At the risk of repeating myself for the umpteenth time, I hate Halloween.
Have I mentioned this lately?
Sure, sure, I love the lighted pumpkins, the cinnamon-and-spice scented candles and the adorable wee ones dressed as royalty, super heroes and um, Facebook pages.
I love the cider and donuts, the nine millionth airing of "It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown" and the cute little e-mail cards that transform a spider into haunted house.
I love the way families divide candy distribution and collection duties and how teenagers suddenly revert back to pre-pubescence for a night, all in the name of a few bags of Skittles and an Almond Joy bar.
I love greeting the offspring of my siblings and closest friends and pulling out special, homemade and overstuffed treat bags for them and watching their eyes light up like the harvest moon.
Yeah, that's all I got.
Because, here's what I hate about Halloween: everything else.
The creepy music; the constant airing of old horror movies that scare the bejeepers out of me still (30 years after their cinematic debut); and all the things - dead and un-dead - that lurk, hover and hang about this time of year.
I mean, if my kooky neighbor up the street erected life-sized mannequins of Jason Voorhees, Freddy Krueger, Michael Myers and that wicked evil clown from the Stephen King move "It" or had his buddy lie in an honest-to-goodness coffin in his driveway any other night of the year, he'd be in a nice padded room someplace with no sharp objects any place in sight, right?
What I'm telling you is that I can barely look at Jamie Leigh Curtis in those Activia yogurt commercials without hearing her scream somewhere deep in my subconscious.
Look, the whole loving to be scared is a concept that has always escaped me. Paying money to walk through some creaky old building in the pitch black and have someone jump out at you with a fake ax, pretending he's going to hack you up into itty bitty pieces? I mean, what's not to love?
How this day, which completely creeps and freaks me out, has become such a bona fide holiday in the eyes of so man all across the country is truly a mystery. Seeking out fear? I just don't get it.
But, then again, maybe it's human nature.
Said my friend Charleen Scott, originally of northern Trumbull County, "Look, what's the first game children learn to play together? Hide and seek! Somehow, we've managed to create a culture where being scared and having fun go hand in hand to some extent."
She may be right.
Now that I think of it, most kid games are rooted in the macabre in one way or another. We start with the morose "Ring Around the Rosie," then graduate to "Cops and Robbers," (at least there are good guys!) and move up to laser tag, which is basically a game of sniper. Yeah, I guess they're all pretty scary.
And children's books and movies? Well, let's start with "Hansel and Gretel" and "The Three Little Pigs" proceed through all of Aesop's horrific fables and wind up with "Alice's Adventures in Wonderland." Again, fright is a common theme.
Heck, don't even get me started on how Disney movies always leave kids stranded, abandoned or orphaned. OK, OK, so scaring ourselves is a national pastime with a long-seeded history steeped in tradition. Doesn't mean I have to like it.
Here's looking forward to Thanksgiving!
Kimerer is a Tribune Chronicle columnist. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.