I have been in my share of Halloween parades. As a child. Dressed as a clown for at least three years running. That third year my costume was so far up my butt, I suffered permanent damage. This year was my first time parading as a parent. And boy, was I excited. Seriously excited. I haven’t dressed up for Halloween in years. There was a time when I was THE hostess of Halloween parties. One of my first dates with my husband was to a Halloween party. We were Vampires. We had blood capsules in our mouths, which made us look like college students with fake teeth and red stuff coming from their mouths. Mind you, this was WAY before the Twilight nonsense had spread around the globe like cougar flu.
I wasn’t so insanely excited that I fashioned my own costume from a pattern or anything. I bought some discount wings at Walgreens, along with some awesome pink and black fake eyelashes. I ran to a department store and grabbed (even paid for) a long sleeve black shirt, some striped black knee socks, and some fuzzy pink slippers. I tried on some leggings, but vomited in my mouth at my reflection. Why are those fitting rooms so damn bright?! When are they going to learn to use soap opera lighting? I mean, really. It’s not like I’m ever going to see MYSELF in these clothes… and other people know I have a rule that they are only allowed to look at me if they engage their own personal soap opera vision. It’s similar to beer goggles. Everyone looks good in soap opera lighting. Susan Lucci is actually 110 years old. See?
After brushing my teeth really, really, really well, I continued my Halloween costume adventure. I found some crafty pipe cleaners and glued some cotton balls to the ends. I put them in my hair. Once I had donned my whole combination of random items, I suddenly metamorphosed into a beautiful butterfly.
Or a drag queen at a gay pride parade.
My daughter was thrilled that not only was I helping with the Halloween party at school, and coming to see the parade, but I WAS DRESSED UP! I assumed most of the parents who were helping out would be dressed up. I mean, why not?
So I helped her get dressed in her adorable little tiny witch costume. Truth be told, she looked like a teen goth, ready for prom. She wore it well. Black lipstick and all. Marilyn Manson would have been proud. As we arrived at the school, a dad asked me if I was the Sesame Street Fairy. I thought, “Well… I do look like a fairy – but not the kind you’d see at a grade school parade.”
Instead I said, “No, I’m a butterfly! (duh)” I tend to write better than I speak.
The kids were crazed like mini-meth addicts about to make a score. They were dancing and growling and jumping and snarling. It was awesome. The other volunteer parents began to show up, and there was a common thread amongst them. No costumes.
Work clothes? yep.
Exercise clothes? check.
Costumes? only one other. A mom. She was wearing SUPER tight leggings (perhaps the same ones that had induced vomit in me?), thigh high black leather boots, an extremely well-fitted leopard print top, a tail, and a leopard masquerade mask. So here we are, the mom who could double as a drag queen, sporting pink fuzzy slippers with some dead leaves stuck in them, and cat woman. Cat woman, from Columbia. Have you heard Gloria speak on Modern Family? That is her voice. It’s beautiful and alluring… BUT I don’t think any real human has the body of Gloria. I must say though, she looked better in her cat suit than I would have, and she didn’t seem to be fighting a gag reflex at all.
My daughter’s little bitty hand grabbed mine as the parade began. After we had paraded through a few class rooms, I began to notice that the other parents were WATCHING the parade, instead of participating in it. I kept going, a little tiny witch hand grasped in mine. My wings indiscriminately tearing down Halloween decorations in each room. As we neared the end, one of the moms said to me, “I think this is the first time that parents have been in the Halloween parade.” Hhhmmmmm….
Well, who is this holiday for anyway? I don’t attend crazy, intoxicated college Halloween parties anymore. Since my daughter was born the number of beers that I consume on Hallow’s eve has rapidly diminished. This year, I had one. What a sad and pathetic effort. What can I say? If I’m not acting like a drunken adult who is trying to find the joy in this child focused holiday through booze or by hooking up with Batman, then I might as well pretend I am a child. Besides, Halloween is the best! You get to dress up and show off and people pay you for this display with candy. Don’t worry, I didn’t hog the limelight from my daughter during the trick-or-treating. I held back. Of course, that didn’t stop me from stealing a Reese’s Peanut Butter cup or two once she had passed out in her candy coma.
In my bubble there are false eyelashes, made of sparkles and feathers, appropriate for daily wear. People wear fuzzy pink slippers instead of thigh high boots. In my shiny pink bubble of happiness, Halloween is not about being sexy. Unless a gay pride parade is passing through.