Halloween Through the Years
Without children of my own to parade about with this evening, I decided to take my dogs for a walk. I figured that they needed it anyway, and it would give me a chance to see this year’s ridiculous trendy costumes without having to man the door for a couple of hours.
The dogs enjoyed their walk, and I caught some glimpses of angry birds mixed in with more traditional fairies, bunnies, and pirates. If nothing else, I could use my task of “dog walker” as a costume; my dogs would overwhelm strangers with their cuteness long enough to distract them from the fact that I didn’t actually have a costume.
One little rabbit in particular reminded me of how little my family cared about Halloween when I was a kid. My mom considered it a waste of money to buy a costume I’d only wear one night a year, so we often had homemade costumes that strangely had a lot to do with our every day lives. Case in point? I was a soccer player, a ballerina, and a genie. Okay, so maybe I got one year costume year with the genie bit, but the others were identities that I tried on anyway.
My favorite memory from Halloween in high school were the years where we built mazes for a week and them crawled through them with smoke machines and black lights leading the way. Sadly, the fire marshals found something wrong with our use of cardboard boxes as a structural base, so the second year we had to use plywood with a tarp stapled over it. Way to take the fun out of it, guys. We tried to redeem the night by creating our own costumes and calling ourselves various barbies. I got stuck with Princess Barbie in a bubblegum pink ballgown and a wand. Yet another aspect of that night I’d love to forget.
College revealed to me how much I’d absorbed my mom’s belief that costumes weren’t worth paying for. One year I decided to embody “evil” and murder my friend who went as a “Cereal Killer”; another year I dressed as the “Spirit of Christmas” with an outfit worthy of an ugly Christmas Sweater party mere weeks later. Call me cheap. Call me creative. Call me lazy. I am what I am, and I’m thankful that I don’t have to worry about a costume this year.
No drunken parties or harvest parties, no slutty/sexy/completely inappropriate anything. Instead, I’m a dog walker, a reader, and an underemployed 20-something. The most radical thing I’m doing tonight is going to the gym and then going to bed tonight without the faintest idea why this holiday is such a big deal to so many people.