Back at college, I remember walking up to my friend Mike’s house on Halloween and seeing him frantically painting bright, red briefs onto a pair of nice blue jeans. He was really going at it, too — slapping the wet brush all over the crotch and pockets, wagging his tongue out like a dog.
Of course, an hour later he showed up to the party as Superman. And though he didn’t leap any tall buildings in a single bound he did manage to drink most of the punch bowl faster than a speeding bullet.
More importantly, his last minute Halloween costume got us all laughing. Some of the best ones do that:
• Professional baseball player. This is where you dig through your closet and peel out that old sweat-smelling jersey and orange foam hat from little league. Throw on your baseball glove and paint some thick black lines under your eyes and you’re good to go.
• Sandwich. My friend Brian once slapped a piece of bread on his chest and another on his back and went as a sandwich. You’ve heard of a quarter pounder, right? Well this was a two-hundred pounder.
• Vending Machine. Here’s where you duct tape little bags of chips and chocolate bars all over your body. If your party’s working properly, they’ll be ripped off you within ten minutes of getting there.
• The random closet mish-mash with a funny name. You’ve got a purple tie, dark shades, and leather pants so you go as a Club-Going Comedian With A Black Eye. You’ve got a bridesmaid dress, oven mitts, and a tiara, so you go as Lounge Singer Baking Cookies For A Bachelorette Party. You get the idea.
• Jabba The Hutt. Time to laze around on the couch in a green sleeping bag.
• A Road. Simply rip off a long strip of masking tape and stick it up your stomach and down your back. For bonus points, add a couple dinky cars to your shirt. Watch out for speed bump jokes.
• A Terrible Record Collection. My friend Alec once bought a milk crate of old records for a quarter from a garage sale. They were in horrible condition, but the price was right so he took them home. For Halloween he safety-pinned most of them on himself and went as A Terrible Record Collection. It was a good laugh, but since he couldn’t really move he ending up spending most of the party whisper-singing Monster Mash to himself on a futon.
• Grapes. Boy, if you’ve got some purple or green balloons laying around, have we got a costume for you.
• Yourself. This is where you arrive at the party completely unprepared, but rather than fess up you just tell people you’re going as yourself this year. Then whenever someone says “But that’s not a costume,” you say “Maybe it is…” and give them a really exaggerated wink.
• Stuff From My trunk. Okay, back to Superman Mike. Last year he wore an enormous tarp around his neck like a cape and wrapped himself in twine and booster cables. People, keep in mind this is the same guy who once strung a bunch of pots and pans over his shoulders and went as Pots and Pans.
Okay listen, when somebody puts an amazing amount of time and effort into a kick-ass costume, that’s worth celebrating. Nobody here denies that. All we’re saying today is if you manage to scramble around your house at the last minute and get us all laughing with your hilariously creative costume then that’s complete admirable.
It’s simply commendable.
It’s downright respectable.
And we all know it’s just totally