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Make New Year’s Halloween Again

I wasn’t going to post a blog for the changing of the year, but then on the 2nd I realized I had already written one that I had forgotten about. I debated waiting until next year to post it, but let’s be realistic. If I forgot about it a week after I wrote it, am I really going to remember it next year? No. No I am not. Sure, we have technology and I could set any number of reminders, but I don’t think many people are reading this anyway, so I might as well just throw it out there. If you were planning to make your New Year’s plans based on my blog, many apologies. You could set yourself a reminder to read it again next year. 🙂

Some people like to celebrate New Year’s with fireworks, champagne, and kisses at midnight. Or maybe there’s a resolution you’ve been saving up, because who wants to better themselves on any of the other 364 days that come around each year?

Sure, these things have their place, but do you know what would really make this holiday special? Costumes. And ghosts.

Yes, I know Halloween is over until October, but does it really have to be? Let’s face it. Half the things people wear on New Year’s Eve are pretty close to being costumes already. Or, were you going to wear those shiny pants and sequined top to work next Wednesday? No? Didn’t think so. And where did that guy even find a diaper and bonnet that fit him? Good thing he’s drinking so much, otherwise he’d be freezing.

See…basically Halloween.

So go ahead and wear a costume. Throw on some cat ears and a tail with your leopard-print outfit. Put on some antlers and greenery, you beautiful pagan god or goddess. And who cares if there are three different versions of Father Time and Baby New Year at the party? Make yours steampunk. Or zombify it. Get creative. The ghosts will love it.

That’s right. The ghosts.

Ghosts LOVE winter. Why wouldn’t they? It’s dark. So dark. At least, in many parts of the world (apologies if you’re reading this from the southern hemisphere). In some places, it’s not even that light when the sun is out, because on top of the shortened days, it’s also cloudy most of the time. I’m in Ohio right now, and when I wrote this originally, I couldn’t remember the last time I had seen the sun or a blue sky. The weather hasn’t been great for nature photography or other outdoor activities, but the ghosts are loving it. It’s like summer vacation, but with cold weather. And, once you don’t have a body, who cares about the cold?

The ghosts may begin their party on All Hallows Eve, but that’s just the start. The shortest day of the year is the winter solstice, around the 21st of December. That’s much closer to New Year’s than to Halloween. The ghosts are definitely still here…assuming they ever leave at all.

So, what do we do about it? You could panic. That’s always fun. Bust out the sage, or call a priest, or whatever it is you do when you’re pretending you can fight something you can’t see. But I prefer a kinder, more inclusive approach. After you kiss your lover, or random stranger, at midnight, take a moment to send a loving thought to those who are no longer with us. That alcohol you’re guzzling with your friends and loved ones? Pour a glass for the spirits of the departed. And please, call an Uber, or Lyft, or friend so you don’t join the departed too soon.

Of course, there’s always the option to use this time of darkness to communicate with the dead. Perhaps your new New Year’s traditions should include dowsing rods or a Ouija board.

No matter how small or how elaborate the gesture, I’m sure the ghosts will appreciate it.

And since it IS the season for resolutions, keep in mind you have a whole year to let the spirits know you’re thinking of them. You can always resolve to make this coming year as spooky as possible.

 

I certainly hope you do.

 

Do you have a not-so-traditional New Year’s tradition? I’d love to hear about it in the comments!

White Tail in the Snow
Keep winter creepy AND cute by hanging out with the wildlife in your local cemetery.

Keep Christmas Creepy, My Friends

By now, everyone knows Christmas is based on pagan traditions. You’re most likely even pretty familiar with Krampus by now. Thanks internet!

Of course, there are probably already half a billion blogs floating around about all the creepy Christmas traditions that so many people have forgotten about, so I’m not going to write another one. But you definitely should google it. It’s a great rabbit hole. However, if you can’t handle an internet time suck right now, because Christmas chaos and such, I still recommend at least reading this article from Smithsonian that talks about the history of telling ghost stories during this time of year. Yay ghost stories!

In any case, what I really want to talk about is how we can bring back the original spookiness of the season. Sure, you could sit around and tell ghost stories like they did before TV, but let’s be honest. Most people under 30 aren’t going to listen unless you record it and upload it to YouTube first.

So, how do we make Christmas creepy again? I have some ideas…

  • You know that annoying elf? The one parents stress over moving every night? Sure you do. So now, do that. Only, instead of using the licensed one, go buy the creepiest thrift store doll you can find, and don’t tell anyone in your house that you bought it. Also, if they ask, deny that you have any idea where it came from. Do you live alone? Sneak it into a friend’s house instead.

 

  • Get a live Christmas tree. They’re filled with insects, which will wake up from their winter dormancy and infest your warm, cozy home. Maybe. Or so I’ve heard. But still definitely tell this to everyone you know who has a live tree. Bonus points if you heard about a friend of a friend who went to the hospital with a terrible ringing in his ear and a splitting headache, only to find out an earwig crawled out of the tree and burrowed into his ear.

 

  • Do you prefer not lying to your friends and family? Well, it won’t be as exciting, but there are a TON of holiday themed horror movies available for your viewing pleasure. Check out this nowhere-near-complete list. It’s an odd collection of new and old, big budget and low budget, popular and indie.

 

  1. The Nightmare before Christmas
  2. Krampus
  3. Black Christmas
  4. Gremlins
  5. A Christmas Horror Story
  6. Anna and the Apocalypse
  7. Silent Night, Deadly Night
  8. Shelved

 

Do you have a favorite holiday horror movie or creepy tradition? Let me know in the comments!

Holiday Hiding
This photo and many other used on this site are available for purchase on my Redbubble site.

 

All Hallows Read (a little late)

I meant to post this at Halloween, in honor of All Hallows Read. But…I didn’t. However, since the story was one of my more popular posts on my old blogger site, which I’ve since taken down, I wanted to share it anyway. I’ll be sharing a few of my better posts from that blog throughout the year. I’ll also include plenty of new spooky stuff, writing stuff, writing about spooky stuff, and spooky stuff about writing.

Probably cute animal pics and occasional anger, too. It is the internet, after all.

In any case, please click here to enjoy my short story, “Campfire Stories,” along with many other spooktacular stories and poems in the October 2019 issue of Sirens Call.

Then, come back in a couple of weeks and I’ll tell you all about some of the creepier Christmas traditions of times past, and how we can bring them back in today’s crazy, busy, tech-obsessed world.

Happy super-late Halloween!

Tink and Ghoul