True confessions, autumn edition

As an Episcopalian, I sometimes felt guilty that I was High Church and secretly attracted to a lot of things about Roman Catholicism. Papal authority, however, wasn’t one of those things, so I stayed in the Episcopal Church.

As a druid, I always felt guilty that I wasn’t attracted to Brigid. I had no devotion to this goddess that everyone in druidry seemed to love. Imbolc was All About Brigid for most people, and that just didn’t work for me. I have since learned that you cannot force devotion; it either comes or it doesn’t, and sometimes all attempts to cultivate it will fail.

As a pagan generally, I always feel guilty around this time of year because, well, because I’m not crazy about Halloween.


I love autumn. I love cooler weather, leaves falling, wearing my tweed cape, hot chai latte, pumpkins and other gourdage. And I don’t hate Halloween. I don’t have any objections to it on a religious basis. I adore The Nightmare Before Christmas. I have watched It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown religiously for as long as I can remember. (I think I like it even better than A Charlie Brown Christmas.)

I just seem to be missing a certain appreciation for The Spooky, for that whole complex of skeletons, bats, black cats, tombstones, cobwebs, dressing up. Once or twice a year, I can watch a horror movie and be really, genuinely frightened. The Blair Witch Project did a number on me because it was filmed in my neck of the woods (haha); for about two weeks after I saw it, I was scared of the city trees in their little wells of dirt, because they were the same trees I saw in the movie. Quarantine was utterly terrifying. If you have a chance, rent The Tingler from Netflix. Vincent Price will make you laugh and scream simultaneously. I may bring myself to see Crimson Peak in the cinema in a few weeks, because Tom Hiddleston.

Maybe there’s a gap in my psyche where the spooky ought to be, between cute or funny and outright frightening. Bats are cute. No, really, go look at pictures on Tumblr, they are. They’re fuzzy wee mammals who mostly eat fruit or bugs and sometimes nectar. Cemeteries are quiet boring places where you go with your grandmother to lay flowers. I’ve been in a number of places that were said to be haunted, but I’ve never encountered a ghost. As for costuming, I usually say on Halloween that I’m dressed as a normal person. Very few people seem to get the joke.

(One of these days, I’m going to dress up as a cockatiel, to amuse my bird.)

So, there it is. I’m a bad pagan, I guess, because I don’t care for Halloween. But that’s okay. You all enjoy yourselves. I’m waiting for Yule.


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Writer, musician, polytheist, and friend of birds. I like science fiction, fantasy, and superheroes a lot.

6 thoughts on “True confessions, autumn edition”

  1. *The Blair Witch Project did a number on me because it was filmed in my neck of the woods *

    Heh. Did you ever see the follow-up, Book of Shadows? My best friend (from many years ago) and I used to watch it like clockwork. And, oh, I am utterly offended! How dare you not love All Hallow’s?!?! I guess it’s not for everyone. Even though I really haven’t done much for it in several years it’s still one of my favorite holidays (note: I don’t draw a heavy distinction between it being a ‘secular’ and/or ‘religious’ thing) right up there with Yule, Christmas (season), Thanksgiving, etc.

    As a side note, I should mention that I have one of those tall mugs that keeps thing hot, it has Jack Skellington on it and I love it! Crimson Peak – I don’t watch a lot of TV but recently someone had it on and I heard the trailer and I had to arch my neck to look over. I thought “Yes!” cause I love those kinds of films but now you say Tom Hiddleston and my interest seems to have waned a tiny bit. I’m not a ‘hater’ – I’m just tired of seeing the guy and I blame a certain group of people (who shall remain nameless) for that!



    1. Now, what have you got against Hiddles? Unlike some other tall, posh, lanky Brits, I don’t feel over-exposed to him. *g* I am even more interested in seeing him play Hank Williams, implausible as it seems.


      1. Well, I have nothing against the man. See, the problem is all of the damn ‘Tom Hiddleston as Loki’ images (or just his face plastered on someone else’s body and stuff) that I’ve randomly encountered. It needs to stop!


      2. Ah, I getcha. I enjoyed his performance as Loki, but I didn’t fangirl him; I was more taken with Tony Stark and Steve Rogers in the first Avengers movie. I’ve grown fond of him as an actor based on other things, and he seems to be a fine person who uses his celebrity powers for good.


  2. Not unlike Xmas, the common commercial aspects of this holiday don’t much appeal to me. The fact that it’s the only time of year some people do “sexy” these days is really a sad state of affairs…


    1. Only the other hand, I’m frequently disturbed by how girls’ costuming is reduced to “princesses” and adult female costuming is reduced to “sexy ___”, with considerable overlap between the two, e.g., dressing a seven-year-old girl as a “sexy witch”. In my day a witch was just a witch on Halloween, and children went out trick or treating only after dark on October 31st. *shakes cane at kids on lawn*


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