Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Halloween Trivia

Halloween Holiday Trivia

* Orange and black are Halloween colors because orange is associated with the Fall harvest and black is associated with darkness and death.
* Jack o’ Lanterns originated in Ireland where people placed candles in hollowed-out turnips to keep away spirits and ghosts on the Samhain holiday.
* Pumpkins also come in white, blue and green. Great for unique monster carvings!
* Halloween was brought to North America by immigrants from Europe who would celebrate the harvest around a bonfire, share ghost stories, sing, dance and tell fortunes.
* Tootsie Rolls were the first wrapped penny candy in America.
* The ancient Celts thought that spirits and ghosts roamed the countryside on Halloween night. They began wearing masks and costumes to avoid being recognized as human.
* Halloween candy sales average about 2 billion dollars annually in the United States.
* Chocolate candy bars top the list as the most popular candy for trick-or-treaters with Snickers #1.
* Halloween is the 2nd most commercially successful holiday, with Christmas being the first.
* Bobbing for apples is thought to have originated from the roman harvest festival that honors Pamona, the goddess of fruit trees.
* Black cats were once believed to be witch's familiars who protected their powers.

Monster Trivia & Folklore

* Signs of a werewolf are a unibrow, hair palms, tattoos, and a long middle finger.
* Vampires are mythical beings who defy death by sucking the blood of humans.
* In 1962, the Count Dracula Society was founded.
* To this day, there are vampire clubs and societies with people claiming to be real vampires.
* There really are so-called vampire bats, but they're not from Transylvania. They live in Central and South America and feed on the blood of cattle, horses and birds.
* Many people still believe that gargoyles were created by medieval architects and stone carvers to ward off evil spirits.

Halloween Movie Details

* "Halloween" was made in only 21 days in 1978 on a very limited budget.
* The movie was shot in the Spring and used fake autumn leaves.
* The mask used by Michael Meyers in the movie "Halloween" was actually William Shatner's mask painted white.
* The character Laurie Strode, played by Jamie Lee Curtis was named after John Carpenter's first girlfriend.
* While the setting for the story is in Illinois, the vehicles have California license plates.
* Halloween is on October 31st, the last day of the Celtic calendar. It was originally a pagan holiday, honoring the dead. Holloween was referred to as All Hallows Eve and dates back to over 2000 years ago.

Creepy Tidbits

* If you see a spider on Halloween, it is the spirit of a loved on watching over you.
* Worldwide, bats are vital natural enemies of night-flying insects.
* The common little brown bat of North America has the longest life span for a mammal it's size, with a life span averaging 32 years.
* In about 1 in 4 autopsies, a major disease is discovered that was previously undetected.
* The Ouija Board ended up outselling the game of Monopoly in its first full year at Salem. Over two million copies of the Ouija Board were shipped.

Other fun trivia

Q: Why are many coin banks shaped like pigs?

A: Long ago, dishes and cookware in Europe were made of a dense orange
clay called "pygg". When people saved coins in jars made of this clay, the
jars became known as "pygg banks." When an English potter misunderstood
the word, he made a bank that resembled a pig. And it caught on.

Q: Did you ever wonder why dimes, quarters and half dollars have notches,
while pennies and nickels do not?

A: The US Mint began putting notches on the edges of coins containing gold
and silver to discourage holders from shaving off small quantities of the
precious metals. Dimes, quarters and half dollars are notched because they
used to contain silver. Pennies and nickels aren't notched because the
metals they contain are not valuable enough to shave..

Q: Why do men's clothes have buttons on the right while women's clothes
have buttons on the left?

A: When buttons were invented, they were very expensive and worn primarily
by the rich. Because wealthy women were dressed by maids, dressmakers put
the buttons on the maid's right. Since most people are right-handed, it is
easier to push buttons on the right through holes on the left. And that's
where women's buttons have remained since.

Q: Why do X's at the end of a letter signify kisses?

A: In the Middle Ages, when many people were unable to read or write,
documents were often signed using an X. Kissing the X represented an oath
to fulfill obligations specified in the document. The X and the kiss
eventually became synonymous.

Q: Why is shifting responsibility to someone else called "passing the

A: In card games, it was once customary to pass an item, called a buck,
from player to player to indicate whose turn it was to deal. If a player
did not wish to assume the responsibility, he would "pass the buck" to the
next player.

Q: Why do people clink their glasses before drinking a toast?

A: It used to be common for someone to try to kill an enemy by offering
him a poisoned drink. To prove to a guest that a drink was safe, it became
customary for a guest to pour a small amount of his drink into the glass
of the host. Both men would drink it simultaneously. When a guest trusted
his host, he would then just touch or clink the host's glass with his own.

Q: Why are people in the public eye said to be "in the limelight"?

A: Invented in 1825, limelight was used in lighthouses and stage lighting
by burning a cylinder of lime which produced a brilliant light. In the
theatre, performers on stage "in the limelight" were seen by the audience
to be the center of attention.

Q: Why do ships and aircraft in trouble use "mayday"as their call for

A: This comes from the French word m'aidez -meaning "help me" -- and is
pronounced "mayday,"

Q: Why is someone who is feeling great "on cloud nine"?

A: Types of clouds are numbered according to the altitudes they attain,
with nine being the highest cloud If someone is said to be on cloud nine,
that person is floating well above worldly cares.

Q: Why are zero scores in tennis called "love"?

A: In France , where tennis first became popular, a big, round zero on
scoreboard looked like an egg and was called "l'oeuf," which is French for
"egg." When tennis was introduced in the US , Americans pronounced it

Q: In golf, where did the term "Caddie" come from?

A: When Mary, later Queen of Scots, went to France as a young girl (for
education &survival), Louis, King of France, learned that she loved the
Scot game "golf." So he had the first golf course outside of Scotland
built for her enjoyment. To make sure she was properly chaperoned (and
guarded) while she played, Louis hired cadets from a military school to
accompany her. Mary liked this a lot and when she returned to Scotland
(not a very good idea in the long run), she took the practice with her. In
French, the word cadet is pronounced 'ca- day' and the Scots changed it
into "caddie."


  1. Now that's what I call a lot of interesting information -- thanks for sharing! :)

  2. Very cool information, Michele! Thanks for sharing that, and have a Happy Halloween...:)