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Posts Tagged ‘Halloween’

rhubarb

A memory of spring...

The omnivores at New Old Tradition Halloween sunk their teeth into the sweet and succulent oven barbecued chicken legs. A tasty treat we took between our fingers and ripped apart with our teeth, connecting us quickly to our primal roots. We are thankful for the tender meat which nourished us and hope that the humble preparation was enough  to honor the sacrifice of the beasts.

However, Revelers who abstain from the consumption of animal life should not despair… because in this case, like so many others, the secret was in the sauce… and the sauce in this case revealed a connection to the seasons, to simple technology barely changed for centuries, and to the discerning palates of previous generations.

Recipe for Victorian Rhubarb Barbecue Sauce to follow…

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greenwood1

This year’s Halloween stretched beyond the typical single evening and spilled over into a handful of days and nights, which I must admit, had a tremendous impact on me. Not only did I experience the visceral effects of shifting appearances while bending my body to the most intense percussion ever, but I also got a potent sense of Halloween’s gravitational pull toward impermanence, transition, and release. Much of this I felt while wandering Brooklyn’s Greenwood Cemetery on a lazy Sunday covered in cool gray clouds.

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guests1

The arrival of Halloween’s guest of honor is a much anticipated event in any home celebrating the New Old Halloween Tradition. This year the Hermetic Review‘s very own Molly Q, along with her wonderful roommate Angelica, took on the responsibility of transporting Jack of the Lanterns who, with the help of both Molly and Angelica, looked his absolute finest.

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Effort

From greater effort comes greater rewards.

Central to New Old Traditions is The Feast. We come together to sing, reflect, and celebrate while along the way we awaken our senses through the food we make for each other. Indeed, the eating of foods made by ourselves and shared with each other brings necessity, importance, and giving together in an instant. And so, ALL of our senses… those that we use to understand the world (taste, smell, touch, etc.) and those we use to place ourselves in it (connection, expressions, thanks) are nourished from the moment we arrive to the warm home, bearing our covered dishes, equally excited for the taste and smells of what others brought as we are to reveal our own contributions.

At New Old Halloween 2009, the meal came together as a well coursed production of warming fall dishes. Details, after the jump.

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revelers2

Halloween signifies the inversion of social norms, and is a time to subvert all dead energy that pesters the living. Taboos, inhibitions, closeted skeletons are all given the opportunity to expose themselves if they so desire. To this end, Revelers in the New Old Tradition take on a-typical roles and flaunt their alter-egos in an effort to play coy with what ails ’em. Some, like those pictured above, choose a visually subtle approach. Others flirt with total abandonment, eschewing all links to their socially constructed identities. In either case, what matters most is making sure every last hint of cumbersome dead energy you’ve latched onto (habits, roles, perceived limitations) is kept safely at bay.

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halloween_09_1

The New Old Traditions are an earthy bunch of holidays largely based around the progressions of the sun and the moon. As such, decorations that represent what’s happening outside are much appreciated, and allow for the gnarled outside to inform our squishy-gnarled inside. Twigs, leaves, lighting, and punch.

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lazarusWhile deciding on my costume it became clear that by wrapping my head up and donning my thobe I was skirting much too close to being a zombiefied Muslim or Sikh, which while unique, is pretty culturally insensitive.

However, just as we were leaving I realized that if I took the head wrap down and threw on a pair of ill sandals I could easily drape myself into Lazarus, risen from the dead, if only for one biblical evening.

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