Archive Opinion The Orion

Buis’ Bits: Trick-or-treat like a man

August 1, 2005

There’s no such thing as being too old to trick-or-treat.

Now before you run out in your “sexy” Charlie Brown ghost costume and raise Cain in the neighborhood, here’s the plan to make your All Saints Day truly memorable.

If you’ve already bought your Halloween stash candy and it’s still October, you’re a fool.  There’s no gentle way to put it.

The magic of the midnight following All Hallow’s Eve is the bewitching effect it has on candy prices.  Massive bags of Tootsie Rolls that would have run you almost $5 at 11:59 p.m. suddenly become out of season.

Why?  Because Christmas is trying to wrap its tinseled tentacles around the store.  The power of J.C.’s birth is enough to banish the bats and spiders of fall to make room for the debt…I mean, joy of winter.

If you’re normally not a religious person, then the idea of Christmas being shoved in your face for six months out of the year is a bad thing.

Nov. 1 is the exception to this rule.

That bag of 470 midgees suddenly goes for just a buck or two.  Starburst, Skittles, Snickers-they’re all suddenly affordable enough to stock up until finals.

Believe it or not, there is etiquette and a few rules to such a seemingly simple process:

1. Stick it to the man

This is the only time of the year one should enjoy shopping at Wal-Mart.  The day after Halloween is your chance to stick it to the six of the 10 richest people in America at once.  Instead of buying the day before, you can cut the price in half or more.  Take that, Walton family!

2. Screw intelligent design

If the candy is in massive, unsorted bins in the store, Darwin becomes king.  It’s survival of the fittest.  Some little girl tries to take that bag of Crunch bars you had your eye on, then by God, it’s time to show her who’s boss.

3. Do unto others…

The corollary to that rule is to not bury an opportunity.  The fastest way to find what you want is to divide the labor.  Let her father dig out one side while you gently sift through, being careful not to slow his progress.  If he finds nothing, then maybe you can repay the favor and dig on the other side.  Just make sure your hands are faster than little Julie can point.

4. Defy tradition

Candy corn is a traditional Halloween candy.  That is so yesterday at this point.

In fact, it’s literally yesterday on Nov. 1.

The point is, never buy candy corn, unless it’s for your roommate or significant other.  It’s almost always at the bottom, too hard to be eaten, but it’s the thought that counts when you give a gift.  They should be grateful.  Heck, just save it for Christmas and kill two birds with one stone.

5. Defend yourself

Finally, protect your stash.  Never use a shopping cart, because it’ll leave your supplies unattended.  I’ve played enough Oregon Trail to know that thieves are always ready to rob your wagon blind.

If you’re storing up for the winter, bring your roommate or significant other.  Now you can kill three birds with one stone by handing it to them at the store and saying, “Merry Christmas.”  That’ll even save a few bucks on wrapping paper.


Hopefully after getting back from pillaging many stores at 7 a.m. (you must strike while the weather is cold) you have won the day.  It might help to go to class afterward, though.  As thrilling as the story of your triumph may be, your GPA won’t reflect it.

And one last thing: make sure that if you take something from little Julie, big Julie isn’t your history professor. That tends to be a bit awkward.