Everyone has that friend or co-worker, the one who, every year, you can’t wait to see what he or she has cooked up for a Halloween costume. These are people who respect the holiday, who live to thrill and ignite the imaginations of those who surround them. These people are the real treat in Trick-or-Treat.
Then there are those who just slouch their way through the holiday, as if it were a duty, not a privilege to dress up once a year. These folks throw on costumes so half-hearted and run-of-the-mill they may just as well have taken an undershirt and drawn a pumpkin on it with a Sharpee.
These ho-hum costumes fall into the following categories: lazy, excuse to show skin, and afterthought.
Sorry, folks. Wearing your pajamas to work does not make you a baby nor does it make you someone who is wearing a costume. It makes you lazy and unimaginative. I’ll grudgingly extend bonus points if you found a novelty sized pacifier somewhere, but those bonus points come with an ‘ewwww’ and a ‘seriously, please don’t share with me where one might purchase an adult-sized pacifier.’
Having had my house broken into while I was home, I will admit, this one is theoretically kind of scary. Scarier, though, than the costume is imagining where the guy in the accounting department dressed as a robber found the pantyhose he pulled over his head.
This costume gets zero points for inventiveness, but high points for practicality. Anyone who dresses as a hobo for Halloween probably had the same sort of mom as I had, if not the very same mom. Hobo is a very wise Halloween costume. It keeps you warm, as hobos dress in layers. It is also mindful of your pocketbook. All you need for a hobo costume is some old jeans, old shoes, and a rag bag full of old shirts. The challenge is to try to wear every single one of them. Note: do not add a red clown nose. This renders you a sad clown as opposed to a hobo. Similarly, avoid hats with wilted flowers.
Excuse To Show Skin
Though some might attempt to dress this one up as worthy of Halloween by adding ‘naughty’ or even ‘evil,’ there is no doubt that if someone is dressing up as a nurse for Halloween she’ll be wearing a non-regulation and extremely abbreviated skirt and will probably also be missing a few buttons from the top of her white blouse. Look out, red lipstick and fishnets are often involved.
• French Maid
Need I say more? This little number is scary merely due to the fact that it’s trumped only by the naughty schoolgirl in its overt attempt at sexiness. Look, Halloween is not a time to be sexy, people. Come on, where are all the zombies at?
• Sexy Kitty
Ladies, please! This is the worst offender. Many abuse this ‘costume’ to the extent that they’ll use Halloween as an excuse to get a run out of that little black dress they never find occasion to wear. Swipe a few whiskers across their cheeks in black eyeliner and these gals think they’re good to go. Kudos to the rare few who attempt to make a tail out of a straightened-out clothes hanger covered in black pantyhose, or ears out of a headband with black cardboard triangles glued to it, but those die-hards are few and far between. For most Halloween Sexy Kitties, October 31st is an opportunity to show off some leg and get their money’s worth on that dress they thought they’d use every Friday night instead of the SpongeBob Squarepants jammie bottoms they wear while catching up with their Tivo and making short work of those pesky bags of microwave popcorn hanging around in the cupboard. Which, incidentally, sounds like a great way to spend a Friday night to me.
• ANYTHING Bought at a Store on the Way to Work
If you are a grown man dressed as Ironman and your costume has anything to do with a thin elastic strap and a plastic mask, you are wearing an afterthought. If you are a professional woman who thought wearing glow-in-the-dark skeleton earrings you spied last-minute in the impulse buy section near the counter at Walgreens would do the trick, you have donned a pair of afterthoughts. These people scream “I don’t want to miss out on anything, but I don’t really want to go to any trouble.” Jeez, this probably should have been in the lazy category. For shame.
• Wearing Your Clothes Backwards
For those of you shaking your head in disbelief, I’m not making this up. I’ve witnessed it. There exists a mercifully rare breed of people in this world of ours who think putting their clothes on backwards constitutes a Halloween costume. Newsflash: WRONG.
• The “Hello, My Name Is” Tag
Now, the people who wear the Hello, My Name is Tags with the, look out, WRONG name, get some benefit of the doubt. These attempts can really be more accurately classified as tongue-in-cheek than afterthought. Theirs is a costume that is subtle and somewhat ironic in its humor. Gross. Really. Isn’t subtlety the absolute last thing you want to come in contact with on Halloween? Halloween is about flying your freak flag. So the clever name-tag people get a big zero in my book.
If you go back to the roots of Halloween, it’s all about paying respect to the dead (you know, the dead who rise from their graves and dance around one night a year) so, I implore you, use a little forethought and afford some respect to those who have come before you. And be sure not to run out of candy on Halloween night. Angry neighborhood Kindergarteners take the prize for scariest Halloween character.
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