choose and defend

Choose and Defend: Fireworks or Jack-O’-Lanterns?

bayasaa / Flickr Creative Commons

bayasaa / Flickr Creative Commons

Independence Day — a time to reflect on the founding of our great nation by eating burned hot dogs and blowing shit up.

I love fireworks, always have. As a kid I opened my very first bank account for the purpose of saving up for the Fourth of July and, admittedly, to set some money aside in the event that KISS released another live album.

When the big day came my parents took me to one of South Carolina’s many fireworks stands, and I dropped the whole wad on firecrackers, bottle rockets, smoke bombs, Roman candles — the whole bit.

My fondness for blowing shit up didn’t end with childhood, either. As a college kid I worked at a fireworks stand one summer, which led to piling hundreds of dollars worth of sparkly, boomy things onto a raft and setting the night on fire. I wrote a story about that night.

The magic of the holidays eventually fades, though. No matter how in touch we may be with the kid inside, the simple truth is that the day comes when we must put away childish things.

Or does it?

This week you must choose between two of childhood’s most colorful holidays. No cheating — no “I love both” or “I’ll dress like a Roman candle” — you must choose and then defend your choice in the comments section below. Failure to do so will result in an M-80 in your home plumbing.

Would you rather enjoy:

– An evening of Independence Day fireworks, or

bayasaa / Flickr Creative Commons

bayasaa / Flickr Creative Commons

— A night of Halloween candy gathering?

Rich S. / Flickr Creative Commons

Rich S. / Flickr Creative Commons

Answers must fit inside a trick-or-treat bag, and come on people: Let’s make Laura B. proud.

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3 replies »

  1. Always Halloween! Piles of candy, scary movies, fall weather. I’ve never enjoyed hotdogs or blowing stuff up.


  2. This is a no-brainer. You can’t eat fireworks. Well, I guess you could, but you’d get some major heartburn.


  3. I say the 4th of July, with lots of fireworks and patriotism. It celebrates something truly important—all the good stuff about our country while we briefly forget the ugly parts.

    We didn’t have fireworks for sale in my hometown so my family would go to the municipal celebration. For me it was love at first sight, though what I really wanted was to be the one who lit them up. Many years later I moved to a city that allowed the sale of fireworks, even though, this being California, they were of the “safe and sane” variety. I still think they were pretty awesome. For many years I hosted a 4th of July fireworks and picnic party in the front yard of my home. We always had a great turnout of friends and family that was special in itself. And then I set off the fireworks to a music tape I created each year. My home was on a corner and many of my neighbors used to gather and watch from the other three corners.

    My favorite year was when one of my friends brought her two sons, who were about 8 and 10. They were thrilled when I gave them the honor of lighting the fireworks, of course under my careful supervision. The boys had a great time and I got to momentarily revisit and rewrite my childhood.

    And then there’s Halloween. I’m not saying it’s no fun, but it could never match the 4th of July. We lived in a nice neighborhood but we seemed to always bring home mostly candy I didn’t like—the kind you buy cheaply and in large quantities. “Thrill” and “Excitement” are two words I’d never associate with those memories.


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