Students should keep it safe, classy on Halloweekend

by Beacon Staff • October 27, 2011

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Annual Halloween debauchery.

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Check yourself before you wreck yourself.

What is it that makes Johnny Law think Halloweekend is any more dangerous than your average Vlad-and-Pabst-soaked Thursday through Sunday? Perhaps dressing up as someone else imbues the typical undergraduate with a unwarranted sense of invincibility—it wasn’t me who blacked out on Boylston. It was Batman.

Like the chime of spooky grandfather clockwork, the Boston Police Department graced our inboxes with its annual “Hey college kids, don’t be dumb this Halloween” e-mail yesterday. The missive was brimming like a cauldron with all manner of good intentions and—quite frankly, warranted—safety tips.

Halloween has lost its innocence. It happens rather suddenly, doesn’t it? One morning, you wake up and your beloved All Hallow’s Eve is a free-for-all drinking holiday, second only to St. Patty’s Day and—depending on your penchant for partying—Tuesday.

Years when the worst that could happen was a neighbor handing out pennies or tasteless granola bars are behind us. College students face a myriad of dangerous and compromising situations if they don’t set a game plan for their revelry.

As the BPD points out, selecting the right costume isn’t all about vanity. Trekking through a less-than-wholesome part of town is not an advisable time to wear your sexy TSA agent or Village People policeman costume. If you’ve got it, it’s not your civic duty to flaunt it.

And most certainly, don’t flaunt it alone. Keep your candy close, but your friends closer. If you want to be Ginger Spice, make sure you’ve got Sporty, Scary, Baby, and Posh at your side—there’s girl (and boy) power in numbers.

If you plan to get your nostalgia on with an old school trick-or-treating session, be reflective. It’s dark out there, so a few strips of shiny tape could mean the difference between successful street-roaming and an unwanted standoff with any assortment of motorized vehicles.

Most importantly, don’t use the frivolity of Halloween as an excuse to chug to excess. Treat it like any other weekend. And because the official holiday falls on a Monday this year, that gives you what, five whole days of celebration if you include tonight? Pace yourself.

We recommend visiting Sen. John Kerry in Louisburg Square for the choicest loot, but enjoying a Boston Halloween requires more than knowing who’s got the best candy. You’ve got to be smart. Please, have an awesome time, but use your noggin. Just because Ichabod Crane is headless doesn’t mean you have to be.