European countries generally do a lot right, from education to health care to gun control. So I’m not over here pining for much from the US. Except for one thing: Halloween. Europeans simply don’t care about Halloween, even though it’s one of the best holidays of the year. So I don’t understand why it hasn’t caught on here. Especially because Europeans are open to adopting a lot of other things that are not nearly as good. Here are a few of them:
1. Black Friday
Obviously Europe doesn’t have a Thanksgiving. But somehow, the marketing madness of after-Thanksgiving Day sales has made it across the Atlantic. Though it’s not as intense as it is in the US, there are discounts on everything from electronics to clothes, both in store and online. Thankfully, the violent shopping mobs are not as popular.
2. El Dia de los Muertos
You may not see people in costume on the 31st. But two days later, they’ll be rocking the sugar skull makeup and flowers that you’d typically see in Mexico or in bad tattoos. European countries already celebrate All Saints Day, which is the Anglo version of the Day of the Dead. But they’re oddly fond of the Mexican Day of the Dead traditions. So instead of celebrating a holiday where everyone can show off a unique look, scary or funny or clever, they celebrate a day where everyone gets to wear the same boring makeup.
3. Pumpkin spice everything
This one I’m not even mad about because I had my first Starbucks pumpkin spice latte this year and it’s just as good as basic white girls said it was. So good, in fact, that the trend has taken off. You can buy pumpkin spice smoothies and coffee everywhere in the fall. It’s pretty amazing, but it’s still not better than drinking it while dressed as a giant lobster.
4. American flags and solo cups
Though no one wants to dress up for Halloween, they will wear USA t-shirts, baseball caps, and drink from solo cups for American themed parties. It’s like a caricature of our culture that’s not totally wrong so we can’t even be mad. But of all the interesting things you can dress up as, is a douchebag in an American flag tank top really that good?
5. Fast food
Come on, you won’t warm up to Halloween but you’ll put a McDonald’s on every corner? It’s like they’re purposefully appropriating the worst things about American culture. Sometimes I pass by what looks like a nice restaurant full of people before realizing it’s a KFC. So I stop in and have a Chicken Zinger Burger to make myself feel better about not having a real Halloween.