Friday Fluff: Let’s Talk Hallowe’en

Discussion can get pretty heavy around here — even if we weren’t talking about eating disorders half the time, there’s nothing like trenchant media analysis to bring you uncomfortably close to bigotry and misogyny. So after the mega-popular names post, Kate thought we might leaven the discussion (and give our sharp, funny commentariat a chance to shine) with regular injections of fluff. I’ll start!

I want to talk Hallowe’en, people. We’ve already seen the depths to which costuming can sink, but if you’re anything like me, you’re really excited about dressing up in something that doesn’t make light of mental disorders and fucked-up food behaviors. If you’re anything like me, you also haven’t done a lick of planning for either your costume or your party. (Last year we started a tradition of Spooky Brunch, but I haven’t thought about it at ALL this year.)

So what’s your best costume? What’s the best one you’ve ever seen? What’s your favorite Hallowe’en activity or tradition? Do you still trick-or-treat? If you’re outside the US, what’s your dress-up occasion and what do you do for that? What are you going as this year? And most importantly, what should I go as? I’m thinking either a peacock or a ship’s figurehead, both of which would involve expensive wigs (which I need to have ordered, like, last week) and elaborate makeup, which I like. Last year I was a tree, which was one of my favorite costumes ever — I built the costume around a dress I found at Torrid for clearance prices, which had a layer of brown mesh over a lighter brown lining for a sort of wood-grain effect. I hot glued leaves to it, and to a green wig, and that was pretty much it — totally simple and wearable. This year I found a great Godzilla head and was thinking about going as a Bridezilla, but I thought that’d be funnier to do next year, a month after my wedding. Also, it’s hella difficult to find cheap tacky white dresses in my size.

Lay it on me, Shapelers. Do you love Hallowe’en? Do you dread it? Do you buy that Martha Stewart magazine with the Hallowe’en ideas, and do any of them really work?

44 thoughts on “Friday Fluff: Let’s Talk Hallowe’en

  1. I love love love love love love love and LOVE Hallowe’en.

    I mean, i really like the crap out of it. Like whoa.

    I rarely do decorating for it – our house is considered to be on haunted territory, so we get no trick or treaters. Technically, our house IS haunted, even. It makes for some very amusing stories. When Ben and i first moved in, we had some very near fights about things that neither one of us turned out to be doing. Heh.

    I mostly like harvest food. Pumpkin cupcakes, really good corn, really good squash, all sorts of nom nom nom. Best thing evar? Take a medium sized pumpkin. Cut open the top. Scoop out seeds (to bake later for NOM NOM NOM), insert whole stick of butter. Put in oven, bake until gooshy. Scrape out with a spoon, put in dish. Eat.

    Ben also likes to make stew, where the final step is to put the stew into a pumpkin and bake it at low temp for a while so that the stew gets all pumpkin-y and the pumpkin gets all stew-y. SO GOOD.

    I rarely dress up for Hallowe’en, and when i do, it’s a pun. My favorite costume involved: a pair of bunny ears on my head, one of those green net thingies you use to scoop fish out of a fish tank (that i carried as if it were a wand), and a whole mess of network cables that i wrapped around my limbs in assorted ways. I was the etherbunny, and i carried my ethernet! ha! I am SUCH A DORK. :D

    This is totally my favorite time of year.

  2. I love Halloween, but this year (after graduating college) I’m far from my friends, so no parties. My apartment building also has locked doors so I don’t know if I’ll get any trick or treaters.
    Last year I went as one of the people who walk in the mall at 6 in the morning. I wore big white tennis shoes, I went to goodwill to get pink and turquoise track suit, powdered my hair and threw it in a bun and found a pink denim visor that said “GRITS girls raised in the south”. There was a small crew of us, so we were pretty easily recognizable I think.

  3. I love love love it. I refuse to believe that, at 29, I’m too old for costumes. (I’m also pagan, and so it has a religious significance to me as well, but I still get into the costumey aspect of the day too.)

    I always make sure I dress up, even if I’m doing nothing more out of the ordinary than going out to dinner in my getup. In recent years there’s pretty much always been a friend with a costume party or at least a group delegation to a nightclub.

    My favorite costume is probably my “autumn goddess” one, which was an excuse to wear a dark greenish-brown formal that I loved but had little practical use for; I bought one of those plastic Halloween wreaths from Walgreens and glue-gunned the little leaves and pumpkins and stuff to a headband so it looked kind of like a crown. I had a “bouquet” of wheat and leaves as well.

    A close second was the time I summoned up all the courage I’d ever had (I was fat already by then, too!) and wore a mostly see-through white negligee with stick-on jewels stuck to it, with a mask and a dark wig, in imitation of a scene from the book Kushiel’s Dart. The tattoo, I had the bf draw on with sharpies!

    I don’t know what I’ll be doing this year. I’ve been considering going mythological. Maybe Medusa, if I can figure out how to make a mask or wig for it. (Or get my own hair to look snakey.) I was also considering sort of a scary take on a lunar goddess. I seem to always think of costumes where I end up having to explain the context for five minutes. “Well, see, there’s this story where so-and-so does this and that, and the necklace represents blah blah blah, and…”

  4. Kelly,

    I’ve been Medusa before and it was one of my faves. The hair was actually super easy. I just bought a whole bunch of plastic snakes from the dollar store and rubber banded them to my hair. Your mileage may vary, of course, but I thought it looked great (if a little kitschy).

    I always do the Village parade for halloween. Last year me and a couple of my girlfriends were dead Disney princesses (I was Belle after being mauled by the Beast). It was a lot of fun. I made my dress (it wasn’t the most sturdy of costumes, but it looked a 100 x better than those plastic store bought things). I have no clue what I’ll be doing this year though. I much prefer doing a group thing, but I don’t know if me and my friends will be able to come up with a good group idea this year.

  5. I love halloween, but I’m not a very creative person, so I don’t usually have very interesting costumes. This year I think I’m going to go as a pixie, I have this dress (the one on the right) which I think would make a great pixie costume if I added some wings and a wand. This year I might be going on a Halloween pub crawl with my sister, and my Brownie group is having a Halloween party. (I love seeing them all in their costumes!) I’m just sad that I live in an apartment condo and so don’t get any trick or treaters. (Although friends and family who live in houses are saying they don’t get many anymore either… apparently the kids are trick or treating in malls now? Because of the safety thing?)

  6. Halloween rocks major. Love the Dia De Los Muertos art (& message, which actually relates to the non-fluff ideas about accepting your body & its limitations.) Love the food this time of year — corn & squash & pumplins & lima beans & stewed things and apples and baked things. Yum. Love leaves, even when I finally haul ‘em off my patio next March. Love the way the air smells. (This is also a good time to be in love…sigh. Maybe next year.)

    Costumes:
    What I’m wearing: my tea-bag get-up (to a tea, of course!) This came out pretty well (used strips of brown grocery bags as the “tea” instead of dried leaves). I was also able to duplicate the Red Rose tag in an 8″x10″ version, which helps sell it.

    What I wish I was wearing: a Minerva costume (CA state seal) complete with $70.00 grizzley bear puppet named “Cuffy” that I really should have bought last summer from that gift shop. (I have a whole stand-up routine to go with this. I really should write more of this stuff down…)

  7. I was in New Orleans for Halloween back in ’97 and the group costumes in particular were brilliant. A groom-to-be, his brothers, and their father were dressed as 70′s-style Elvises, another group of people were dressed as Oompa-Loompas. Then I was in L.A. for Halloween in ’99 and the parade of costumes on Santa Monica was mindblowing. The best one was a girl who had managed to craft a large shark out of foam or something and had it hanging off her so it looked like she was being devoured by it.

    Probably my best costume was a robot back when I was in fifth or sixth grade. It involved a fuckton of aluminum foil and cardboard boxes, but it looked excellent.

    I’m going to a party (the first time in a long time) outside Atlanta, GA this year and the theme is “Hollywood Glamorama”. I’m so excited *and* I get another use out of the prom dress I bought from Torrid (I went to a birthday party that was prom-themed back in August).

  8. My best costume year was when I made my partner be Kermit to my Miss Piggy. I wore a dress with a plunging neckline and high slit, made a piggy nose and ears, and completed the look with the necessary pearls, fake diamond ring, and the perfect long lavender gloves. My partner wore all green, goggles made to look like Kermit eyes, and, of course, the Kermit collar. No flippers, though.

    A couple of years later, I found a friend to be Beaker to my Bunsen Honeydew. I love the Muppet show.

  9. I’m jumping on the “love Halloween” bandwagon. When I was a kid, trick-or-treating wasn’t allowed in the village I lived in, so I didn’t get to do that until I was 28. We always decorated our house though – and we lived in a haunted farmhouse too!

    The best costume I ever saw (outside of the fabulous Neon Nuns from West Hollywood – men dressed in habits in neon colors) was in DC. From one side, this woman looked completely normal, if dressed a little conservatively. However, if you looked at her straight on, she had small blackbirds attached to her clothes and hair (her wig actually had the birds pulling her hair up). The effect was quite good! She looked like she was straight out of “The Birds.”

  10. I so dug Halloween (till my moms banned it because of religious reasons) but I had a great time dressing up.

    My favorite costume was when I dressed up as a magic queen. What’s a magic queen? I had the long poofy dress (courtesy of a wedding I was in), and my mom made me a crown and scepter. When I went to school, all of the kids pretended that when I waved my scepter and said a magic word, I could transform them into, say, dogs and babies and such. It was a great year. (I was about 7 or 8 at the time).

    Now? Well, since I just moved to Texas, I don’t have anyone to break the rules with me and go to a party with. Anyone have any suggestions?

  11. I live in central New York, where Halloween could be anything from 70 degrees to snow. When I was kid, mom would not get into the whole costume thing- so as a result, at 41, I am still big into it on my own. Mom’s Halloween costume would be something to the tune of “Wear your rain slicker and go as a fisherman.” Bleh.

    When I was the elegant femme about town (ie- before I got hitched), I was all about the big, fancy outfits. Once I was a peacock goddess (yes, I know peacocks are male) with this great headress and gown I made. I once persuaded all my friends to come with me as elegant vampires. We all wore cocktail dresses or tuxes and had awesomely done preternatural makeup and fangs.

    One year, my partner & I went as Sonny & Cher- I made my own Mackie inspired dress. We won $250 in prize money! We’ve also been all the big “couples” costumes- Lucy & Rickie, Kermit & Miss Piggy, Gomez & Morticia, Fred & Wilma Flintstone. One Halloween weekend, we had a church related dinner the same night as the big Halloween dance we like to go to every year. We came in the same clothes we wore to the church dinner and called our costume “Upstanding Lutheran Folks.” Last year, she went as “Mary Potter” and I was a glamour witch.

    This year, I am so stealing an idea I saw on the NYC Halloween Parade Broadcast. She will be a chef and I will be the Wedding Cake- with a same sex inspired cake topper like the one we had as my hat. The dress is split into tiers of fun foam with fabricated “frosting” flowers- I’ll be wearing something simple underneath.

    It is a must for you to find somewhere to celebrate Fashionable Nerd. Look out for big community events/parties and see if any new companions want to join you.

  12. fillyjonk, try charity shops for that cheap bridal gown and go as Bridezilla! Tell everyone you’re giving them a taste of what’s to come. (Next year, you can be Bride of Frankenstein, and then the Princess Bride…)

  13. I’m not a big Halloween person, since the costumes have always seemed way too flashy and showy for my introverted body-nervous self.

    But! Friends of mine are getting married on Halloween, and it’s a costume party. My husband and I are going as Sims – green diamonds above our heads (we’re still figuring out the technology!), and wearing regular clothes.

    Hey, it’s a step!

  14. I love Halloween. For the past couple of years, I’ve gone to work dressed in a goth look. 3 years ago, I went as a hockey player. Since I have an office job it can’t be something too bulky or warm (and that’s where the goth look comes in handy).

    However, this year I wanna do something different, but dunno what. It’ll probably be a last-minute visit to a local costume shop.

    My best friend and her bf dressed up as angel and devil (she the angel, he the devil) 2 years ago, and won at our fave pool hall for best costumed couple.

  15. fillyjonk, try charity shops for that cheap bridal gown and go as Bridezilla!

    People keep saying that, and it makes me wonder what their thrift stores are like! Bridal gowns at mine still cost over $100. I wasn’t even going looking for them — I went to two large thrift stores looking for ANY tacky white dress that would serve the purpose, and finding nothing. But I did find bridal gowns (in what size, I don’t know, as they were hanging up). And they were way, WAY out of my Hallowe’en price range.

  16. Michele, my friend Kevin always gets around dressing up for Hallowe’en by going as “Kevin in high school.” His style has not changed appreciably in over a decade, so he just wears his regular clothes.

    The great thing was when another friend put on a long blond wig, a NIN shirt, and a flannel, and also went as Kevin in high school. I have a great photo of the two of them together.

  17. Sweet Machine threatened for a while to have a costume wedding. I think she was going to make me be a mime. SM, do you remember this?

    Thankfully she decided she’s not the marryin’ type.

  18. Unfortunately, Halloween hasn’t been much of a holiday for me the past couple of years. The last time I dressed up I went as a witch (SO TYPICAL). My husband and I bought our first house a few years ago and were so excited for little trick-or-treaters, but through the years have found that kids don’t trick-or-treat in our neighborhood.

    The best Halloween costume for me was a bag of Jelly Beans. My mom and I spent weeks putting it together. It consisted of blown up balloons of all different colors, huge sheets of clear plastic and the old go-to of duct tape. I won the Halloween costume contest at school, but could NOT sit down at all.

    I read a comment thread at Pandagon and someone suggested dressing in all black and cutting out a white circle, drawing an 8 on it, attaching it to your chest and going as an 8 ball. They also had “fortunes” in their pockets to hand out to people during the evening. I thought it was a pretty clever idea and not at all expensive.

  19. I’m a new reader, and I LOVE halloween. I don’t often dress up anymore, but when I did, I had a variety of favorite costumes, most of which my mom made for me.

    My Green Cat costume. I have had a thing for green cats since I was two years old, and when I was three, my mom made me the costume. That costume has been worn by every cousin of mine and half the children in the neighborhood we lived in plus both my little brothers.

    I was a gypsy when I was six…heavy makeup, earrings, and this awesome orange and yellow swirly skirt. Just beautiful.

    I made a fried egg costume when I was in middle school out of a sheet, yellow felt and stuffing. I thought it was fantastic. Another sheet costume I had was being Charlie Brown’s Ghost in It’s the Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown.

    My mother makes AWESOME costumes. My little brothers were, in various years, The Lone Ranger, ET (Mom says she felt like shooting herself in the head after making that costume. And it was INCREDIBLE) a Triceratops, an Indian, Zorro and others that don’t come to mind right away.

    My now seven year old daughter has had two costumes made by Grandma…when she was four, she wanted to be Kiki from Kiki’s delivery service. And then when she was five, she wanted to be Princess Aurora. Both made expertly by Grandma. This year she’s going to be a snow leopard, again made by Grandma…we just found the perfect material yesterday. She’s loudly passionate about endangered animals and is considering handing out little papers with snow leopard facts on them when she trick or treats.

    I’m thinking, with Mom’s past in costumes, the Snow Leopard will be the best costume EVAR. :D

    Mom…(me) just needs to find whiskers and spirit gum!!!

  20. I’ve never really cared much about Halloween. My birthday is the 26th, so I think my focus was on mememe. That said, I’ve probably also never gotten much into it as an adult because I can’t go buy the Sexy Anna Rexia costume in my size (i love the irony of that, btw).

    One of my favorite costumes I’ve seen were a guy dressed as a bedside table (he was right in the middle with a lampshade on his head. What was especially clever was what he put on the table.

    Oh! and in high school one of the teachers came as a tornado, covered in the cobweb material/batting and with little stuff stuck all over – cows, cars, trailers, trees.

  21. I was a real Halloween bride. I wanted my nieces to dress in their costumes to be the flower girls, but my sister refused to go along. She didn’t think her then-6 year old dressed as Britney Spears would be “appropriate” in the wedding photos. As a non-parent, my reaction to that was “if her outfit is too inappropriate for pictures, why is it OK for her to go out in public in it?” but I bit my tongue to avoid the “what do you know, you don’t even have kids” lecture. Our wedding was really small, so we didn’t do the costume thing with the guests … but it would rock for an anniversary party!

    My favorite Halloween costume was a fallen angel … a white choir robe from the thrift shop left mostly unzipped showing plenty of a bustier, black fishnets, a bent halo, ridiculously high stilettos.

  22. Yay! Halloween. I’m behind schedule, but if I can find red hair extensions I’ll be all set.

    Last year I went as the “deep blue sea” (thanks to a mermaid cape from Karuna arts and a lot of left over sea shells from my former life in Florida.

    So this year I’ve decided to balance that and go as a fire elemental (the other pagans in the crowd will get it).

  23. I was a Freudian Slip.

    All together now: *groooooooaaaaan*

    What was especially clever was what he put on the table.

    Please tell me it was condoms.

  24. <i.Kelly- I love Kushiel’s dartAnd your costume sounds so cool!

    Thanks! :) :) I had a lot of fun with it, though it ended up being the most expensive costume I’ve ever done, mostly because my coloring looks awful in white and so I had no white lingerie, shoes, etc. at all and had to buy everything new. Even the lingerie saleswoman tried to talk me out of the white and into something brown-and-gold, which would indeed have looked much better on me if I hadn’t been shopping for a costume! But with the black wig, the white looked halfway decent.

    My cheapest costume ever–I had about five bucks to my name at the time–was when I just put on all black. I have long wavy blonde hair and I went around telling everyone I was Loreena McKennitt, who had a pretty big following among the people I was partying with that year.

  25. Rather distressingly, as someone with an abiding love of costume (to the extent that I’m in the process of retraining to change careers and make costumes professionally), I live in a country where they don’t really do Hallowe’en and have been to the sum total of TWO costumed Hallowe’en party in my whole goddamned life, both of which I held myself… one when I was 8, just so I could get to wear the spangly red devil costume that I’d fallen in love with during one of my many, many forays to the costume shop.

    At that same party, my mum labelled all the food with names like “witches’ fingers” and stuff, and all the stupid prissy 8-yr-olds wouldn’t eat it because of the “nasty” names. This pretty much sums up why I never want to be a mother. I would be SO disappointed if my own child turned their nose up at eating witches’ fingers.

    The other party was 7 years ago, not long after I got married, and held mostly so I could re-wear the very long, very red dress I had for part of my wedding… I also made food with nasty, but this time more obscene names (dogs’ penises casserole, anyone?*) but this time my friends loved it :-)

    *apologies for any offence…

  26. The best costume I ever saw was many moons ago in college. A young man draped in a gray dyed sheet with wispy cotton batting around it and a cheap kid’s telescope mounted on his shoulder. He was Mount Palomar. I thought it was brilliant, but then again, I’m a geek.

  27. I LOVE Halloween. Largely because its the only time of year I don’t get any crap for the way I’m dressed, or the decorations in my office.

    This year I was considering dressing up like Wonder Woman just so I could go-go dance in the cubicle of a co-worker who is “very concerned” about my health and the health of another fat co-worker.

    My two favorite costumes were both costumes I wore while bartending in a fetish club with HUGE Halloween parties.

    1. Christabel. The woman in the poem read by the Shelleys, Byron, Polidori and the others, who had eyes for nipples. I’m so pale the Woojie third eye kits matched my skin really well, so it took people second and third looks to figure it out, (yes I was topless) and it creeped them out. Those things are the perfect size for pasties for me.

    2. A Fallen Angel. From the front it just looked like I was wearing a white slip. From the back, it was ripped to my waist and I had mocked up bloody stumps where my wings would have been. That was another fun, second or third look costume.

    This year, I think I’m giving the disturbing a break. Wonder Woman does sound like fun.

  28. I’ve always wanted to make myself up so I appeared to be in black and white, and then put on a dark suit and tie and go as Rod Serling, but I lack the makeup skillz.

  29. I love Halloween! My most elaborate costume ever was when I made a full Edwardian outfit: corset, bustle, long skirt and jacket with big mutton chop sleeves. It was kind of ridiculous to go to that much work for one night, but then on that night it was worth it :)

    This year I’m going to a party with a “zombie vs. robot” theme. I’d like to dress up as a parody of those stupid T&A costumes and call myself a “naughty robot” but I’m having a hard time conceptualizing it. I may take the easy way out and dress as a ninja. Because everyone knows ninjas beat both zombies and robots.

  30. A couple of years ago, we were short on money. I wanted my girls to have decent costumes but not cost an arm and a leg so I put my youngest in a pink sweat suit (that she already had), I bought 3 pieces of pink felt and fashioned 2 ears and a nose. I attached the ears to a plastic head band and the nose to an old large rubber band. I then wrapped her in a blanket. She was a “Pig in a Blanket”
    My oldest was easier: Brown shirt and Pants, A “P” cut out of black felt and attached to the shirt, Black grease paint over one eye. A “Black Eyed Pea”.
    Every house they went to loved them!

  31. I’ve been into and not into Halloween at various points in my life. Recently I’ve been more likely to dress up for the Jewish holiday of Purim, which can get really fun too. My community has a celebration with lots of people (kids and adults alike) in costumes, and cross dressing is a particular tradition. This year my (now) husband and I dressed as a bride a groom, with the genders crossed, in anticipation of our wedding which was this past summer. It was so much fun!!

    We found him a cheesy 80′s-ish dress (pink, not white, but it worked) at a local place that sells random used clothing by the pound (the best for costumes!) and gave him a veil and a dollar store fake flowed bouquet. I borrowed an old-ish tux from my dad and made a cummerbund and bow-tie out of pink felt. I think the pink felt accessories were my favorite part, they came out really cool. (I’m not a sewer/crafty person at all, so when I actually manage to make something that works, it is very exciting.)

    Kelly L. — I also loved the Kushiel’s series, good for you for having the confidence to wear that costume! I don’t think I could ever do it.

    My own book-inspired, body-type-defying costume fantasy is to dress as Tarquine from the Skolian Saga (I have long dark hair, would need some white spray and red contacts, should be easy to find around Halloween, and some sexy clothing) with my husband as a provider. hehe. That would be great fun. I think we’d have to do it for a specifically scif-i related event, though, in order to be around enough people who’d get it for it to be worth it.

  32. I didn’t grow up with Halloween so when I lived in Nth America I went for it. One year I went as Jackie O’ Lantern – think Onassis/Chanel style pink suit with big black round sunnies, frame handbag and heels with a pumpkin mask. Simple.

    One year I saw a girl all dressed in bright red, even with face paint and sprayed red hair riding around on a child-size bike. Guesses?

  33. Jackie O’Lantern = hilarious. Simultaneously elegant, Hallowe’eny, and a pretty decent pun.

    No guesses on the red kid, though I’m sure there’s a big *facepalm* coming my way when you tell us.

  34. A long time ago, in the land where I still had roommates, drank like I lived in an oil town (which I did!), and regularly attended house parties, roomie and I hosted a Hallowe’en party, with a booze prize for the best costume.

    We decided on the moment that we had to give an alternate prize to the “most creative last minute costume” when it arrived – one of our friends wore black head-to-toe, and had safety-pinned white socks and fabric softener sheets all over her clothes.

    She was a Dryer Goblin.

  35. I don’t do Halloween anymore, but a couple of years ago, one of my leads came as a desk. She used a cardboard box painted like wood with drawers and all drawn on it, her head came out of the top on one side with a picture frame around it and a cardboard computer monitor next to that. She drew a keyboard in front of the monitor and taped pen and paper off to one side. It was really cute (and since we worked with computers all day long keying in rebates, very appropriate).

  36. Two favorite costumes when I was a kid, one born of sheer desperation on the part of my mother, I think.
    The one she went all out on was to make me Rapunzel, complete with tower. I had a huge cardboard box with the top and bottom gone held up with suspenders around me, painted to look like brickwork.
    In the desperate year, (I recall this happening about an hour before the party I was supposed to go to) she took a clear plastic trash bag, cut two leg holes in the bottom, had me put on my leotard and tights, then filled the trash bag with small balloons and stapled it shut over my shoulders with a big rectangle of posterboard labeled “Brachs”. I was a bag of jellybeans. It was weirdly fun to walk around in a bag full of balloons, although I couldn’t sit down.

  37. I think the jellybean one was popular — someone mentioned it upthread, and I remember one or two from childhood too. Most impractical costume I ever had was a birthday present — it was an awesome costume, but it was basically a wrapped box with holes, so impossible to sit in. My dad had the same trouble when he went as a “straw poll” — a barber pole with straw coming out of the top and sides. My mom was a “show of hands.” My parents are nerds.

    I remember someone in elementary school going as a shower. I don’t recall quite how it worked but it was very impractical and utterly awesome. Could be even cooler if you were an adult and allowed to go topless (as in, a guy or a woman in certain contexts!) — you could have the bath around your middle, a translucent curtain around that (maybe suspended from a ring that’s supported on your shoulders), and a showercap… and I’m not sure how you’d deal with the showerhead. Actually, just the tup, toplessness, cap, and a loofah would be pretty great.

  38. The costume I love best is not from Halloween but from those showings of The Sound of Music where people dress up.

    It was a tall skinny guy in a bright yellow body suit that included a very tight hood. He was Ray, a Drop of Golden Sun.

  39. One year I saw a girl all dressed in bright red, even with face paint and sprayed red hair riding around on a child-size bike. Guesses?

    Menstrual cycle. 1-2-3 Groooooaaaaaan.

  40. I used to hate Halloween because my dad loved it. His costumes have included Fidel Castro (he’s a dead ringer), a Christmas tree (ornaments in his beard, a spire tied to the top of his head, and a walkman with tiny speakers playing carols), the Ox King from Dragon Ball Z, and Britney Spears in her schoolgirl phase. That last one was especially humiliating because I was in high school at that point, and the “cool kids” were trick-or-treating… and there’s my dad, answering the door with a belly shirt and his beard in pink ponytail holders. Now I’m old enough to appreciate it and think his love of costuming is great, but as a kid I hated being upstaged.

    Personal favorite costumes: pregnant bride (for a Rocky Horror showing), Clara from the Nutcracker, and Kaylee from Firefly. Kaylee was actually fun because I was part of a group; my friend knit her own hat for her Jayne costume, and our friend Jeff was Inara. Good times.

  41. I was a princess last year, since I had a custom-made princess costume from the school musical! Add a shit-ton of red eyeshadow, a cheap tiara and some fangs: presto, evil princess.

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