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The 9 Stages of Halloween Appreciation Throughout Life

One day you will wake up and find that your favorite holiday has changed. For instance, most of you can mark the end of childhood by the year that Christmas went from an orgy of gift-opening awesomeness to a tense slog of shopping and traveling. But there is no holiday that so perfectly marks the various stages of your life like Halloween. Let's take a stroll through what you'll be saying at ...

Ages 1 to 3

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Hey, what are you doing? Am I in trouble? Oh, I see, it's a bath. Wait, no, a bath is when you take things off of my skin. This is the opposite of that. What are you putting on me? Is ... is that makeup? I'm confused -- just last week, you yelled at me for doing exactly this thing that you're doing to me right now. Is it some sort of punishment, like when you made Chad smoke that whole pack of cigarettes after you caught him smoking one?

Wait, where are we going? No, no, no, no, no. You've made it abundantly clear that I'm not allowed out after dark. And it is anything but light outside right now. I'm tired. I just want to go to bed, but you don't seem to understand that, so I think I'll start screaming now. That generally works. Here I go. WWWAAAAHHHHH- holy crap, is that candy? At night? Really? Is ... is this a trick? OK, well make sure you get me some more of this. I'm just gonna crash here in the back seat until you're done with whatever it is you're doing.

Ages 4 to 7

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Man, I have been begging my mom to let me dress like a robot for virtually my entire life, and now that the opportunity is finally here, can I handle it? Do I have what it takes to handle that kind of power and responsibility? I mean, seriously, this is the one night of the year that I get to dress however I want, and instead of people punching me and calling me names until I cry blood, people give me candy, and it's totally expected that I eat it all. How crazy is that? Whoever came up with this holiday is a genius!

Oh, dude, it's my teacher's house! How cool is that? I've never seen her outside of class before. It's kind of weird and exciting at the same time. I never really looked at her as a normal human before with a life outside of class. But there she is, handing out candy to little kids and smiling and having fun and not teaching any of them math. I have to go trick or tr- oh, man, someone vandalized her yard! Who would do that? I wonder what she did to make them mad? I hope she filed a police report.

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No judge. No jury. Straight to the executioner.

That's weird, she doesn't look mad. Man, I would be. If that stuff gets wet, it's going to just stick to everything. And is that soap on her windows? That's not how you wash windows at all! It doesn't even look like they used water. Just sort of rubbed the bar all over it. I'm not even a professional window cleaner, and I know that's not how you do it.

Oh, I know! After this, we should stop by grandma's house so she can see my costume. I know she'll have candy, too, because she always has those little dishes of them on the coffee table. I bet on a holiday like this, she just goes nuts and springs for the good stuff.

Ages 8 to 12

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Listen up, guys, we have three hours and 15 minutes to cover a 12-block radius. If you don't count the shitty, poor section of town, we could easily have that covered with time left over to TP the shit out of our teacher's lawn. I'm so sick of that bitch's shit, and this year we're going to reap the sweet fruits of revenge with some good old-fashioned vandalism.

You'll notice that my little brother is here. Mom is making me bring him along, and I've been told that I have to keep a close eye on him. But make no mistake, if he starts slowing us down, we will absolutely ditch him and tell her that he wandered off on his own. If we play the guilt card and tell her that she had no business making kids as young as us watch him, we should get away with it.

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"Yeah, be thankful it's still light out, you slow piece of shit!"

Quick rundown of the rules, and then we'll head out. 1) If you hit up a row of houses that are handing out shitty green rock candy, give the rest of us a heads up so we know to skip it. It means we're in old people territory, and we're just wasting precious time. 2) The same goes for popcorn balls, candy corn, fruit or any food that can be made in someone's oven. 3) Under no circumstances are we to stop at any of our grandparents' houses. They'll want to take pictures, and by the time we get out of there, we'll have pulled an hour right out of our assholes, set it on fire and pissed on the smoldering ashes.

Most importantly, we start at the rich section of town right at the beginning of the evening. And where do we end the night? That's right, the same rich section. Enough time should pass for them to forget we were there, and whatever candy they have left, they'll be getting rid of by the handful. Let's break, and remember: If you find a house that's giving out full-sized candy bars, you fucking damn well better let the rest of us know.

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"Just put it in the bag, lady, I've got shit to do."

Ages 13 to 18

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Sooooo ... when is it no longer appropriate for us to beg for candy? Like, hypothetically, if I were to dress up and go out with my friends, and we -- just as a goof, mind you -- just decided to knock on a few doors, and- no? Well, understand that we'd just be doing it ironically, you know, because we totally know that we're too old to be trick-or-treating. I mean, think about it -- wouldn't it be hilarious if we knocked on someone's door, and when they opened it, expecting to see children, they'd find us there instead? We're almost adults, but there we'd be in our little kid costumes, and- no?

Yeah, I guess you're right. It's high time we grew up and found some more adult things to do, like maybe go to one of the 10 million Halloween parties happening around town. No, we totally understand that we're too young to drink, and that the actual adults don't want a bunch of high school kids hanging around them while they're getting drunk and showing each other their genitals ... or whatever it is that adults do.

Maybe we can just ... I dunno. Maybe just stay home and hand out the candy to actual trick-or-treaters. No, it's cool, we'll be fine. I mean, it's not like every other age group in existence is having fun tonight. To be totally honest, I was looking forward to watching that Halloween and Pumpkinhead marathon. Or maybe that Charlie Brown cartoon they play every year. Yeah, I'll be fine -- you guys go out and have fun. Um, Mom, do you think that before you and Dad head out, you could maybe zip up your fucking top about 10 inches or so? Since when did Halloween become "show as much of your tits as you possibly can without going to jail"?

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"Let's go, the booze isn't going to drink itself!"

Ages 19 to 28

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I have to fuck that chick who's dressed like Minnie Mouse with enormous fake boobs. I have to. And it'll be hilarious, too, because I'm dressed as a woman. Look at the size of the boobs I've created for myself! Man, my friends had no idea what kind of wacky hijinks they were getting into when they asked me to come along. You put me, Halloween and a little booze together, and it's guaranteed to be a crazy night, because I am a wild man! Wooooohoooo! I bet they think I'm crazy. Because I am! What kind of man dresses up as Dolly Parton? Not a sane one, I'll tell you that much right now.

Fuck, this wig is hot. Maybe I should slow down on these drinks. Eh, fuck it, you only live once. Oh shit, a total stranger just walked up and squeezed my fake boobs! That guy is hilarious! I wonder how many people I can get to motorboat them. I'm going to just start walking up to people around the bar and thrusting my boobs out at them. They'll love that.

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"I fucking hate you guys so much."

Oh, man, the big boob Minnie Mouse chick is coming over. I have to f- wait that's a dude! He can't do that! The fake boob thing was my idea! This is bullshit. I'm gonna demand that he change his costume right now. I'm not normally a fighter, but I will fuck him up if he ruins my night. Wait, I don't think he realizes I'm a guy. Oh, man, I have to prank him. I wonder if I could blow him before he realizes I'm a dude.

Oh, God, I'm gonna puke right now. Bathroom, bathroom, bathroom, bathroom!

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