It’s not often that I’m proud of the things I do.
But this year for Halloween, I’m kind of proud about how things turned out.
First of all, let it be known that I LOVE Halloween. I’m the absolute worst planner when it comes to the holiday, but the idea of dressing up and going to Halloween parties and bringing witches back from the dead is so exciting to me.
Usually I put my costume together at the last minute, and this year was no exception. The ONE exception was when I dressed up as a member of KISS and my friend organized the whole thing, with reminder emails, internet links to buy wigs, and cardboard pieces to construct instruments out of.
We looked pretty amazing.
But most of the time I have a vague idea of what I’d like to do and then I shop for costumes on the of the party.
(“Lemme guess…you’re one of those people who buys Christmas gifts on December 24th, aren’t you?”)
My first year at Dartmouth I knew I wanted to be an 80s tennis player, and the day of the graduate student Halloween party, I went shopping with classmates to put together my costume. Despite our distractions with gold jackets and pimped out fur coats, we managed to find find a few things. We even got (we = my friend, from his workplace and without my help at all) wooden tennis racquets!
Then there was the year that I got out of work early and was determined to go out and DO SOMETHING BECAUSE IT’S HALLOWEEN!!! so I convinced my friends to find things in their closet and join me.
Then there’s this year.
I understand that it’s technically still two days before Halloween, but I already had my fun. I requested last weekend off from work so I could go to New Hampshire and celebrate at the graduate student party (as clearly all my wonderful costumes come to fruition at Dartmouth.)
Of course, I had no costume plan when I asked for time off, so I told my creative friend to think of something and tell me what we were doing.
She suggested Day of the Dead, which sounded interesting and unique, and I could paint my face again, so I was on board.
“What should I bring?” I asked.
“Do you have anything floral?” No.
“Do you have face paint?” No.
“Do you have a hair straightener?” YES!*
*there’s actually a story here of how and why I own a hair straightener. It happened at a mall kiosk where I was a targeted victim with my “I’m a sucker” stamp tattooed across my forehead. Left to my own devices I would own no useful hair or make-up products because, as I told the guy who sold me the hair straightener, “I don’t care about how I look.” But he managed to guilt me into buying one.
PS. Six years later and I’m finally getting my money’s worth**!
**I will need to straighten my hair at least 98 more times to make it worth it.
My lovely Persian friend and I went shopping–as per usual–on the day of the party. But thankfully her wardrobe is like a retail store, and she had enough clothes to outfit the both of us: WITH OPTIONS. Short skirt, long skirt, orange florals, black contrasting florals, handmade florals, pastel colors, etc.
We settled on a “not sexy” theme, aka long skirts, without fish nets, and no push-up undergarments.
The things we shopped for included fake flowers, make up and a few other odds and ends, and we scored great deals (79 cent flowers? Hollah!) At 6pm we began working: we made our own tops and headbands (we = Niusha), did each other’s hair, ate dinner, and did our own make-up. The party started at 8. We hoped to get there at 9:00. We arrived at 10:30.
BUT! We did so in style.
Many people came up to us and told us we had the best costume, and I felt almost like a celebrity: strangers were asking to take pictures with us–at the costume party, and also afterwards at the bar in town. (“Oh yeah. You blend.”)
Eventually our faces began to itch and the colors began to melt, and it was time to return home go back to being normal people again. But it was still heartbreaking to strip the paint away…the oily, smeary, pore-clogging paint.
Now it exists only as a memory, and my actual Halloween will be spent serving food while wearing something anti-climactic, like cat ears.
Been there, done that.
But I will make the most of it! And if nothing else, come Saturday night, I will be throwing something together after work so I can attend my friend’s party. Maybe I’ll go as a waitress juggling four jobs! I’ve already got the costume all set up.
Happy Halloween, y’all. If comments allow pictures, do share.
For Lauren: “Come little children, I’ll take thee away…into a land of enchantment…”