Everybody loves Halloween, except for demons wearing human masks, who hate fun and are lame. Protect yourself from demons! Surround yourself with fun people who want to make this the best Halloween party ever, instead of a metaphorical rock in the pillowcase.
Stock candy bowls in every room... strategically
This one’s so obvious it almost doesn’t need to be said. But hell forbid you be the one idiot who doesn’t stock the house with candies and then lose all your friends forever. Use them to your advantage: repel invaders from the kitchen by keeping the lousy sweets there, then guide them with candy of increasing quality to party central. Nothing anchors a room like chocolate and peanut butter.
Give your punch some punch
Fill a rubber glove with enough water to give it a hand shape. Stand it in a glass in your freezer to curl the fingers, or tie the end off with a rubber band and leave flat. Now you have an eerie claw grasping at punch-drinkers. But wait! You can make it glow in the dark safely by using tonic water and staging a black light over the punch bowl.
Summon the Great Pumpkin
Giant pumpkins aren’t that tasty, and they’ll cost a couple hundred bucks to buy, but if you can grow or get a good deal on one, look out, party-goers! You can cut the top off that sucker, fill it with ice, and stow all your beers in there for a cooler your guests will talk about forever after. Or, if you’ve got a sturdy table to support it, mount a tap in that gourd and dispense beer from your epic pumpkin keg. (For a more manageable version, do this with several flavors of beer using normal-sized sugar pumpkins.)
Use a fly swapper
As long as you’re at the punch bowl, might as well go for the ol’ bug trick. Dr. Hibbert may disapprove of Homer Simpson’s novelty fly cubes, but there’s nothing toxic about freezing some raisins in ice cubes for the same effect and a much tastier prize: mmmm, sugary raisins in your boozy punch. [drooling noise]
Send messages from beyond the looking-glass
Discreetly visit the bathroom a couple times during the night with some red lipstick. “CAN’T DIE,” you scrawl on your medicine cabinet mirror, and below that, “STILL HUNGRY.” Come back after a few people have visited, and wipe the message away. Then return to extend the narrative: “BEHIND YOU.” Continue this cycle until one of your guests nervously remarks, “It’s not funny anymore, it’s just lame.” Uh-huh. Lame. Just lik -- WHAT IS THAT BEHIND YOU, JANINE?
Scheme a theme
If you’re not throwing your party on October 31st proper, consider a costume theme. It’s a great way to unify the party, and most people can put together a fun, low-key costume that fits, whether it’s a movie everyone loves or something more interpretative, like puns, abstract ideas, or unrelated combinations. It takes some of the pressure off to have a great costume and just have a fun, silly one.
Fair warning: this one depends on the quality of your friends. If you think they’re going to half-ass it, you could be left high and dry... and not just because your abstract costume is “High & Dry.”
Remember to award the best costume
Guests are rightly proud of their costumes, unless they’re that guy from down the hall who just wears a rainbow afro wig and a sleeveless T-shirt with novelty glasses. (Who are you supposed to be, dude? A monstrous lack of effort?) It doesn’t have to be a big prize; it’s only the recognition that really counts. Perhaps a king-size candy bar?
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