I apparently have a very tragic tradition involving Hallowe’en, that most sacred of pagan nights wherein disguised phantoms roam the night in search of candycandycandysugarcandy.

My tragic tradition was once more unwittingly furthered this Hallowe’en season. I appear to be cursed.

My curse?

Incomprehensible costumes.

Take, for example, the earliest Hallowe’en that I can remember choosing my own costume. (The year before I had been a ghost at my mother’s behest; it’s easy to hide a snowsuit under a sheet in Canadian Octobers.) My first costume, sewn by my mother and picked out by me, all on my own, was a little known 1993 Barbie known as “Secret Heart Barbie.” So the silver lamé and pink broadcloth went fairly far in the way of Barbie fashion. What really put it over the edge in terms of confusing people was the long blonde wig on a four year old half Asian girl. That was the first Hallowe’en I had to explain myself – over and over again – and why exactly it was that I chose to dress as whatever the hell it is I was.

Several more confounding costumes have ensued, all of which seemed perfectly understandable and even a little clever in the planning. Either I have a very strange mind or I suck at costume execution. Or both.

I have been a garden, a wood nymph, a one-person-piggyback (which to be fair was difficult to see in the dark, and since my little sister was a washing machine that year, I changed halfway through the trick-or-treating to become a Pile of Laundry), a Scottish granny in her pajamas (don’t even ask, I don’t know), an extremely-clothed can-can girl, a courtesan (in grade 10 before I accurately knew what a courtesan was but by the time the 12th graders knew exactly what), a CSI, Juno (I totally nailed that costume too, I don’t understand how nobody got that… I HAD A NAMETAG THAT SAID HI, I’M JUNO), and most recently, this year, a Vivaciously Vixen-like Version of V from V for Vendetta. I love that movie, we’re nearing Guy Fawkes’ day, and the mask was only $8. Plus, if I’d dressed as Evey, I would’ve had an even harder time explaining what it is I was supposed to be.

Vemale Version of V

What, Moi blow up British Parliament?

So that ^ was my costume for this year’s Early Hallowe’en Party last Tuesday with my friends. We’re a bunch of geeks. November 5th is my roommates’ anniversary. So I figured, the mask is EVERYWHERE, the movie wasn’t too long ago and it’s shown every year on Teletoon, everyone will know exactly what I am the female version of! This has got to be the year that I don’t have to explain myself! (Granted, that year I was a Blues Brother was pretty good, but when my brother wasn’t around it didn’t really make much sense. Then I was just a chick in a tie and fedora.)

I digress. I showed up to the party lookin’ like I was gonna blow the place up with gunpowder in the basement. (Which I wasn’t, mostly because I’m not sure how to go about doing that and also because I don’t really wanna blow anything up.) I got my rose, my gloves, my trenchcoat which is not pictured (I know, it’s supposed to be a cape – do you think that’s where I went wrong?) and MY GIANT GUY FAWKES MASK. And I got a lot of “I know I’ve seen that, but what are you?” all night. I even got a sheepish, confused “Tuxedo Mask?”


Tuxedo Mask? TUXEDO MASK??? Does that look like a tuxedo or Tuxedo Mask’s mask to you??

Apparently it’s true. Hallowe’en for girls should not be clever or out-of-the-ordinary. It just leads to confusion. Hallowe’en for girls should be slutty sluttiness with sluts on top.

So next year for me should be pretty self-explanatory. I’m going as Hester Prynne.

Welcome, Christmas, bring good cheer

It’s that time of year again. The time when the church choirs dust off the carolling books, the department stores haul out the holly, and as soon as that pesky Hallowe’en’s out of the way (which we’ve been preparing for since August), the countdown for Shopping Days Left Till Christmas begins. (Only 65!)

Today I started rehearsals with the Kingsway United Church for their annual Christmas Pageant (which I’m pretty sure takes place on December 8th or something). This is my second year as choir director and already I’m known for my embarrassing choral warmups, eccentric conducting, and tendency to lose my voice by the end of rehearsal. (Thankfully, I’m only in charge for three weeks, and then the music director steps in to lose her voice instead.)

What a joyous season. Kids plan their costumes and get hyped on stolen candy from their parents’ shell-out stash while we celebrate the birth of Baby Jesus and try to be enthusiastic about shepherds for the next two months. Ring a bell, ring it merry up and down.

(As a side note, I’ve decided on my costume for this year. You know how most girls just add “slutty” to whatever they’re wearing? Slutty rabbit, slutty girl guide, slutty SS Youth, etc.? I’m just going to be a slut. That’s right – I’m going as Hester Prynne. The sluttiest Puritan of them all.)

(It’s kind of weird that I’m allowed to be a role model for children.)

Well, I’m off to the land of nod. Need to recuperate from all that exuberant conducting. It is a workout. Merry Hallow’s Eve to all, and to all a good night.