The days are getting shorter, the air is getting crisper, and the pumpkins are getting spicier—indicating that the beloved season of fall is finally upon us. This season, that is synonymous with pumpkins and all things autumnal, is also known as spooky season.

Disclaimer: I proudly claim to be a spooky season hater and you can't change my mind. I love autumn but have to endure spooky season along with it, unfortunately.

Fall is my favourite season—bring on the autumn fashion, PSLs, weather, and everything else. However, Halloween can just stay out of the picture.  

Spooky season is the annoying younger sister of autumn that has to tag along everywhere. It’s not even a government holiday so you don’t even get the day off. The only good thing about Halloween happens the day after Halloween when all the unsold candy is 50% off.

I cannot comprehend what is enjoyable about being scared or spooked. It is universally considered a negative emotion and people avoid feeling it except in October, when people line themselves up willingly to get their pants scared off. That concept alone is wild to me. 

I mean, isn’t real life scary enough? I suppose with how many people love it, there must be some appeal that I’m clearly missing.

Regardless, as your resident Halloween hater, I’ve come up with some tips and tricks (no pun intended) for those of you like me who want to get through what’s left of spooky season unscathed.

1. Avoid walking at night

During the summer, I love walking my dog after sundown because it’s cooler, less busy, and more peaceful. Until one day, you’re peacefully walking your dog and you look around to see floating skeletons, ghosts, and various other Halloween decorations in people’s yards. It is so jarring to walk by a tree and suddenly have a light up devil face in your face. Do yourself a favour and switch to morning/afternoon walks.

2. Start binge watching Gilmore Girls

It’s the perfect show for this time of year, and I will not be hearing any arguments at this time. The entertainment industry tries to monopolize on spooky season and you get a surplus of content that is creepy, disturbing, scary, or horrible or a mixture of all. Instead, consider focusing your attention on something that will give you fall vibes while making you feel warm on the inside. Let Lorelai and Rory take your worries away.

3. Start an early countdown to Christmas

It’s a great way to mentally bypass spooky season altogether. Just focus on the upcoming joy and cheer. Get yourself an October advent calendar, I’m sure it’s not difficult since Costco starts stocking for Christmas in September now. It’s almost like everyone wants to bypass spooky season? (one can hope)

The tips above work great for introverts, but there’s plenty of spooky season hating extroverts, like me, as well.

Throwing a party or a get-together yourself is a sure shot way to avoid going to someone else’s party that will leave you with nightmares.  Here are some scaredy-cat friendly autumnal activities that you, your family and/or friends call all be a part of.

1. Host a movie night

There are plenty of wholesome Halloween movies to choose from and when you’re the host, you set the tone and ambience. Get your friends together, make a charcuterie board and watch some movies. Here are my favourites: Hocus Pocus (a new one just came out this year!), Coco, Beetlejuice, The Addams Family, Rocky Horror Picture Show, and the Harry Potter movie of your choice.-.

Pro Tip: You can carve pumpkins or bake while watching the movies too, 10/10 recommend

2. Go to a pumpkin patch

It’s a daytime activity and you can pick out pumpkins to carve for your epic at-home movie night. There’s delicious food and adorable animals to pet. You can’t go wrong with this one. 

All this to say, you can still have fun during spooky season if you’re prepared. It’s important to figure out your threshold and the exact things you like and dislike. For example, I love psychological thrillers and true crime, and I have no problem with blood or gore. However, I can’t handle scary and paranormal tropes or jump scares. 

Lean into the things you can handle, and stay clear of the rest to make the most of a season you hate.

If none of these tips and tricks work for you, then you can always try to lecture people about paganism and the history of witchcraft any chance you get. This way people will stop inviting you and you can avoid the whole thing. However, I bear no responsibility for the repercussions of this tactic after spooky season is over.

Let’s unite and normalize the hating of spooky season, together.

About the author

Gurshabad Kang

Gurshabad’s educational background in Biology and Psychology is inspired by her lifelong pursuit to seek and decipher the human connection. She loves McDonald’s fries, long walks on the beach, and telling people how to correctly pronounce her name. She regularly forces her friends to sit in her car & record a podcast aptly named Sitting In The Car. You can find her but more importantly her dog, @gurshabadkang on all platforms.

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