Tuesday, October 17, 2006

The Horror

Here's what New York Times guest columnist Allison Glock found while looking for a mouse costume in the adult costume section of Target:

I walked past the displays for the sexy devil and the sexy bunny and the sexy leopard — which, confounding logic, was already sold out — before happening upon the wall of full adult costumes. The first was Tavern Lady, an off-the-shoulder dress and faux-leather vest. It was followed by French Maid (ruffled mini-dress with matching headpiece), Cheerleader (pleated micro-mini and fitted vest) and Wonder Woman, which had not only a nearly invisible skirt but also red vinyl boot covers that reached to the thigh.

Not that she's the first to notice that Halloween for women seems to be, instead of a slasher ghoul fest, a time to be tres sexy. Sexy ghost. Sexy cat. Sexy nurse. At a party of grad students one year, the dean of students for the journalism school at the time showed up in lingerie and said she was a Freudian slip.

I definitely plea guilty to the sexy costume charge. I mean, it's been a long time since I dressed up as a tacky tourist (7th grade) or a football player (don't ask).

Mainly, I donned red lipstick and a pout to be Marilyn Monroe, even though the holiday is so much more Marilyn Manson. I showed up in the Castro as Cat Woman, wearing a Betsy Johnson catsuit and ears and a tail, but was showed up by men wearing dresses. And maybe my best costume was at Hampshire College's Trip or Treat party, where I arrived as Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds (I had glued those cool glow in the dark stars all over a short black dress), which paired well with my friend's Devil in the Blue dress costume. She carried a red trident and wore a blue dress.

I was reminded of all this while on the bus this weekend shamelessly listening in on some twentysomething's conversation about what to wear this Halloween.

She's planning to go as scary skinny, by wearing one of those skeleton suits with a bikini over it.

Target, take note. And truly, the scariest costume I can imagine.

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