Halloween is almost upon us.
No it isn’t, you say? It’s actually four months away? What are you yammering on about?
Ok, I hear you. Halloween is a cold weather holiday, and it’s currently one billion degrees outside. Halloween celebrates the dark, but the sun won’t set until midnight tonight (not applicable to my thousands of high and low-latitude readers. Literally THOUSANDS).
Let me rephrase. Halloween is almost upon me. It’s my favorite holiday, but I always muck it up with poor planning.
That’s why I have to start now.
For a guy who likes to think he has imagination, picking a costume each year has proven a major obstacle. I’m tempted to blame it on the same mental blocks I have with cosplay, but Halloween is different.
Halloween doesn’t require any actual courage. It’s the one night each year that adults are legally required to become a different person. I can only blame procrastination and my failure to pick a costume idea.
This is the costume version of writer’s block. It’s costume block.
Let’s be clear what writer’s block is. Writer’s block isn’t the absence of ideas; it’s dissatisfaction with the ideas you do have to the point of inaction.
Nobody has no ideas. They just have ideas they hate.
Likewise with costumes—I can brainstorm plenty right now, but none of them work for me. I dismiss them as unoriginal, too conceptual, or too obscure.
So I’m going to use you. Most of life’s problems are solved on blogs, so I have a good feeling about this. I’ll tell you what I’ve come up with so far, and then you give me your ideas.
Chuck Mangione: My current top contender. Ever since my friend Heather confessed to an irrational fear of the man (just him, not his music), I’ve considered him a Halloween winner.
Pro: Kids love Chuck Mangione. A Mangione-horror mash-up would be a major hit, winning costume contests and major respect. And if I can learn to play “Feels So Good” by the time Halloween gets here, anyone who was in high school band will flip out.
Con: The neck beard is tough. Hard to replicate and bound to be itchy. I’m also not sure where to get a flugelhorn. Or what a flugelhorn is.
Let’s keep Mangione in the “probably” column.
Future modified human: I invest a lot of blog hours on this topic, but we don’t know what modified humans will look like. That’s a costume problem. They will likely look very similar to us, at least for a while. After that, your imagination is the limit.
Pro: Apropos to the blog.
Con: Visually undefined.
Anything from Blade Runner: I could be Deckard. His 80s shirt and skinny tie would be easy to reproduce. But he’s not visually distinct. That leaves the replicants. I don’t think glowing contacts exist yet, so I would need eye implants to mimic the pupil reflection.
Pro: Amazing in dark spaces.
Con: Expensive. Permanent. Probably has negative health side effects.
Nikola Tesla: He has a mythic status these days. Not sure how to represent him visually, but live electricity is an essential element.
Pro: People love Tesla.
Nicodemus from the Secret of NIMH: I’ve thought about this one a lot. I can’t transform into a rat, but all the rest—especially that insane nose hair—should be doable. I don’t have any jokes here; just geeking out over a favorite childhood film.
Con: Difficult. (see? no jokes)
Let Nature Choose: Hear me out on this one. I go out into the forest with no food, water, or shelter a week before Halloween. Whatever I look like when I reemerge on Halloween night is definitely going to look like a costume.
Pro: Unique idea
Stolen Costume: Wait until Halloween night, see a good costume, beat owner over the head, confiscate.
Pro: Minimal time investment.
Con: Morally questionable.
That’s all I have. I need your help. How do you choose? Do you keep it simple or try to go original every time?
Time is a factor—and not just for this year. I don’t think we have much longer with Halloween in its current form. VR and modified reality are hot right now, and only going to get hotter.
Google Glass crashed and burned, but it will be back soon—and completely undetectable this time. As part of eyeglasses again, or contact lenses, or straight into eye implants. I’m not saying this is going to happen tomorrow, but…
I promised myself I wasn’t going to go all cybernetics on you today. I have an addiction. The futurism cookie jar is hard to resist.
Back on mission.
Halloween. It’s coming. I’m not prepared.
It’s looking like Chuck Mangione is the winner so far. Not ideal, but I’ll steal a flugelhorn if I have to.
Help me out, people!