Sunday, October 28 2012 00:36

31 Days of Halloween: When Trick or Treating comes not on Halloween...

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I turned 36 last week, and while many people would say "that isn't really old," I sure feel old when I think about how much Trick or Treating has changed over the past 30 years or so. Raising a pair of daughters in 2012 and beyond, gone is much of the spooky fun that was experienced as a child growing up in the 80s.

Trick or Treating took place on Halloween - a rain-or-shine affair - that would proceed regardless of whether or not the holiday fell on a "school night." The biggest difference I can think of is that Trick or Treating took place when it was dark outside. It was something to look forward to, and if you happened to be in school, you'd count down the hours until it was time to get home. By the time you were off the bus, it was already getting dark, and from there you'd make your way through the neighborhood, searching for a bounty of candy well into the night. Our parents went with us as we made our way down streets that were littered with fallen leaves  that would crunch under foot, deposited by tall, old trees. With the smell of Fall in the air, we'd make our way by the light of glow sticks (and the occasional streetlamp) toward dimly-lit porches that bore the flicker of Jack 'O Lanterns illuminated by real candles.

Those days are long since gone where we live in Illinois, and this year is a prime example of just how much things have changed.

Trick or Treating is today - three days before Halloween, on a Sunday afternoon. In broad daylight.

Sure, it's fun for the little ones, and it's undoubtedly safer, despite the fact that parents should always accompany their children while Trick or Treating. But that spookiness is still missing. What I fear is that current and future generations will miss out on the fun of that underlying evil that once embodied the true "spirit" of Halloween. Call me old fashioned.

James Zahn

James Zahn is best-known as The Rock Father™, a media personality, commentator, adventurer and raconteur. He is the Owner, Publisher, and Editor-in-Chief of THE ROCK FATHER™ Magazine. In January, 2019, after nearly a decade of publishing The Rock Father™ Magazine, he joined Adventure Media and Events as Senior Editor of The Toy Book—the leading trade publication for the toy industry since 1984, as well as The Pop Insider — a destination for all things pop culture, and The Toy Insider — the leading consumer guide for toys and games. He is also editor of The Toy Report, a weekly newsletter published by The Toy Book each Thursday. Zahn has over 27 years of experience in the entertainment, retail and publishing industries.

He regularly serves as a Brand Ambassador and spokesperson for several Globally-recognized pop culture and lifestyle brands in addition to consulting for a number of toy manufacturers. 

Creatively, James has directed/edited music videos, lyric videos, and album trailers for bands such as FEAR FACTORY, has appeared as an actor in feature films and commercials, written comic books, and performed in bands. He currently serves as an artist manager and video director for PRODUCT OF HATE, whose debut album was released by Napalm Records in 2016, distributed by ADA/Warner Music in the U.S. with Universal Music handling global. A new album has been completed and is set for release this year.

Zahn and/or his work have been featured in/on CNN, NBC, ABC, WGN, CBS, GCTN, G4, The Chicago Tribune, Forbes, MarketWatch, Reuters, BusinessWire, Fangoria, Starlog and more. He's appeared as a music expert on CNN's AC360 alongside Anderson Cooper, and has been interviewed by Larry King. In the past he served as a writer for the Netflix Stream Team,  Fandango Family and PBS KIDS, penned articles for Sprout and PopSugar, and was a contributor to Chicago Parent.

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