I recently found out that in many areas of the United States, Europe and Canada, October the 30th is observed as an evening to take a degree of license to play pranks and do mischief to their neighbors. It is known by many names. Mischief night or Gate night are the most common titles but it is also known as Devil’s Night, Goosey Night, Cabbage Night and Mizzy Night in some areas.
Most of these pranks are harmless and only a minor annoyance. Examples of these pranks include toilet papering yards and buildings, egging cars, people and homes, using soap to write on windows, “forking” yards, smashing pumpkins and jack-o’-lanterns, and the ever-popular “Ding-Dong Ditch” where people ring doorbells or knock on doors, and then run and hide somewhere nearby.
More destructive and clearly unwanted examples have been known to include powder-bombing and setting off consumer fireworks, spray-painting of buildings and homes and outright arson of abandoned or vacant buildings and homes. Detroit, Michigan was particularly hard-hit by Devil’s Night arson and vandalism throughout the 1980s.
Here in Tennessee we don’t have such a tradition and quite frankly, I am just glad. Don’t get me wrong we have our share of pranks such as those mentioned above in the annoying category, but luckily we have practically none of those mentioned in the destructive set.
Just a little tidbit I ran across and thought I would share. Happy Haunting!