Ten Things Not to Do on Halloween




I’m pretty sure I don’t have to explain  the inspiration for this list. Since today is Halloween, it is pretty obvious. Yes, there are some things on this list that I have done, but I’ll let you figure out which ones.

Ten Things Not to Do on Halloween

10 On Halloween, do not run out of candy. If you do, at best you will be marked as a cheap skate. At worst, the amount of soap on your windows will require a profession crew to remove. (That handing out pennies idea didn’t work so well did it, Rube?)

9 On Halloween, do not try to hide in the basement with all the lights off. If you do, at best you will miss out on some cute costumes. At worst, the gremlins, witches, and goblins will make it a point to discover why you are not home. (That glowing computer screen did you in Ferd.)

8 On Halloween, do not try any scare tactics on the trick or treaters. If you do, at best the neighborhood watch group will be paying you a call. At worst, Child Protective Services will have your house identified as a possible child abuse location. (I know it seemed funny at the time, but think of the scarred little psyches not to mention the accidents on your front porch.)

7 On Halloween, do not hand out home-made anything. If you do, at best it will all be thrown away. At worst, the local health department will be acting on a complaint and will insist on inspecting your kitchen. (That white glove sure looks bad in the light Bunkie.)

6 On Halloween, do not make the trick or treaters do anything for their treats. If you do, at best you’ll get blank stares. At worst you’ll get a visit from Tiny the WFF champion wrestler who is escorting the kids and he will insist that you dance or else get his special treat. (You don’t want to see Tiny’s knuckle sandwich up close.)

5 On Halloween, do not hand out toothbrushes instead of candy. If you do, at best you will win the “kook of the neighborhood” award. At worst, most of the trick or treaters will be polite but Tiny’s kid will insist on a candy treat while sitting on your chest. (It is funny what is passed in the gene pool isn’t it?)

4 On Halloween, if you insist on wearing a costume, do not make the trick or treaters guess what or who you are. If you do, at best they will not have a clue. At worst, they will all guess wrong and you will suddenly realize you have a screw loose for even trying in the first place. (Funny how some things go out of style quickly. It is surprising that the five-year olds couldn’t get your Tele Tubby costume. (Your favorite show as a kid right?)

3 On Halloween, do not attempt to pass out shots of alcohol to the parents of trick or treaters. If you do, at best you will be very popular until the wee hours of the morning. At worst, your neighbors will assume you have some kind of problem and will ask the police to make sure no kids get your handout. (That sure took a nasty turn, didn’t it Beauford?)

2 On Halloween, do not leave a bowl of treats on the porch with a note to “take one on the honor system.” If you do, at best the treats will be gone before sundown. At worst, the trick or treaters will ring your bell every three seconds in pursuit of a refill. (You quickly learned that “honor” in your neighborhood means “me first.”)

1 On Halloween, do not watch Nightmare on Elm Street, Psycho, Friday the Thirteenth, Amityville Horror, The Exorcist, Rosemary’s Baby, or any other horror movie. If you do, at best you  will need the day off tomorrow. At worst, the EMS crew will find it mildly amusing that you were in charge of your own heart attack. (You could have just read a book Bevis. At the scary part you could have put it down.)


  1. Great list John. I won’t confess as to which one(s) I’m familiar with

    1. I can only imagine. I left out standing in a graveyard at midnight. Maybe that was the one.

      1. I’m pretty sure you could have made this the 25 things not to do. Especially if you included “Devil’s Night” pranks that would probably be considered acts of terrorism these days.

      2. How about in Detroit? Torch a house for Halloween.

  2. Oh dear, I’m new to Halloween and doing it all wrong! 🙂
    Thanks for the good laughs, John. 🙂

    It’s very foggy and spooky in Norway right now, shiver …

    1. Good time to start trick or treating. Get a pillow case and go door to door. You may get a cookie or two depending on your costume. Thanks, Dina. 🙂

  3. Gwen Plano · ·

    Oh my gosh! LOL!! Please tell me you didn’t cause “accidents on your front porch.” 🙂

    1. I have to admit I did. I had two speakers on either side of the door and when the door opened this goulash, fiendish laugh rang out in stereo. Had a few leave a trail.

  4. Great list. The ‘do something’ ones drive me nuts since my son has no idea what’s going on. He doesn’t take well. to his trick or treat shout and get candy system getting undone. Don’t even get me started on the honor bowl thing. Half the neighborhood did it one year and the cauldrons were emptied by a pack of high schoolers. Very slim pickings.

    1. Yeah. I’ve had the experience. Good luck this year. Happy Halloween, Charles. 🙂

      1. Thanks. Fingers crossed that it goes smoothly. Weekday Halloween is always iffy these days.

      2. It is hard on everyone. Should be the last Saturday in October.

      3. That would be great. I’ll even take a Sunday.

      4. We need to ask Queen Hillary as soon as she takes her throne.

      5. Did not expect this to go political. Pretty sure Congress would try to ban Halloween entirely though.

  5. What a great list, John! Our neighbors tried the honor bowl one year, even the bowl was taken. Happy Halloween!

    1. Ha ha ha. That is pretty funny. I can see their faces. 😀

    2. Oh, my! That’s pretty rude 🙂

      1. I agree, Marie. Can you imagine?

  6. You’re right about number two not working. There may be honor among thieves, but not among children dressed as pirates.

    1. Thanks, Bun. I picked this up out of the spam folder. Sorry I did not respond sooner

      1. No problem, John. I’m used to about one in every forty or fifty of my comments deciding to visit some other blogger’s spam folder. I’ve never quite been able to work out why it happens, though. 🙂

      2. I know right? 🙂

  7. Sounds like good advice. I love the part about Tiny’s special treat.

    1. Yes. Tony has to make an appearance every week. 🙂

      1. You know, my auto-correct tried to force Tony when I wanted Tiny too.

      2. Yeah, I didn’t even catch it. Stupid Mac

      3. And iPhone, and iPad…

      4. Yes. Those too. I can see correcting a word like superfluous but TINY????? Come on.

      5. Maybe Tiny should go visit them.

  8. Happy Halloween, John!

    1. Thank you, Jan. Welcome back from your author event. Hope it went well. (of course it went well. Duh) 🙂

  9. Absolutely loved this one! When my youngest son was in grade 10, he put a scarecrow sitting in a lawn chair on one side of the front door, while he dressed exactly the same way and sat in a matching chair on the other side. He just winked at the little kids, but he “came alive” for a group of teenagers that came to the door. I can still hear their shrill screams as they ran down the street!

    1. Ha ha ha. Good one, John. 😀

  10. Happy Halloween to you John!

    1. To you as well, Philip. I’ll bet Angus is the cutest!!! 😀

  11. When I was really little I remember a house had candy out on the honour system, the older kids in front of me took all of it and I remember feeling very sad looking in that empty bowl.

    1. I have a similar memory. Thanks for the comment and the visit. 🙂

  12. Wise advise, John. 😀 Happy Halloween hugs.

    1. Thanks, Teagan. Happy halloween to you as well.:-)

      1. Oh, I have another one for your list…
        If the little community Halloween parade stops outside your door, with the 6 big bass drums banging away so much that your entire house shakes… 1) Do not run out of the shower naked. At best the whole neighborhood standing on your sidewalk will scream in terror. At worst you will be arrested for an indecent Halloween costume
        2) When the house shakes and windows nearly come out of their frames (from those drums), do not open the front door and indulge in creative uses of the “F” word at the top of your lungs… At best no one will understand your screaming over the said bass drums, but point at the crazy woman. At worst… well the police again.
        Yes… there was another parade… Happy Halloween.

      2. I hope these were from your imagination and not personal experience. Of course, either way they were hilarious. 😀

      3. Well… the floor needed mopping anyway, and I stopped before I reached the stairs to the living room… Sometimes the only think you can do is laugh. More hugs.

      4. I actually ran out thinking my towel was still in place to chase a dog off the grass. I think I made it about fifty feet before the breeze reminded me of my condition. Going back was the hardest part.

  13. In regards to #1, my son and I were all set to watch The Exorcist Saturday night. Opened the Netflix envelope only to find – The Jungle Book (they sent the wrong movie). Don’t know that I’ll ever get over it – what’s Halloween without a good horror movie?

    1. They will give you a freebie for that mistake. Sorry about that, Teri.

    2. Darn Teri… that stinks. But Disney is pretty scary… all that freakish singing and wholesomeness… 😀 Hugs

      1. Not to mention the hidden messages. 🙂

  14. Halloween sounds terrifying in the States!

    1. Not as terrifying sounding as running of the bulls in Spain. 😀

      1. Ah yes, that’s true – even our local events here with the people in the cages and the bulls out in the streets results in at least one injury eavery year – to the people that is, not the bulls.

      2. In a way I’m glad the bulls don’t get hurt.

  15. Oh, John, these are GREAT (and I imagine most of us can totally relate to one or more, ha!!)

    1. Thanks, Debbie. 🙂

  16. Great list, John! When my husband and I first moved to our neighborhood, we thought about dressing up in costume but quickly decided against it as we didn’t really know how our neighbors would feel about that. And most of the kids that come by are just interested in the treats, no tricks 😉 We don’t have many (if any) young families in our neighborhood anymore so I suspect we’ll be taking bags of M&Ms to work tomorrow 😉 Happy Halloween, John!

    1. Thanks Marie. Happy Halloween to you as well.

  17. A very helpful list and so true! Happy Halloween, John! Beautiful weather for the kids.

    1. Yes it is. Happy Halloween, Jo.

  18. Fantastic. My favorite is #8, especially the afterthought. 😀 😀 😀
    The rest are hilarious too.

    1. Thanks, Tess. Glad you like them.

  19. 😀👻 my brother had a murder mystery party this year, great fun, I used to love trick or treating and I remember getting home made cakes, but our neighbour made fantastic cakes 😀

    1. Those kinds of parties are a lot of fun. These days homemade anything would hit the trash due to distrust.

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