I love Halloween. For me, it’s all about the costumes and the idea that—for one day a year—anyone can be anyone (or anything). Back before avatars in online role-playing games, getting dressed up for a party or taking up acting were the big options for the temporary reinvention of the self. No, I take that back. Of course there was always another option and that’s becoming a writer and creating characters as well as an entire world. But that’s a whole lot of work for one night, and so costumes are the best bet for becoming someone else for a change of pace.
Last year I was Medusa with a few snakes in my already snaky hair. It was a little too conceptual for most of the folks I met at a Tango Halloween party, but I was happy with it.
Over the years I’ve developed a few rules for my own costumes:
One: the costume must be comfortable and, if possible, danceable as I’m likely to be attend a party with dancing. This rule was learned the hard way as my black widow spider costume with extra limbs suspended from my back made a dance embrace a challenge and my futuristic robot made moving at all a challenge.
Two: the costume must be homemade, and require minimal or no sewing. I’m not shopping at the party store for more than accessories. If I can’t find it in the closet (I have a big closet with feather boas, furry ears, etc.) or buy the key bits and stitch the rest together, than I have to come up with another idea.
Three: the costume cannot be a character from contemporary popular culture or real life. I will not put an orange squirrel on my head and pretend to be Donald Trump, nor will I become Elphaba in Wicked or Daenerys Targaryen from Game of Thrones (even if the last one’s dragons are a temptation).
So who, or what, will I be on October 31?
Still working on it.