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Thursday, November 03, 2005

The Pumpkinisation of Our Society

The last time that I remember anything from Halloween must have been 10 years ago. The time before that there was something about nearly drowning in a zinc bath of water trying to bite a floating apple whilst blindfolded with my hands behind my back .. or was that the time I was a hostage in Beirut. Anyhow it was all good fun BUT I still have the nightmares and am unable to eat a whole apple without being sick and confessing to being a witch. So where do these fucking pumpkins come from? We used to hollow out turnips (Swedes to you Southerners) and have the house smelling like stale farts for weeks and that was it as far as I remember – no pumpkins, no Bush/Blair masks. My sister made a pointey hat once, and there was something about bed sheets and the mother’s best table cloth to do the ghost thing but that was it.
Penny for the guy I remember but I do not remember the trick or treat mugging.
What happened?
Whilst I’m almost on the subject: why have there been fireworks going off since last week and why will they last until a week after bonfire night, and, why did Christmas start in July?

8 Comments:

Blogger Viking Longship said...

I guess living out in the sticks as you do, you havn't had kids trick or treating for the last 2 weeks, like the little beggers that I remember from my days in Slatefell estate in Cockernouth.

As for the Fireworks every night from 2 weeks before Halloween to 2 weeks after new year, can't say I'll miss them.

3/11/05 1:41 pm  
Blogger Nick said...

As Wim Wenders says in Im Lauf Der Zeit - 'Shit, the Yanks have colonised our sub-conscious . . .'

3/11/05 5:56 pm  
Blogger Lampy said...

Don't know about the asian population in cumbria, but down here just a mortar shot away from Southall, diwali and eid celebrations start in July and go on until the new year. Travel into the east-end and it's like a war zone atthis time of year.

3/11/05 7:14 pm  
Anonymous Dr John said...

Round here it was the Asian kids that came round wishing us "Happy Halloween"!

3/11/05 8:32 pm  
Blogger Nick said...

I think there's a curious point underlying this - the degree to which we are blind to the transformation of 'British' culture, because the agent of that tranformation is the biggest & most powerful culture around - that of the United States. The prevailing consensus, since 1945, has been that we are indistinguishably linked together - and that it is unquestionably in our interests for this to be so. Whereas the influence of other cultures involves 'swamping' us. There's an odd piece of doublethink here that goes close to the heart of our severely f***ed up sense of post-war identity . . .

4/11/05 7:53 pm  
Blogger RenMan said...

Is it only one way? Examples please Britishness in the Yank culture.

5/11/05 12:11 am  
Blogger Nick said...

No, it's not just one way, but when it goes the other way it's explicitly characterised as 'other' & not-American, rather than simply accepted as the way things are. Examples: The British Invasion (Beatles & Stones to us); 'classy' British menswear, tweeds etc . . .

5/11/05 8:39 am  
Anonymous Eleanor said...

Well, there's also royal worship over here. Thanks for sending Chas & Camilla over this week, by the way. The White House bravely tried to use them as yet another distraction from their daily disaster reports. If one reads Kevin Phillips' book on the Bush family in particular, you'll find they are very proud of their so-called blue blood connection to the titled English, not that this came up during any election campaigns.

5/11/05 2:18 pm  

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