There is nothing that makes you feel more like a failure as *MOMMY* than coming up against crafty Pinterest ladies.
There. I said it.
It’s not that I wish I were more into arts-n-crafts, or more interested in design, or more interested in hands-on creations. I don’t. I’m not interested, and that is pretty much that.
I don’t bake, I can’t sew, I not into horses, I eschew romance novels, I avoid shopping when at all possible, I’m not a collector of shoes or purses, and I can’t stand play dates.
One might ask if we’re talking about a woman or a man. I might punch “one” in the gut. I’m a woman, okay. Not a lady, and not brought up on all that frou-frou cow pucky. But I totally have a vag and I totally love musicals and pink is totally my favorite color. So I get some things right, at any rate.
Also, my babies call me “MOMMY”, so there’s that.
One thing in particular I’ve never been very clever at is picking out or making a decent Halloween costume.
The year before last, my baby doll wanted to Trick-or-Treat as a Littlest Petshop Monkey. We couldn’t afford the krillion-dollar “legit” Halloween costume, so we made do with the home-style version, which she enjoyed well enough — hot pink pajamas teaming with adorable Bobby-Jack monkeys, adorable slippers, and a cute brown hat with a giant puffball. For her tail, we used a brown belt. She — LOVED — it.
Win for MOMMY.
Not everyone agreed, but everyone not agreeing can go straight to hell.
Last year she wanted to be a bat. We were going through a very serious Stellaluna stage in our reading material, so she was stuck on this radar-endowed, flying rodent for months. Do you know how hard it is to come up with a bat costume when you are mentally Halloween costume deficient?
Yeah, we totally wussed out and bought a cheapo store thing.
The intention was for her to wear black leggings and a black turtleneck underneath the Halloween costume, so her arms and legs would be in keeping with the theme. That didn’t end up happening. I got home late from work, and nobody could possibly think of how to dress her but me, *MOMMY*. Everyone around me — all the grownups — were suddenly rendered stupid by the siren announcing Trick-or-Treat GO-time.
“Fuck it,” said I, oh sage *MOMMY* of potty-mouth notoriety.
“It doesn’t matter what she’s wearing under this thing.
Just get it on so we can get to the candy begging.”
She wore the costume over whatever normal clothes she’d had on for school that day. I don’t even remember or care what that consisted of. I can only imagine the colors were something dumb like bright orange or pink — you know, to totally NOT lend to the bat motif we were going for. Whatevs. She — LOVED — it.
Win #2 for MOMMY
and all dissenters kiss my grits.
Every year, regardless of what she wears, my daughter has a blast walking around town, waving to kids from school, crossing the streets in our village like a badass who owns the ‘hood, and marching up to doors all intense with purpose.
Girl takes her candy-ing very seriously.
This year was kind of different.
First, her dad and step-mom purchased her Halloween costume over a month ago. She went as a leopard. Or panther. Whatever. Same thing *. Kind of. I think. At any rate, I had no hand in the planning of this portion of the candy-grubbing. In retrospect, I’m not terribly upset about that.
Second, she had separate Trick-or-Treat activities. Last weekend she went somewhere with her dad and step-mom, so this was the first time we didn’t all team up and go together. Still, double the candy can’t be a bad thing, right?
Third, she wore her Halloween costume and makeup a total of FIVE-freaking-times in a seven-day period. In addition to the aforementioned double Tricks-or-Treats, she also attended a party at our local library, had her class party at school, and went to King’s Island (our local theme park) with her dad and step-mom the weekend prior to last.
So bad math on my part. I guess it was slightly more than a seven-day period. Dramatic effect, though, people. Work with me here. That is still a hell of a lot of times to wear a Halloween costume. Can I get an “Amen”?
By the time our Beggar’s Night rolled around, Baby Girl was effing sick of the whole damn thing. She was like, “Do I *HAVE* to wear makeup?” — and — “Can I just color my nose? By myself?”
Yeah. Yeah, you can. Because it’s about the candy, right? And the good times shared by all. And the hotdogs that our neighbors across the street annually grill for the entire-fucking-neighborhood-I-Shit-You-NOT!
So, yeah, Baby Girl. With regard to your Halloween costume this year, you can do whatever you want.
What’s that? I thought I heard someone in the back of the room ask a question — speak up, please, Sir.
“What the fuck is Beggar’s Night? Sounds political. Or weird.”
Thank you for going there, Sir. You just had to get me started on the stupid, asshole tradition of calling Trick-or-Treating “Beggar’s Night”!
I don’t really know the answer to your question, beyond maybe, “It’s re-wording douchery at its worst!”
It’s definitely an Ohio-ism. Never heard of it till I moved here over ten years ago. Also? Beggar’s Night may — or may NOT — coincide with Halloween Actual. I feel very emotional about this topic. It gets me extremely angry. I’m going to not talk about it anymore.
Back to my daughter’s Halloween Costume.
So there she was, all bundled up against the cold — tights and two pairs of stretch pants to keep warm, along with a t-shirt and sweatshirt up top. And since all the winterizing was layered UNDERNEATH the costume, we’re talking about one badass panther. Leopard. Whatever*.
After the door-to-door part of the night ended, we made our way to the fire station, where *MOMMY* gets judged on her arts-n-crafts skills. I think the whole thing is stupid. Maybe because I have no arts-n-craft skills, or maybe because contests like this are too eerily similar to Beauty Pageants of lore. Or fuck — maybe it’s both, okay? I’m not ashamed.
Anyway, our leopardy-panther girl lost the contest. She didn’t much notice, because she was hopped up on sugar-juice, chocolate, popcorn, and donuts — all provided gratis by the fiery peeps — but I sure as shit noticed.
First place went to a girl in a box.
Second place went to a boy & girl team — each in a box.
Third place went to another kid — in a box.
Well, okay, the boxes were decorated, but still. They were boxes.
First place box was a house. The girl’s legs were sticking out of the box and adorned in black-n-white stockings finished off with ruby slippers. You get it, right? So cute — she was the Wicked Witch of the East. Awesome. And her legs sticking out of a box served a purpose. I approve this Halloween costume.
Second place boxes were a washer-n-dryer. But… their legs sticking out of their respective boxes served no purpose. I cry foul on this win. Imaginative design be damned.
Third place box was a Lego block. And again — WTF gives with those legs sticking out of the box?
See? Now my kid didn’t have a Halloween costume consisting of a box. That is true. But at least her legs were part of her fucking get-up! We were totally robbed.
I’m just not sure I want to pass levies for a fire team who obviously has zero understanding of Halloween costume principles.