Over on my Examiner page, I have been previewing all of the Halloween episodes of your favorite television shows. It certainly seems like there are a lot more this year than ever before! Or maybe I just never really paid attention before because I'm just not that into the holiday. As a kid I loved it because it meant getting out of school early and going around to collect free candy. It also meant silly string, which to this day still holds a special spot in my heart...
But regardless, the last few years I alternated between not dressing up at all and dressing up half-heartedly because I was told I had to in order to attend a certain party. And half-hearted costumes in my house mean whatever I can pull out of my closet and fashion into something even a little clever. I can't sew, and I'm not all that good at arts and crafts, so it never turns out so well. Last year I went as "an urban Girls Scout", which basically entailed me wearing a leather bomber jacket with a homemade Girls Scout sash over it. I had the sash for the Troop Beverly Hills: The Experience screening I had attended earlier in the month. Hardly inspired. Meanwhile, my dog Madison went as Liz Lemon because he owns a Snuggie.
Needless to say, though, I've been thinking a lot about what makes a good costume, and sure, I think there is still a place for classics if they are done up in a special, unique way. But I think what really makes for fun moments (and nostalgic photos later) is when people use something timely in pop culture or history, like Ted Mosby's "Hanging Chad" costume in season one of How I Met Your Mother. And because this is My Life, Made Possible by Pop Culture, I of course want to look at pop culture and television costume ideas, rather than political ones.
But so many (including some of this week's television shows) are referencing Lady Gaga, Isaiah Mustafa as the Old Spice Guy, Snooki, Facebook, or those damn Twilight kids. Here are my options-- assuming I decide to dress up at all this year and depending on my mood. By the way, all of these can also double as cool things to carve into pumpkins if you are so artistically inclined...
- Dexter victim. If I could get off the couch and stop eating cupcakes by the dozen (don't ask...and please don't judge!), I would be brave enough for this. All you really need is a flesh-colored bodysuit (or pasties if you live in a place that's still warm at the end of October), about a box worth of Saran Wrap, and red food coloring/corn syrup to make a cut mark on your cheekbone. If you're really adventurous, you can strap a wooden board to your back to resemble the table...just don't expect to be able to sit down, go to the bathroom, drive from one party to another, or dance, let alone even really walk well!
- Greendale Community College student. Or professor. I'm not that picky. And neither is Greendale. For the brave, if you can find white Lycra Spandex, you can go as the school mascot: The Human Being. Just don't forget to cut eye and/or mouth/nose holes! For the rest of us, we can wear our regular jeans and a non-descript top and grab an old Jansport, which actually serves a double purpose: it's part of the "look" but also can hold a ton of candy. The NBC website even sells notebooks, lanyards, and shirts with the school's logo on them if you want to get "fancy" and "legitimate" about it.
- Rapunzel. Or, if you prefer, Slutty Rapunzel. I was lucky enough to attend an advance press screening of Disney's new original animated film, Tangled, and I can effectively say that if I was eight years old, I would be begging my mother for a long blonde braided wig to go trick-or-treating around our neighborhood as that film's heroine. Because she truly is a heroine for once. Instead of just being a princess dreaming of adventures but ultimately needing some dude to save her, in this film, she's the one who has the smarts and other ability to do the saving. This would be a pretty simple costume, too: a flowy purple dress that you can put your own personal touches on with bedazzled accents or changing hemlines. And of course, don't forget your yards and yards of fake blonde hair be it via a wig or simple knitting yarn! Bonus points if you carry around a frying pan and/or frog.
- Sue Sylvester. On the flip side of things, you can easily pick up an Adidas track suit and a short blonde wig and go as everyone's favorite snarky "teacher".
- A Ghost Hunter. Now this costume can actually be of many different varieties. They sell "sexy Ghostbuster" costumes for like sixty dollars that consists of khaki short shorts and a matching button-down with the movie ghosthunters' old insignia patch ironed on. You can also wear a jumpsuit and carry around a Haliburton case filled with flashlights, EMF readers, digital cameras, and a sweatshirt for when you encounter a spirit that makes the room cold. OR you can do what I would do and take a page out of the Supernatural web series' book and dress in regular clothes (jeans and a tee shirt are fine) and carry around a (noticeably) homemade EMF reader and a digital camera. I can claim the camera part of my costume but really I'll also be filming the events of the party to hold over my drunk friends' heads later.
- A Real Housewife of Insert-Your-City-Here. Take your favorite little black dress and shrink it two sizes. Head to a jewelry stores-- anything from Claire's to Zales to Tiffany's, depending on your price range and level of commitment-- and buy the largest necklaces, rings, bangles, and earrings you can find. Apply too much eyeliner; use White-Out on your teeth, and straighten and then tease your hair (or just buy one of Kim Zolciak's wigs). Don't forget the ridiculously high heels! Tucking a tiny dog under your arm is a bonus. (*May be more fun if you are a man dressing as a woman for Halloween)
What are YOU dressing up as this year??