M-H in Drag

    I rest my case about all the grafitti NOT being gang related.

    Its all too easy to develop red circle mentality and assume it is gang related. I feel cerain the bike and crocs with socks would be on the move if any such thing were posted on my end of town. Geek alert!!!

  28. Witness Too

    Oh that’s funny. “He who shall not be named” stumped the police and the blog both!

  29. Poor Richard

    Taliban Bob and his sidekick “Cooch” get will wear their resonable moderate mask
    three more days and then a real Trick and no Treat for Virginians. Boo!

  30. M-H in Drag

    Whhhhooooaaaaa there Witness. I asked if it was a Harry Potter reference. Not totally stumped here.

    Poor Richard, are you suggesting that there will be a great unveiling, as it were?

    I agree. It will be all trick and no treat once the band of merry thieves cuts loose.

  31. M-H in Drag

    No tricksters, as far as the eye can see. I guess the candy will get frozen.

  32. Lafayette

    We’ve only had 3 kids. One of them was a grandchild of an old neighbor.
    I’m with Poor Richard a trick indeed and no treat for Virginians! boo and boo-hoo.

  33. IWK Manassas

    75 kids so far and still counting…. running out of candy… They come in big groups, or as my youngest says, “Another flock of people is here!!”

  34. Tell him its a herd. We haven’t had many. Maybe 15-20. It picked up the past half hour.

  35. Lafayette

    I think it’s a done deal with 50 kids this year. It was a nice night to be outside. I think WestGate gets more kids than neighboring Sudley because we have street lights.
    Trick or Treat!!

  36. We got 20 children at the door, made a candy run to the CVS, and now there’s no more. Usually we only get a handful! We’ll take the rest of the candy to church tomorrow.

  37. Gainesville Resident

    M-H in Drag :
    How did the dogs all look? Mine tear sweaters off each other so I am not investing in costumes for the ingrates.

    I don’t think my dog would keep a costume on either. Some were pretty clever – the best one I thought was the chiuahua dressed as a lobster and sitting on a dinner plate! The dog that won the grand prize was a pug that had a Dracula costume on. There were other prizes given out (scariest, funniest, most unique, etc.).

    This evening, we only had about 15 children come by – most of which were those we knew on our street. A few from the adjacent court cut through the path through the woods separating us from that court. I would think no one from the other streets wanted to go through the dark area where no houses are, that is also full of consruction equipment, no sidewalks, and the street is a bit muddy. Maybe next year will get more once a lot of houses on that street are built, which the builder claims will be within the next 6 months.

  38. Lafayette, you make a good point about those street lights you all have over there.

    My daughter said a lot of people weren’t handing out candy tonight. We maybe had 10 groups come to the door. There were no flocks or herds though. maybe 6 at the most per group.

    Thats neat that pugs can be Dracula. The only one I know is an Angel.

  39. Lafayette

    There were only 4 houses out of 30 on block handing out candy. I went to visit my neighbors on Damscus and they had way more kids over there, but more houses were giving out candy on their block. Enjoyed a nice visit around the fire pit with 5 others that grew up within a couple blocks of each other in WestGate.

    We did have some “stray cats” that came to door for candy about 10, and they were NOT teenagers. I was really surprised to hear the doorbell ring.

    Gainesville, did you take any pictures at Merrifield? I would love to see the Pug as Dracula. I did see a picture of a black pug that was a spider and it was awesome.

  40. Gainesville Resident

    Lafayette – Unfortunately I realized when we got there I didn’t bring my camera. Merrifield was taking pictures though – so maybe they’ll have some up on their website in a day or two including the winner. They had a lot of other stuff going on there – actually today (Sunday) it continues – lots of things for the kids including hayrides, petting zoo, moonbounce, etc.

    The last activity we had was around 7:45 PM – then saw our neighbor and walked with him down to one of the other neighbors and talked with them for awhile. My dog scored some Halloween treats at the other neighbor’s house.

  41. I was going to crank my firepit up until it rained. I was even going to burn my torches. Then I lost interest. Daylight saving time is over so I will be depressed until March 14, 2010. Bear with me.

    From about.com

    Daylight Saving Time was instituted in the United States during World War I in order to save energy for war production by taking advantage of the later hours of daylight between April and October. During World War II the federal government again required the states to observe the time change. Between the wars and after World War II, states and communities chose whether or not to observe Daylight Saving Time. In 1966, Congress passed the Uniform Time Act which standardized the length of Daylight Saving Time


  42. You know what’s weird? That some states don’t do daylight savings. I thought it was some kind of federal law or something.

  43. Arizona didn’t used to, except on the Navajo Nation.

    Also Indiana didn’t used to. They do now.

  44. Gainesville Resident

    After 1966, when the Uniform Time Act was passed, local exemptions were allowed from Daylight Savings Time.

    A good article about this is at the US Naval Observatory’s site – http://aa.usno.navy.mil/faq/docs/daylight_time.php

  45. Great Britain has really cracked down on texting while driving. They are treating it the same as drunk driving if one is killed as a result of someone doing it. Those convicted end up in prison.

    Our general assembly needs to really tightened up on this law. What was passed last year was wimpy. It never occurred to me that people did this. After the law last year, I have seen it more and more. GEEEZ, just give me a drunk driver.

  46. GainesvilleResident

    Texting while driving is just as dangerous as drunk driving, so seems like what the British are doing makes sense. We should follow their lead on this. Statistically speaking, there’s probably a lot more people who text while driving than drunk drivers, so it stands to reason there’s probably a lot more accidents caused by texters as a result. I see it all the time on my commute back and forth to work, along with other crazy behaviors (newspaper spread over steering wheel for example is a common one I see). I know commuting is tedious and boring, but if you want the news turn on the radio like I do!

  47. Opinion

    I like it (cracking down on texting by treating it the same as drunk driving. When you think about it, texting while driving is driving while impared. Frankly, I would like to see talking on the phone (holding it up to your ear) while driving in the same category.

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