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The costume curse

What are you doing for Thanksgiving?

I don’t know. I can’t think about that now.

I have to concentrate on my Halloween costume.



Christmas? New Years? Your fast-approaching 30th birthday?

Sorry. I have to focus. Halloween is coming, and I don’t know what I am going to be.



The “what are you going to be for Halloween” panic started sometime around mid-September for my companions and me.

Usually, I am a procrastinator in all things, and costumes come best with a spontaneous grab at the thrift store racks one weekend before the big party.

But I feel jinxed.

Last year my creativity was as dry and useless as a piece of dehydrated banana flake found under the seat of a car. My muse was in detox. My spark of life was a flint with no stone.

It was Halloween night, and I was without a costume and without an idea.

My companions for that evening (who will be my companions tonight and who I will heretofore refer to as “Sidekick No. 1” and “Sidekick No. 2”) were in varied states of costume emersion. Sidekick No. 1 was dressed as Martha Stewart in prison garb — a popular choice last year. She was relaxed and applying another layer of lipstick as Sidekick No. 2 and I lamented our fates.

Of course, I can always look at someone else and decide what he or she should be doing with their life. I am the fortune teller whose own life is in cloudy shambles.

Within five minutes, Sidekick No. 2 had a homemade costume, the nature of which cannot be revealed in this family newspaper.

As for me, the hour came and my fairy godmother did not.

But not going out on Halloween is like not asking for a window seat, so I draped myself with aluminum foil, found a wig and a boa in my closet and put an old tobacco pipe in my mouth.

I have no idea what I was supposed to be, just another kooky fun lover who couldn’t think of a costume.

Alas, this year may be no better.

I imagine today is a madhouse in Steamboat. The clerks at Rummagers, LIFT-UP and the Local Exchange thrift stores are bracing themselves against the wind of panting, desperate costume shoppers pawing through the cheap jewelry bin.

The scrambling for a party atmosphere comes at the perfect time for me.

After a week without daylight-saving time, I have been dragging myself around with one eye open. It gets dark at 5 p.m., and I feel half dead as soon as the sun sets.

Tonight will be a great chance to wake up and act crazy, to splash some water on my face and slap on a wig.

And tomorrow, the bedroom floors of a thousand houses will be covered with shed skins — feathered boas and clown wigs, fake eyelashes and $5 wedding dresses.


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