Friday, October 29, 2010

7 Quick Takes: Volume 16

The idea of 7 Quick Takes Friday comes from blogger Jennifer Fulwiler, who hosts it weekly at her site, Conversion Diary.


It's Hallowe'en weekend. Many neighborhoods in my area have scheduled trick-or-treating for tomorrow (Oct. 30), rather than the actual day Hallowe'en falls on.

So tomorrow, as a treat to my readers, I'll be posting a little something special. It might not be a life-changer, but it'll be fun — and you won't even have to dress up!

Hopefully, you won't feel like this guy:


When I was looking for that video, I discovered this little tidbit on Wikipedia:

Charlie Brown's repeated line of "I got a rock" caused some stir among many viewers of the show, according to Charles Schulz in the book and retrospective TV special "Happy Birthday, Charlie Brown". Schulz said that after the program first aired, bags and boxes of candy came in from all over the world "just for Charlie Brown."


Yes, I spell it Hallowe'en.

Tonsure. Yep, that's what they call it.
Now you know what to ask for.

Of course, Oct. 31 is also Reformation Day.

Last year I wrote on that connection, confessing my desire to go trick-or-treating dressed as Martin Luther, and my friend Katrina told me about her annual Reformation Day tradition of telling her family, "OK, everyone: line up for your tonsures!"

Oh, geeky church history humor. Gotta love it.


But it seems I'm not the only one who finds humor in the idea of Martin Luther trick-or-treating.

Matt Zainea has written a funny and thought-provoking article on the Hallowe'en/Reformation Day connection. Cleverly titled 95 Theses or Reese's Pieces (or When Narratives Collide), it begins with a mashup of the two holidays, and goes on to explain how Hallowe'en evolved over the years and how their family celebrates. Here's an excerpt:
The senior Father quickly scanned the list and got a troubled look on his face. He sensed that the 95 theses would cause much trouble. "What is this? Some sort of trick?", he demanded. Martin retorted, "I think it's a treat for the church." The superior countered, "I think it is a trick." Martin entrenched, "No. It's a treat."
"Trick!" said the superior.
"Treat!" said Martin.
"Well, trick or treat I am posting them," Martin insisted.
"Get off this stoop," insisted the superior.
"No!" said Martin. "Here I stand. I can do no other."
"Here. I'll give you this candy to take down your stupid theses and go away," offered the superior.
Priceless. Wish I'd written it. Click the link above and keep reading for the thought-provoking part.

Edited to add: reader and friend R. left a thoughtful comment pointing to a blog post contesting the Hallowe'en/Samhain connection; Relevant Magazine just posted a light article summarizing the position that connects the two. Regardless of what individuals or families choose to do with this holiday, I hope we'll let grace rule how we speak to others' choices.


Ready for a little break from the Hallowe'en theme? Here's a beautiful video from Cake Wrecks:


But we can't end this post without candy! Here's comedian Tim Hawkins:

Happy Friday, and don't forget to come back tomorrow — anyone dressed up as Martin Luther (including the tonsure) gets extra Snickers!



  1. Great article about Halloween but unfortunately, the idea that Halloween sprung from the old celtic Samhain traditions is a historical myth. Everyone will tell you it is true because everyone has heard it was true but there is actually NO historical evidence for it. Samhain was an Irish harvest festival -and that's all we know about it because there is only one record of it having ever happened. But, even if the holiday was about the dead (which there is zero evidence of), the Celts didn't use a solar calendar so their dates could not have corresponded to October 31. After the reformation in Britain, only Catholics celebrated All Saint's Day and that is when the holiday began to be associated with "spooky" things and witches -because the protestants were persecuting anyone who believed in the heretical Catholic beliefs. Here is an interesting article about when the holiday was first identified with the ancient Celts.

  2. Thanks for your comment, R.! :)

    Interesting article you linked to -- Relevant just ran one refuting the connection as well.

  3. Pam, maybe I misunderstood, but it seems to me the Relevant article wasn't so much refuting the Hallowe'en/Samhain connection so much as supporting it. What am I missing?

  4. Oops, there was a "so much" sandwich in that comment.

  5. Rachel: Thanks for your attentiveness! I must have been reading too fast. I've edited the sentence. :)

    (Next time we go for lunch, maybe I'll order the "so much" sandwich.)


All comments are moderated by the blog's author prior to publication.