Disclaimer: Do not try this at home!
I know this is a few days late but it just came to mind.
My Dad would amuse my brothers and me with stories he told about how he celebrated Halloween when he was a kid. My Mother would let us know these stories were for entertainment only and we were not to emulate his behavior in this regard.
Most of his exploits were pretty benign being done back in the mid-1920s. He taught me how to string a button and get it spinning very fast like a flywheel. A great way to terrify and “trick” the unsuspecting occupants of an “non-treating” home was to get the button spinning and then press it up to a window pane. The noise it produced was startling, bizarre and incomprehensible to the victims of the prank.
I don’t know about then, but nowadays a young goblin is taking his chances on getting shot for doing such mischief.
The really funny story he told was about the mean man at the end of the street who attempted to squelch the trick or treating by blockading the street and standing with his arms crossed defying the children from crossing his barrier. My Dad would laugh as he described the look on the old man’s face as, undaunted, the crowd of twenty or so kids charged him while screaming for all they were worth. His face changed from defiance to doubt and then fear as he realized the kids would not stop. He finally retreated into his home and the kids took over the night.
Perhaps this same man was the recipient of this other prank. My Dad said he and some friends filled a paper bag with fresh dog waste and put it on his front step. They set it on fire and rang the doorbell. When the man came out and saw the burning bag he, of course started stomping on it to put out the fire and covered himself with dog waste.
Such are the innocent pranks of our parents.