October 30, 2016

"As varied and popular as the romantic Halloween customs were, they began to lose their hold on the American public in the early 20th century."

"Women, the traditional party hosts and targets of such games, were gaining greater agency over their lives, eroding the appeal of rituals that underscored their lack of power."

Games? Games like "snap apple":

39 comments:

John said...

Is that picture intended as Laszlo bait?

Tied woman? Check

Ball gag? Check

Let's see if it works.

John Henry

tim in vermont said...

Isn't every Halloween costume some kind of appropriation?

art.the.nerd said...

An attractive woman, her hands bound behind her, bent over, opening her mouth. By all means, let's bring back these "romantic Halloween customs."

Achilles said...

The problem is similar to the nudist beach. None of the people that participate are the ones you want to participate.

Eric the Fruit Bat said...

They made fun of nostalgic interest in that sort of stuff when Amy Farrah Fowler staged a Victorian Christmas.

TosaGuy said...

Agency needs to go in the same verbal trash bin as garner.

madAsHell said...

"Women, the traditional party hosts and targets of such games, were gaining greater agency over their lives, eroding the appeal of rituals that underscored their lack of power."

Tomorrow's column will shame women for having sex, and remind them how masturbation allows them greater agency over their lives, eroding the appeal of rituals that underscored their lack of power. Men are not needed.

Hands off my body!!

Sean Gleeson said...

I think most of these games were invented to answer the perennial question, “What are we gonna do with all these damned apples?”

gilbar said...

so, in the olden days: "Given the importance of finding a desirable marriageable man in an era when prim, proper, ladylike behavior was the norm, young women often reveled in chances to participate in well-established and -regarded tradition..."

whereas Now; proper young women participate in the well-established and regarded tradition of dressing as Slutty Nurse, Slutty vampire, Slutty etc; getting stinking drunk and go out to "finding a desirable man"

What's Changed, exactly?

ddh said...

tim in vermont said...
Isn't every Halloween costume some kind of appropriation?


All costumes matter.

chickelit said...

Joyce wrote about Halloween "woman" customs in turn of the century Ireland in his poignant short story "Clay." It still haunts me.

buwaya puti said...

All party games are instigated and organized by women AFAIK, and always have been.
So also things like costume parties and dancing.
They more or less twist mens arms to participate.

Guys organize games for themselves and women only occasionally butt in.

So this is all about modern women blaming men for things their grandmas did all on their own.

AprilApple said...

Now, Halloween is about buying all sorts of crap made in China at a Halloween super-store.

buwaya puti said...

Whats changed is the social part of the business of mate selection. This was formerly at least partly a social affair - conducted in public in view of a stable set of peers and relatives who had life- long experience of the character of the people involved, and the mating behavior was within customary limits and according to formulas.

And the formulas and rituals helped. The set of these is the core of human culture I think.

These days it is individual, anonymous, and at best in the context of ad hoc groups assembled from near-strangers, casual aquaintances given ersatz emotional weight by the otherwise lonely women. And there are no accepted formulas to follow.

This is I think the reason this takes so long, why it seems to so many to require dangerous follies like exhibitionism, promiscuity and drug abuse, and so often ends in failure. Its sad, pathetic really. This is not how people were meant to go about such an important thing.

YoungHegelian said...

By some strange piece of visual association, the "Snap Apple" illustration reminds me of Jack Kirby's illustration for this venerable pulp classic.

Which, lest we forget, can be purchased through our hostess' Amazon portal.....

buwaya puti said...

Frazetta did much better.
The absolute ideal of Burroughs illustrators.
Ne plus ultra.

YoungHegelian said...

@BP,

But that cover is such pure Kirby in its themes: big hair, big "headlights" (as they're known in the comics illustration world), bondage, kinetic violence, & an almost Titianesque idea of "voluptuousness" (no "stick girls" for ol' Jack).

William said...

I'm not sure but I think bondage is more a woman thing than a male thing. Fifty Shades of Gray is read almost exlusively by women. Who's got the time and patience to fool around with all those elaborate harnesses and knots. To me, the beau ideal expression of romantic lust is holing up in a luxury hotel with a rotating cast of pornstars.......I'm not totally opposed to women dressing up a Wonder Woman and engaging in a little light bondage, but it's not a priority.........Women are far more masochistic than they're willing to admit. They have to be. The final culmination of the sex act is childbirth. I've been reliably informed that this hurts a lot. Maybe it's in the reproductive interest of humanity, for women to eroticize pain and suffering........This primate thing which is so much a part of our evolutionary heritage makes monkeys of us all.

buwaya puti said...

No stick girls for Frazetta either, and thank God for that!

But a lot of the rest of the Kirby-comic stuff is just, meh.
It does not charm.

buwaya puti said...

William, ditto.

I don't get it. Pretty women need no assistance other than a smile. That suffices for any healthy fellow. And it should go without saying that it is not prudent to have anything to do with disturbed people.

Laslo Spatula said...

Sketchy Guy Who Works at the Adult Bookstore says:

Halloween, man: it's the time of the year when I see the most women come into the store. And a lot of these women are straight, not just the usual lesbians doing the 'looking for a new dildo but thicker this time' thing: they always upgrade to thicker. Same with their butt-plugs: some of those things could be misidentified as a fire hydrant in the dark...

No, these straight chicks are looking for naughty items for Halloween: French Maid outfits, Sexy Nurse outfits, crotchless panties, whips, furry handcuffs, you get it. And of course the sweaty disheveled guys in the store watch them intently: these giggling women stroking the plastic cocks with their fingertips WILL be masturbated to later that night...

Last year I had a woman ask me for assistance in choosing a strap-on cock. Like I'm an expert: I just sell the shit. She goes on to tell me that her boyfriend likes to dress in women's clothing at home, and for Halloween he is going to go out in his favorite female outfit, and she was going to go with him as a man with a strap-on cock. Whatever works, you know? Like I'm some sexual psychiatrist: I get paid minimum wage, people...

So I show her the strap-on cocks, and she asks if I've used one. I tell her I already have a penis, and she says no, I mean have you ever been with a woman wearing a strap-on cock? I tell her that, no, I've never had a woman fuck me in the ass with a strap-on cock, if that is what you're asking; she blushed and nodded...

She then goes on about how her boyfriend wants her to fuck him in the ass with a strap-on cock: he is not gay or anything, you understand, he just thinks it could be fun to experiment. Uh-huh I say, and then she says 'Maybe I could practice on you' in that way that is said as a joke but both people know it is not really a joke...

"Would you suck my cock first and let me shoot my load on your face?" I ask, and now she has that deer-in-the-headlights look. Oh, she was just kidding, really, she says, and I sell her the strap-on: her hands tremble when she pulls out her wallet. I ask her that I need to see her ID, and now she looks really uncomfortable. I don't really need to see her ID, but it gives me the chance to see her name and quickly memorize her address...

"Thanks, Janet Adams," I smile as she hurries out the door...

Would I have let her fuck me in the ass with the strap-on? I don't know: maybe? Stranger things have happened to me here at the Book Store...


I am Laslo.

Gahrie said...

Just like everything else...the romance of Halloween has degraded into simple sex.

Gahrie said...

I'm not sure but I think bondage is more a woman thing than a male thing.

Not so fast....go pick up a copy or two of the books in John Norman's Gor series, or more recently John Ringo's Ghost series.

n.n said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
n.n said...

degraded into simple sex

The sexual revolution heralded the renewal of abortion rites, "rape" culture, taxable commodities, and a general state of dysfunction.

rcocean said...

I like this idea of an old fashioned Halloween

RichardJohnson said...

I was told that the Halloween rituals of my grandfather's generation in the early 1900s consisted of putting carriages on rooftops. From my father a generation later, knocking down outhouses. Carriages weren't around anymore, and a Model T was a lot heavier than a carriage.

buwaya puti said...

rcocean -

Its an interesting contrast isn't it?

That was a print for a popular magazine, about what the upper crust was doing. Plain old apple bobbing, but dressed to the nines, in an aesthetically graceful manner, in a palace. The audience for that magazine wanted to be these people.

And they really did dress like that, the upper crust, and besides which they put enormous effort into mental training - "accomplishments", languages, history, complex music, all sorts of demanding skills, plus the genuine sort of noblesse oblige.

Thats what the non-rich people aspired to, not just wealth, but beauty and grace and honor.

William said...

They aim for grace and elegance and end up in WWI.

William said...

Laslo has an especially inspired entry. Browning had Elizabeth Barrett, and Laslo has Althouse.

buwaya puti said...

"They aim for grace and elegance and end up in WWI."

That was the curse of technology. Armies of millions and weapons that could kill them.
But the baby went out with the bathwater.

rhhardin said...

Women used to play the piano too.

buwaya puti said...

"Women used to play the piano too."

Everyone used to play something. And sing too. It was expected.

buwaya puti said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Fen said...

Ah yes, Feminism chimes in to remind me yet again that, as women have been so easily oppressed by men for some 5,000 years, they are inferior.... You go girl!

Phunctor said...

"This is your last free article for the month".

Actually, had I known it was Pinch's rag it would have been my 0'th. Please, Ann, give us some warning if you link to the NYT, or the Daily Stormer for that matter.

n.n said...

How characteristically selective of The New York Times. I wonder how many Halloween parties involved baby trials. Apple-picking is a twist. Perhaps it was evidence of repentance.

rcocean said...

"The audience for that magazine wanted to be these people."

Good point!

traditionalguy said...

Does anybody remember bobbing for apples. It gets the guy or gal's shirt wet, so Laslo's ancestors must have invented it.