I stopped trick-or-treating when I was 17, but only because the people handing out the candy started looking at me funny and asking, "Aren't you a little old to be trick-or-treating?" But I still love Halloween. The hard part is finding other grown-ups who get equally excited about playing a part for one special night a year.
I'm definitely not one of those girls who uses Halloween as an excuse to dress like a tramp. You know, the the sexy angel, sexy referee, sexy devil, sexy security guard. In fact, that kind of pisses me off. Instead, I like to pick a costume that has some sort of story. Something I can sink my teeth into for a night and pretend like I'm someone else. This year, I found my willing partner -- my good buddy Mendoza Line.
A group of us originally had plans to head downtown to see David Sedaris perform. But the show was cancelled due to last week's fires (uh, if any group of people needed a laugh right now, it's San Diegans, Lame!). So our plans for Halloween went to crap and nobody seemed to want to do anything anymore. This is the first Halloween I've known ML, since we only became fast friends last December. So I was pleasantly surprised to note her insistent excitement to still get dressed up and do something.
I was up for it, though still uninspired as far as a costume. Then ML suggested we hit the thrift stores and find cheap bridal gowns and go as Bridezillas. She found a perfect $10 number, stains and all (I can picture the mid 1990s bride, sweaty underarms, spilling wine and a little cake down her skirt towards the end of the reception). I, however, was not so lucky and needed to rethink the costume. It was then I remembered the many crumpled, still un-drycleaned bridesmaid gowns on the floor of my spare closet. All those promises from my bridal friends, "Oh, you will definitely wear this bridesmaid's dress again!" came flooding back. All lies until now.
So last night was when Dating Trooper and Mendoza Line were transformed from unmarried mid-30 somethings into Bridezilla and her depressed, jealous bridesmaid. ML looked stunning in her gown and makeshift veil. But what topped off her costume was her attitude. An all too realistic one from my seven, yes seven, bridesmaid experiences.
Now, to all my Veteran friends for whom I have walked down the aisle, don't take offense. You were all wonderful, perfect, lovely, totally kind and considerate brides. But every woman is just a teeny, tiny bit of a Bridezilla on her wedding day. And by your mid-30s when you happily attended the many weddings of all of your friends, well, let's just say that "conflicting feelings" tend to build up. And that's what ML and I got to vent last night. It was freakin' awesome.
Despite ML's gown and veil, her costume was made priceless by her foot stamping, bossing around, and whining of "IT'S MY SPECIAL DAY!" Mine was accented by my running eye makeup suggesting a night of jealous tears, smeared lipstick from too many martinis at the bar, and two small signs - one pinned to my hip that said in bloody letters, "Always the bridesmaid..." and the second fastened to the ribbon on my wilting bouquet, "Never the Bride." Our duet was topped off by my repeated attempts to stab her with my plastic, bloody knife every time she turned her back. We made a lovely pair.
I will say about 1/2 the people "got" the costume, almost all of them women. (Of course, when ML went to the bathroom, I just looked plain stupid). I could tell which ones were on our side by their facial expressions - an enthusiastic nod that said to me, "hell, yeah sister. I've been there!" Everyone else probably thought we just wanted to act out our bridal fantasies and would shout at ML as we marched by "Don't do it!"
We went downtown where the streets are choked with people in an unofficial costume parade. This is the only night of the year when I willingly visit the Gaslamp district (normally a scene of tourists, half-naked bimbos, and Navy guys all trying to score). But what other time of year can you stand on a bar patio and heckle complete strangers as they pass and not get your ass kicked?! Total heaven.
There were some priceless costumes that far outshined ours, of course. My favorites were probably the upside down guy, the group of guys in male Hooters costumes (with very tight orange shorts that just about caused a riot of howls from women and homophobic shouts from the men), and the firemen - OK the firemen were actually real and I practically had to be restrained when they drove slowly down the street in their rig waving at our hoots and hollers. (Did you know about my firefighter obsession? Let's just say that I call "Rescue Me" my "fireman porn" and refuse to allow Wine Guy to watch it with me).
If you're wondering, "Where was Wine guy for all of this?" - he was at home watching television. As our Halloween plans started to ramp up, I could tell he was feigning any sort of enthusiasm. There is nothing worse than forcing someone to dress up and go out for Halloween who isn't into it. I wanted willing partners only and a lot of laughs. So I gladly left him at home and he gladly stayed there.
We did bump in to Kansas Cad as he wandered around alone, waiting for a call to meet up with his "player" friends so he could make his moves on whatever sexy cop or sexy bunny caught his eye. He was ready for action with his "Dick in a Box" costume and was eagerly awaiting any opportunity to show his oversized member nestled in the box contraption. When he first saw us, I think he was relieved to have some company. But he quickly became disillusioned with ML and me when he realized we weren't "scoping" but actually participating in the fun. When his call came for action, he was outta there.
We had a few beers, shouted our approval, disdain, and other spontaneous color commentary at the passersby (much to the entertainment of the older couple camped out next to us). ML even struck up a conversation with a stereotypically sexy-hot Italian guy in town for a few weeks for a "robot convention" (his English was weak, so who knows what that means). She got his phone number and we're supposed to all go out for dinner one night before he leaves. Score for ML! The best part was when she picked up my plastic, oversized bloody knife and with a stabbing motion asked the Italian, "Does this translate??" Classic ML maneuver.
All in all, a successful evening. By the end of the night I had a headache from laughing so hard. I think I even came up with my costume for next year. In keeping with my "phases of life" theme, I am thinking of dressing as a Maternal Clock. Whadya think?