What Would Peter Rollins Say? [Caption Contest]

What Would Peter Rollins Say? [Caption Contest] October 31, 2012

Tonight, the esteemed philosopher-theologian Peter Rollins will be at our house, and he’ll be answering the door and giving out candy to trick-or-treaters in our nice, suburban neighborhood.

But, what do you think that Pete will say to those impressionable children?

Best caption wins a book.

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  • “We’re all haunted houses. We’re all filled with ghosts.”

    • Michael Teston

      Absolutely Steve. Just spent a couple days with Peter R. and he talked about the “ghosts, being filled with them!” LOL

  • (In my best Irish accent…which isn’t very good)…

    Kids: “Trick or Treat!”
    Peter: “You know kids, you think that you are the ones wearing the masks, but I’m the one wearing the mask. I’m reminded of a story that’s told back in Ireland…”
    Kids: “ummm…Can we have some candy?”
    Peter: “Yes but isn’t that how religion functions? You are rewarded with treats for pretending to be something you’re not?”

    • Joey E.


  • Chris

    “I deny the (Great Pumpkin’s) resurrection. I deny the (Great Pumpkin’s) resurrection every time I hand out tracts instead of candy. I deny the (Great Pumpkin’s) resurrection every time I refuse to call our church event anything involving “Halloween”, but choose instead “Harvest Party!” or “Fall Fling! I deny the (Great Pumpkin’s) resurrection when my idea of watching a scary movie is watching “Left Behind.” “

    • This made me laugh out loud. I was going to submit and answer, however I can’t beat this one.

  • Jim

    I don’t know why you’re wearing costumes, your cognitive identity is a much better disguise.

  • Jay Werner

    You costume sucks … start learning to confront your own darkness
    This is homemade chocolate made without coco beans from African children
    Sorry no candy here…we are fighting against holidays that add to the injustice created by capitalism…so here is my book “Insurrection” but be careful it will ruin your life

  • “How do you like my Zizek costume?”

    “Tricks? My friend Kester can tell you all about tricksters.”

    “Stop stealing my candy you little buggers.”

    “Which one of you is dressed up as Shameus?”

    “I’m all out of candy but you can have one of my books. I have loads of them lying around here.”

  • Dave Burkum

    Trick OR Treat is a false dichotomy. The trick is the greatest treat of all.

  • “Hello, children. The assumption of your charming ritualized phrase is that we all want a Treat — but what if it’s really a Trick that we want? If you think about it, the real trick of eating candy is that the treat we thought we wanted to receive, is the trick we’ve always intended to give. So every Tr/eat is an (un)Trick. Anyway, in Ireland we don’t have any children. Here, have a beer.”

    • Dave Burkum

      “So every Tr/eat is an (un)Trick.”

      Well done!

  • Holy crap, in the 5 minutes it took me to write that, 1000 other people posted essentially the same thing! We are all dutiful disciples. Tricks and treats, indeed.

  • Evelyn

    Any attempt to moderate your intake of candy is reinforcing your parents’ unbelief. If you want to experience the fullness of life, eat the whole bag at once. Only then will you be able to confront the horror of your gluttonous selves.

  • Kids:”Trick or treat!”
    Rollins: “I believe/doubt that you (really?) meant trick and/or treat!”
    Kids: “(!/?)”

  • Patrick

    There’s just so many…

    “The only reason you’re wearing that mask is to mask the darkness and dite inside of you!”

    “I’ll give you some candy, but you can’t have me gold!”

    “You don’t know me?! I was the bass player in Driveshaft! I was on the bloody island with Jack and Kate!”

    Or in honor of his homeland, he might recite a limerick…

    “There once was a man from Belfast
    whose books would send you to hell fast.
    But alas, there’s no hell,
    it’s a projection as well,
    of the fear that your doubts about God cast.”

  • Dave O

    As Meister Eckhart says:
    “If the only prayer you ever say in your entire life is thank you, it will be enough.”

  • Phil Miller

    “To treat is human … to trick is divine.”

    • Dave Burkum


  • “[Costumes] become problematic when [worn] in a manner that would claim more than some provisional, pragmatic response to one’s im/material desire for sweets.”

  • Solmidog

    You know little girl, Nietzsche wore pajamas that were very similar to your outfit…

  • Eric E

    Kids: Trick or treat!
    Peter: Great costumes kids. Who are you supposed to be?
    Kid 1: I’m Spiderman!
    Kid 2: I’m a doctor!
    Kid 3! I’m a princess!
    Peter: Awesome! Here’s some candy!

    End scene.

    (Peter, of course, will say what everybody else in that situation says because there is a fantasy in operation here that can’t be directly acknowledged, at least, not at the time, even by Peter Rollins.)

  • Peter: “It’s not until you experience the realisation that there is no Candy that you really experience what it’s like to eat it.”

    Kids: “…”

    Peter: “It’s what Bonhoeffer called ‘Treatless Haloween.'”

    Kids: “Let’s go to Driscoll’s house. He gives out full-size candybars.”

  • Trick question Tony. Rollins would participate by dialectically doing the opposite of what adults do and go trick o treating himself.

  • JoeyS

    Great costumes! They are a more accurate reflection of the true self than the false self you dress up as every day. Here is some candy made from cocoa harvested by slaves who eventually rebel against the societal order that traps them causing them to wade into seedy occupations like piracy which causes consumer goods all over the western world to rise in price. Then your parents complain about how much your costume costs, buys it anyway, and thus the cycle continues. Just eat your candy.

  • Kids: “Trick or Treat”
    Rollins: “The split between what we say and what we do is a direct expression of irony. Something we see on, say, Halloween, where people dress up in the most flamboyant of costumes and acknowledge the most terrifying fears of our subconscious while simultaneously ridiculing it. Here people laugh at their fears mock the outfits they are wearing. They thus attack the very activity in which they are fully immersed. In daily life we engage constantly in this ironic gesture.”
    Kids: “Do you have chocolate?”

  • Enjoy this candy as a way of living, truly living, before you die.

  • Julie

    Pete: “Monsters! Argh! No, wait. As I gaze on you, Tigger, and you, Cat in the Hat, I see myself as the monster I am.”

  • drewsumrall

    “Truth has the structure of fiction–which is why I wear a mask that looks like me.”

  • Scot Miller

    Pete: “Hey, Batman, why so serious?”

  • “Everyday is Halloween, for we all wear masks and costumes. It’s only when November 1st comes and after the sugar buzz has worn off that we can finally remove our masks.”

  • Leslie

    “I don’t know how to answer that.”

    • Leslie

      Which may be one of the most powerful responses I have ever heard him (not) give.

  • Luke Allison

    “Why is no one wearing a Sonny Crockett costume?”

    “It is only through the trick that you can truly experience the treat.”

  • Garry S

    Never mind my lucky charms…take your damn candy…

  • Jay

    This is my mask.

  • JMW

    “The only way to celebrate Halloween is by *NOT* celebrating Halloween.”

  • Michele

    …and this is how (Not) to wear a costume…

  • “The only house that children will want to trick or treat at… is a burning one.”

  • Matthew

    Here’s your candy, children, kindly provided by my benefactors up in that mansion. Now remember, on November 11, at Deity club in Brooklyn, I’ll be speaking on unbelief at my next ikonNYC event. 7pm, don’t be late. And bring $15. You’ll all want to be there. What? Why yes, I am dressed up as a member of the Gestapo. How keen of you. such smart kids. Now, run along. See you in Brooklyn!

  • Derek C

    You think you look cute in that a costume?
    If you want candy from me you’re gonna have to try harder than that!
    You’re rubbish!
    While we’re at it, do you want to race?
    I’ll beat you every time!
    You’re rubbish!

    • Tommy O

      I was thinking the same thing!

      “Your parents love to tell you how great you are but it’s all crap. You’re rubbish! You’re small, weak and frail; you aren’t capable of caring for yourselves. You’re rubbish!”

  • Scot Miller

    “Hey, look at me, kids. I’m dressed up as Columbo!”

  • Kyle Kerley

    “The trick is there is no trick.”
    “The treat is there is no treat.”

  • Mike Truman

    “The trick is here. The trick is not here. The treat is… ”

    At which point sound would be lost, and he would simply mime the words as the children looked on in incomprehension.

    Then the cellphone of the adult accompanying the children would ring, and the caller would say “This is Ikon Belfast. Will you please go into the house and get the candy for the children”.

  • Ben

    You think you’re wearing a disguise, but really you’re not disguised enough.

  • Carl

    “Tony, it’s for you.” (Peter proceeds to sit back down on the vintage couch and help himself to another pint.)

  • Jason

    Kid: “We want some candy.”
    Pete, reading wrapper of a candy bar: “Nougat? Hardly. These things are chock full of nostalgia.”
    Kid: “Nostalgia sure does taste good Mister!”
    Pete: “You’re absolutely right little one. But Camus was right; it isn’t real. It’s what we create so that we never get a taste of bitter Reality. And isn’t that the struggle we all face? You should to come to Ikon when you’re tired of living a lie.”
    Kid: “What’s that Mister?”
    Pete: “It’s where we practice pyronutrition. We burn all the candy, and whatever is left is what we eat.”

  • LMC

    “Hope you didn’t buy that costume at Wal-mart”

  • “The real purpose of Halloween is not coming to houses to get candy, but going to houses, such as mine, and giving me candy. Kit Kats, specifically.”

  • Tvh

    “This candy is not really candy but a means to make you doubt the existence of candy so you can draw closer to the true meaning of candy.”

  • PR – “Tony, watch me play this trick on the children, ‘Children, which would you rather have, this shiny one pound coin? Or this wrankly old 5 pound note?'”

  • Dale Friesen

    Have a Guiness.

    It’s both a trick and a treat

  • Bryan O.

    “Take as much candy as you like kids. Eat till your hearts are content, but don’t be deceived by the lie that you can be satisfied. Just remember that you can never be satisfied, you are nothing, and you are all alone. Until you come to grips with this reality you will be eating yourself into childhood obesity and diabetes in order to numb your pain. Take as much candy as you can, so you can cover over the fact that you are nothing but a brain-sucking zombie.”

  • Eric E

    Which caption won?