I actually love Halloween and dressing up in costumes and stuff. I do. Hell, I’m a huge fan of horror movies and I like getting scared. I love Halloween. Get your freak on and all that jazz.
But I’ve stopped going to costume parties because people don’t come in costume anymore. They can’t be bothered and it really pisses me off. For the past few years now, in Manila anyway, there’d be this big party and half of the crowd are in costume and the other half aren’t. And that bothers me. I get really annoyed. Some people didn’t even put too much effort but at least they came in costume, you know? There are people who didn’t even try and that just annoys me to no end.
As the years went by, I noticed that the crowd in costume, from half the party decreased to one-third. I had it. I was just so disillusioned, not by the holiday itself, but by the people. If you don’t want to put on a costume, don’t fucking go, right? So I started heading out to house parties because they can be a little more strict with the rules. No costume, no entry. But there’s always one or two people not in costume and it drives me insane. A house party with, like, eleven people, and one is not in costume.
And they still want to be in the picture. It boils my blood.
You don’t have to have an inner freak that you want to come out and play; you could just enjoy being silly for a night. One night. Be silly. How is that going to kill you? I have gained a subconscious distrust for anyone who doesn’t have a capacity for silliness. People who are too tightly wound up have a tendency of unraveling at the most uncomfortable of times, and sometimes with very explosive results. It’s usually not pretty. I’ve seen it happen several times.
When the whole world is practically enjoying themselves and letting go; when it cannot possibly be detrimental to your position, why not play a little? Halloween and costume parties give you an opportunity to get out of the tightly knit structures of propriety. If you don’t want to go as a slutty cat, or a lifeguard, then you don’t have to. If you don’t believe in gore, violence, or monsters, then don’t go as one. Go as a postman. Go as a lamp post. I mean, really, who has a problem with lamp posts?
It’s just fun. It’s light-hearted play. If it’s not your thing, then stay home and watch a romantic comedy or something. Read a book. Don’t go out and ruin it for everyone else. Or for me, if I’m the only one who thinks this way.
I’m really bad at making costumes, so what I do is try to find people or characters that I can approximate the look. I tried, once, to make a costume with my own hands and ended up with the worst of costumes, always. But at least, it was something to laugh about when I’d get to the party. People holding back their laughter, shouting, “And what did you come as?!”
“I tried to make my own costume!” I’d say, not holding back my laughter.
“Awww… at least you tried,” they’d say. Hugs. Drinks offered. Party ensues.
When I was working at GMA-NMI, our Christmas parties would always be lavish costume parties. Strictly, no costume, no entry. Prizes were given out for the best costume. We had a Disney theme in 2005 and while I don’t remember what I wanted to originally come as, I ended up being Esmeralda’s goat in Hunchback of Notre Dame. I was the goat. I bought furry fabric from Kamuning, wire, and crepe paper (to make the horns), and tried stitching and putting together my own costume. It was dreadful. My friend, Berna, who came as Esmeralda, brought a ribbon and a bell, to complete the picture, and when we had to do the parade of characters at the party, I went on all fours and walked right behind her, like a proud, loyal little goat.
It was awful. The fabric I bought was kind of cheap so I was shedding white hair all over the place. But I had a blast, surrounded by other Disney characters.
It was silly but it was fun and we all had a great time and everybody was in costume and it was memorable and the pictures were so awesome.
Wait, I think I wanted to go as one of the Titans from Hercules. Considering how my goat costume turned out, I guess I’m glad I came as the goat. I probably would have looked absolutely horrible in a home-made, do-it-yourself costume of a titan. Next time, I’ll think of simpler characters and find the appropriate clothes to match. I’m a lot better at that than building anything by my hands.
But it doesn’t matter. I was in a costume. I am not afraid to be silly. I’m silly almost every waking moment. And I’m perfectly fine.