The vast influence of American culture over the world is something you can slice through, smell and see with just a walk around Sofia on Halloween. The capital city of Bulgaria – the Eastern European country that stays in the shadow of it’s post-communistic social issues, is getting full of costumed people at the end of October. One big difference is that unlike in the U.S., most of the costumed people who wander the streets in zombie, witch or vampire fashion on that day aren’t children.
Celebrating Halloween is a funny thing. We all live in a world where masks are part of our daily routine. We cherish them and even switch them pretty often because we own a few masks for every occasion. With that in mind is a bit hard to imagine a character that will scare the evil spirits and win you a candy.
That’s why I came up with an idea. I believe that, unlike the bad Halloween outfits, the thing that’ll scare the hell out of everyone is putting down our masks. Getting rid of the happy Facebook persona, the witty Twitter character and the artsy Instagram self and being what we really are deep inside the shell of prejudices, social norms and self censorship. Such an approach to Halloween will make the celebrations something to be scared of, something to wait impatiently even if you know you won’t feel good at the moment. More importantly it can help people start knowing each other and themselves better.
After all, the scariest thing is to be really open about yourself. The reason is that we’re always scared of being cast out of the tribe and left alone with our ugly selves. Probably that’s the reason for America’s cultural dominance over our post-communistic society. We don’t want to be left out again. We just want to play with the cool kids, like every other kid on the block.