There are holidays and, then, there are HOLIDAYS. Thanksgiving and Christmas tend to top the charts but Halloween has to be an ever-so-close runner up. So, why does Halloween beat all the other movers and shakers? Think about it, kids get the day off from school on Columbus Day – in spite of a ton of controversy. On the other hand, All Hallows Eve, is loads of fun but no one gets the day off.
Then again, Halloween is not without controversy. Over the past several of years, some Halloween costumes have found themselves in the news. Instead of fun fantasy or scary spookdom, some disguises are nothing short of offensive. So, here’s some simple advice, when it comes to Halloween, don’t be a yahoo.
In case you are wondering, what’s a yahoo? Say the word a few times, out loud with enthusiasm. Now, think about the kind of person who might fit that description and you’ll get the picture. If you’re still not sure; it all boils down to this – don’t choose an offensive costume. Traditional or inventive, have fun with it but show some common sense. Show some common courtesy.
As I understand it; there are some politicians, pundits and their fans out there who are getting tired of political correctness. With or without air quotes, politically correct has somehow or other become an insult. But wait a minute there; back up the train. Accusing someone of political correctness is like accusing them of common courtesy. How or why would anyone suggest that being polite is a bad thing?
I don’t know about your mom but Mrs. Nye didn’t raise her kids to be rude. She didn’t raise them to be bullies or to offend people that didn’t look, act or talk the way they did. No, Mrs. Nye raised her kids to be pumpkins and fairy princesses, clowns and super heroes, witches, vampires, ghosts and goblins.
Which brings us back to the initial question, why does Halloween beat all those other holidays in the top of the pops charts? Easy – it’s the costumes. It’s fun to dress up. It’s fun to pretend you are someone or something else. It’s fun to give your imagination free rein and come up with an amazing costume. It’s fun to show how clever you are. Dress up is part of being a kid and being a kid again.
So have a ball. Throw caution to the wind; let your imagination run wild. Be silly, be scary, be surprising. One of my favorite costumes of all time was a group effort. Three or four friends dressed up as a construction site. One put on a yellow slicker, reflective vest and hardhat while the others dressed up as traffic cones, complete with flashing lights. At least for me, it was clever, funny and memorable because – how in the world do you come up with such an idea? To be a traffic cone, a TRAFFIC CONE, for Halloween?
This year and every year, forget stereotypes. Black face and Nazis are more outdated than your great-grandfather’s fedora. However, a fedora could be the start of something interesting. Or maybe a bowler? Anyway, if you are unsure about a costume, ask yourself, “What would my kids or grandkids or future kids or grandkids think?” Would they laugh? Or, would they squirm uncomfortably and, then, shrug, sigh and admit that, as much as they love you; you’re a yahoo.
Happy Halloween and bon appétit!
Everyone likes a cozy dish on a chilly night. These spicy vegetable bowls are quick and easy at the end of a busy day – or after trick or treating! If you like, add tofu or shrimp or slices of leftover chicken or pork. Enjoy!
- Vegetable oil
- 1 pound broccoli, cut in bite-sized pieces
- 1 pound mushrooms, sliced or chopped
- 1/2 onion, finely chopped
- 1-2 carrots, peeled and finely chopped
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1-inch piece ginger, peeled and minced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tablespoons or to taste sriracha
- 2 tablespoons tahini or smooth peanut butter
- 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon fish sauce
- 1/4 teaspoon brown sugar
- 1 cup chicken stock
- 12-16 ounces tofu or leftover chicken or pork (optional)
- 1 cup rice or 8 ounces Chinese or udon noodles
- 2 teaspoons sesame oil
- 1/4 cup peanuts, toasted and finely chopped or toasted sesame seeds
- 1/4 cup thinly sliced scallions
- 1/4 cup roughly chopped cilantro
Lightly coat a large wok or skillet with vegetable oil and heat over medium-high. Add the broccoli, mushrooms, onion and carrots and tossing frequently, cook until the onion is translucent. Add the ginger and garlic and, tossing frequently, cook for 2 minutes more.
Stir in the sriracha, tahini, vinegar, soy sauce, fish sauce and sugar and toss to combine. Stir in the chicken stock. If using, add the tofu, chicken or pork, toss to combine. Bring to a simmer, reduce the heat and simmer until the broccoli is tender-crisp, about 5 minutes.
Meanwhile, cook the noodles or rice according to package directions.
Transfer the noodles or rice to a large platter or individual bowls. Stir the sesame oil to the vegetables. Top the noodles or rice with vegetables, sprinkle with peanuts, scallions and cilantro and serve immediately.
Print-friendly version of this recipe.
- One Year Ago – Cheesy Roasted Cauliflower & White Bean Soup
- Two Years Ago – Savory Smashed Sweet Potatoes
Three Years Ago – Creamy Polenta with Mushroom & Kale Ragù
- Four Years Ago – Butternut Squash Crostini with Goat Cheese & Balsamic Reduction
- Five Years Ago – Moroccan Spiced Vegetables & Chickpeas with Couscous
- Six Years Ago – Smashed or Mashed Potatoes
- Seven Years Ago – Apple Muffins
- Eight Years Ago – Mixed Greens with Warm Roasted Squash
- Nine Years Ago – Spinach Ricotta Pie
- Ten Years Ago – Seared Scallops with Lentils
- Eleven Years Ago – Tomato, Olive & Feta Tart
Or Click Here! for a complete list of and links to all the recipes on this blog!
What’s your favorite Halloween costume? Feel free to share!
Want more? I’ve got links to lots more to read, see & cook. © Susan W. Nye, 2019