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Halloween is a wonderful celebration for young people. But in Ireland, where it originated, and in the States, guys, not here in Germany. Here, it sucks. There is no tradition, and it just doesn’t work.

My mother sewed me my first costume at age two, and I went as a green Peter Pan. At four I got another fairy costume, this time with pink lacy wings made from a clothes hanger. It took me until puberty to cross over to the Dark Side. The routine was easy: I got together with friends, usually under the guidance of a parent or older brother or sister, and we would go from door to door saying “Trick or Treat.” Then we’d collect candy bars and get incredibly sick from all the sweets. Heaven. My father, on the other hand, would stand at our door and hand children apples, which they would accept more or less politely and then throw into the bushes (of course). It’s amazing that our garden didn’t turn into an orchard.

Thinking back, the best party I ever gave was a Halloween Party at age 17. We lived in a very big house, and my parents hid upstairs in bed and pulled the pillows over their heads, like good little parents. Downstairs I moved all of the furniture out, set up a large keg of beer, a huge pot of chili and tons of chips, a record player and my extensive record collection …  and the whole neighborhood came. Costumes included a boy wearing his mother’s wedding gown, two guys in golf clothes who putted across the dance floor without speaking to anyone, a boy and a girl who arrived separately from one another in 50s clothes and promptly fell in love, assorted vampires and zombies and monsters, of course, and a man in a gorilla costume. I never did figure out who he was. I think 70 people came, and we had a blast.

These days not everyone goes in for my brand of minimalist fun. More money is spent on Halloween, with its decorations and costumes, than on any other celebration except Christmas.

But Halloween in Germany? No way. Forget it. Boycott it. Down with German Halloween!