Friday, October 24, 2008

Yep, Cary Grant, you guessed it.

Halloween makes me nervous for two reasons:

1. If a zombie-virus ever breaks out during Halloween, we're doomed. Our culture's zombie-preparedness is critically low all year long, but at least people are capable of recognizing a shambling, animated corpse when it walks down the street. But during Halloween, there's no telling how long the infected would move through our streets, slowed only by dozens of "best costume" awards.

2. People expect me to dress up, and I don't want to.

And you can't just NOT wear a costume, not if you want to be out in the world with other human beings*. Go out in regular clothes and you'll be forced into this conversation over and over again:

"So . . . what are you dressed up as?" (said ever so condescendingly)

"*sigh* I'm-not-dressed-up."

"Psshhht . . . LAME!"

Yes! People will use the word "lame" in conversation! To make fun of another person's choices! This is a thing that happens!

It's as though the costumes drag people toward childhood without letting them quite reach it, and they wind up in high school again. (Ironically, a period when they probably didn't dress up for Halloween.) Suspended for the night in those teenage years, normal adults are compelled to interrogate their social world again.

Fortunately I've found the solution to the whole problem, and I'm glad to share it with the world: Just wear a hat. Get an unusual hat, a fedora will do, and wear it with some normal clothes. And just like that, no one will bother you. Even though they can't immediately tell what you're dressed as, the mere presence of this single unusual item will throw you off their "dork" radar.

The only conversation you'll have to deal with is:

"As you dressed as *person's guess here*?"

"Yes, yes I am."

*At least you'd better HOPE those are human beings, and not dangerous zombies!

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