Sunday, October 29, 2017

HALLOWEEN MARY - P.F. Sloan - a Holiday Put-Down

About the only good thing you can say about how "adults" have taken over Halloween, is that it's good for the economy. Landlords can do a quick one-month rental on empty storefronts, with costume companies quickly setting up shop with masks, make-up, and every type of "fantasy" outfit imaginable. (P.F. Sloan masks aren't too popular, I must admit. But bootleggers on eBay actually sell paper masks of most every celebrity they can get away with.)

Some people, accustomed to Internet piracy, hate the idea of buying anything. One guy in Croatia asked, "What's the cheapest costume I can find?" The answer: "Dress up as a Dutchman." So the guy cut off one of his ears. Which did nothing for his tinnitis, and only got him derision. "Van Gogh was NOT cheap." "Oh no? He could've gotten that prostitute something expensive, but instead she only got an ear." And the ear was second-hand.

All seriousness aside, the reason for this post is that I noticed a newspaper article with the catchy title, "Millennials Have Ruined Halloween." Since you can't run out and buy it (newspapers, if you remember, only sell for one day), I'll quote a few key lines from the author, Kyle Smith:
"This year, 48 percent of American adults plan to wear a Halloween costume...Sixteen percent — that’s 50 million people — plan to put a costume on their pet. In other words, we’re just a year or two away from a majority of our nation’s adults playing kiddie dress-up. Halloween is blowing up because childhood is leaking further and further into adult life, and millennials in particular aren’t fully sold on the idea that they’re grown-ups."
Smith quotes author Kurt Andersen, who has a new book called "Fantasyland: How America Went Haywire." Andersen notes that once upon a time, “American adults never dressed up in costumes, certainly not as an annual ritual." Indeed, Halloween was for kids, and a reluctant sign of growing up was turning 12 or 13, and staying home. Andersen traces the adult dress-up phenomenon to the 80's and "...the Halloween parades invented by freshly out gay people in San Francisco and New York. Dressing up on Halloween became a thing straight adults did in every corner of the country.”
Halloween, with its parties, cards, candy, costumes and all, will generate NINE BILLION dollars in spending. This is a boon to retailers, who look to a new source of compulsive buying besides Christmas. Perhaps some singers, songwriters, authors and others now unable to make a living due to piracy, are bagging candy corn and a "I'm dressing as a woman for a PARTY," outfit for some guy at the cash register at a Halloween store. And getting minimum wage.

But Halloween is just part of the Peter Pan syndrome that not only affects America, but has spread all over the world. Kyle Smth concludes: "Video games — sales of which hit an all-time high of $30.6 billion last year — as well as the increasing popularity of cosplay (dressing up in costumes the other 364 days of the year), comic-book conventions, superhero movies and fantasy sports are all symptoms of what Andersen dubs “Kids ‘R’ Us Syndrome”: We’re losing our collective sense of when it’s time to put away childish things."
Ah, yes, childish things. In the Blogworld, this includes the line "don't ruin our FUN," when some adult who owns copyright or trademark actually hires a company to help out. "My link got taken down," huffs the childish blogger, "I'll put it back up! I'm an EQUAL to every star, and they should email me personally, ask politely, and convince me that it's really them, and THEN I might take the link down. But not if some hired company does it. Besides, lookie lookie,
 I'm SHARING. Isn't that NICE of me?"
Yeah. Some Peter Pan who never grew up, has no talent, and decides to be a star by giving shit away, is ready to "share." He's using a word his Mommy said was a sign of being a grown-up, but which he never did for real friends in the real world. His toys were HIS. But now, for total strangers, he'll copy off somebody else's property and declare proudly that he's SHARING. It's always entire albums and discographies in FLAC and using a dozen storage sites to keep those links alive. Pretty bratty for an ADULT. But not for a dolt. 
Too bad fans of Halloween actually have to BUY the candy, costumes and cards, and can't just download them like they do movies, music, porn, books, photos and apps from lovable Kim Dotcom's MEGA or Zippy the Pinhead's Zippyshare or Putin's yadda-yadda Yadi Yandex. One person's dream is another person's nightmare, but you have to be an ADULT to understand it and ACT RESPONSIBLY. And what fun is that? 
And here's P.F. Sloan doing his snarling Dylan bit, putting down HALLOWEEN MARY. Funny, the guy put out some albums, but is best remembered via a cover version of his "Eve of Destruction." This song comes from his early ABC Dunhill era, but he did try for a comeback now and then, and was sometimes coaxed into playing a set in front of a small circle of friends. Why, the last time I saw P.F. Sloan, he was summer burned. He was winter blown. And that's not really the best way to be blown. (I can say that...we're all ADULTS here, aren't we?)

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