Q: Is Halloween actually popular in Ghost World, or is that just a stereotype?
In Ghost World, Halloween is high holidays. More ghosts celebrate Halloween than Christmas–some 75-80% of ghosts. And we have the accompanying to-dos that precede any major holiday: consumerism, dinners, costume parties, the like.
We also have a massive spike in Haunting Club recruitment September-November.
Not that you need to be a registered member to go haunting on Halloween—it’s the one night of the year that anyone can go out to haunt passersby without a licence. But if you want to enter someone’s home to watch an advanced member of Haunting Club enact their grand finale on a groomed target, then you have to have passed a bystander exam, which takes at least a month of study. And when you are inevitably smitten by the performance, you end up plodding through another month of paperwork to win a sponsor and start your haunting coursework. Hence, the three month upsurge.
Q: How do ghosts celebrate?
It’s culturally specific in the same way that alively Halloween is. And it also varies by generation and received family tradition. But there are a few tendencies that seem to cross the board.
For instance, there is plenty of ‘candy’ a.k.a. colourful nodules of bright, pulsing, riveting energy that are specially formed to remind ghost children of the sugary tastes of alively candy and activate positive, exuberant emotions.
And almost all of us go haunting in some form.
Q: Are the veils truly thin on Halloween?
So, as you may have gathered by now, yes. Yes, they are.
On the one hand, you have all these little ghostlings flailing about full of ‘candy’, their outlines and energies heightened by the experience, sparking through the veils.
And on the other hand, you have adult ghosts who have either trained to haunt targets, or who plan to take advantage of the open season. The combination of intention turns the veil to nothing more than mesh for about three hours on either side of midnight as October passes into November.
Q: Will we haunt you, specifically?
That depends. But in short…
If you are out and about for Halloween and in a public space, then you’re fair game, but unlikely to be much bothered–haunting is difficult work and the unlicenced are also the unpracticed.
If you’re out in a cemetery or battleground or whathaveyou, then you might witness a haunting, generally with some visuals or a sense of heightened energy brought on by the collective locale.
If you live in or visit a home with a co-habitant ghost–a ghost that shares space but does not intentionally haunt, and therefore does not require a licence–you might see an uptick in their activity because of the circulating energies. It’ll pass.
If you’ve been targeted, oh you better believe we will haunt the shit out of you. What is Halloween even for if not that?
Q: Is Halloween evil or demonic?
No. Absolutely not. I cannot say this enough.
Halloween, for ghosts, is one part joy and one part nostalgia–a time to play and a time to remember how we played on the other side. It’s about connecting, to each other and to willing alivlies. It’s about silly costumes and happy (or tearfully candy-crashed) children. It’s lovely.