If, like me, you’ve substituted candy for one of your daily meals, you know that, despite the zealous scholarship, candy is no good for you.
Indeed, no dietician in the world will tell you pure sugar is good for any reason save averting diabetic shock. Thus, in an effort to avoid raising the next generation of jittery, miserable sugar addicts, Inverse would like to offer you these 10 non-candy substitutes to give trick or treaters on Halloween:
1. USB flash drives. The future will be all about storage, and this is a great way to get kids thinking about the steady march of Moore’s law. And did you know that flash drives can now hold up to 3 gigs? That’s six times more than my first Gateway 2000 computer. Kids these days don’t know how rough we had it.
2. Temporary tattoos. Kids love tattoos — and, increasingly, adults do, too. You may be putting them on a path they will one day regret; or, you may teach them that the best body decor is the sort that wears off before Thanksgiving.
3. Kumquats. Apples are the yearly victims of urban legends and media hype about crones putting razor blades in them. Bananas are ungainly. Grapefruit are punishment food for anyone under 18. Grapes leak. No one is talking about the kumquat, the “little gold gem of the citrus family.” They’re small, they’ll hold up under the weight of a heavily laden candy bag, and they’re slightly healthier than candy. And they’re just coming into season!
4. Rubber balls. Forgiving the choking hazard, bouncy rubber balls are something kids can play with for hours, or until they get lost in the street and roll into a sewer.
5. Glowsticks. Reasonably cool to a kid, and a brilliantly safe accoutrement in the eyes of parents. Thank the proliferation of hard party drugs for their ubiquity and low cost.
6. Miniature copies of the Tao Te Ching. The tao that can be named is not the eternal tai. Not only is it a book containing infinite wisdom, it is way less divisive, and ubiquitous, than the Bible!
7. Bottled water. Trick-or-treating can be dehydrating, especially because eating candy and screaming and running with a nine-pound pillowcase full of kumquats can be superdehydrating. And let’s be real, everyone else aside from you will be giving out candy, so kids will need a refresher.
8. Mini-flashlights. My dad still gives out flashlights every Christmas. And the more I stumble through dark houses and trip myself, the more I understand why.
9. Small packets of tissues. Kids cry a lot, have you noticed that? Even when they’re holding themselves together, their sinuses leak like a rusty gutter. In fact, the only thing they do more than cry is get sick, especially as the weather cools, which is why you should pair this with …
10. Small bottles of hand sanitizer. Your local teacher will thank you. Just hope your windows like eggs.