Mar. 24, 2017

Halloween Costume Parties

When my daughter, Amber, was just a toddler, about two years old, I dressed her up like a hobo for Halloween. I had bought a black sleeper at Walmart, which had a felt lapel flower, elastic around the ankles so that the shoe toppers covered the shoes and a black felt top hat with a manufactured tear on the top seam. There was also a daisy sticking out of the hat and one the shoe toppers was made to look like a socked toe was sticking out of the shoe.

The hat secured with an elastic chin band so I could put it on her head. I took some blush and reddened her cheeks a little then used a charcoal brick to darken her eyebrows and give her a five O’clock shadow. I tried to model her hobo image to mimic Emmet the Clown’s Clyde the Hobo character.

To say she was cute as a button is an understatement. After giving her a little Jack-O-Lantern Halloween bucket to carry, I took her to the community’s Halloween Party. Needless to say, she won first place in her age group, hands down. Amber was so enthralled with all the different costumes and, of course, she had no idea what was going on, let alone, the significance of her win. She was just happy to be there.

That same year, the same party, my next-door neighbor asked if I would help him dress up for the Halloween party. Scott was seventeen at the time and scrawny, too. I pulled some old clothes out of the closet, a brassiere, some pantyhose, and fitted him with a pair of sandals.

I dressed him up like a woman. I even had a wig he could use. I fixed his hair, his makeup and helped him with the stuffing of the bra so he would be symmetrically even. Instead of a Halloween bucket to carry, I gave him an old purse I had.

As I sat at a nearby table holding Amber, I watched the judges’ line up the contestants in each age group. As they called the older male teens up, Scott picked up his purse, adjusted his skirt and pantyhose and then got in line.
Tommy Scarborough, one of the judges, approached Scott. “Honey, your group is not up yet. This is for the boys’ only group,” Tommy explained.

In his too-deep-to-be-a-woman’s voice, Scott replied, “I am a boy.”

Tommy took a step back and said, “Oh hell! Well, you can sit back down then. You just won.”

I don’t think the other contestants had finished lining up yet when Scot brought home the prize. It was really funny. I was proud that my two enrollees in the costume contest had won.

Years later, when my daughter was a teenager, I helped a friend of hers with his costume: Griffin Lambert. Amber was having a Halloween party and Griffin didn’t have a costume. He showed up at the house early so we got some clothes out and a wig and dressed him up. No one recognized him either when the guests came in until he spoke and they caught his voice.

I had so much fun with those kids! I cannot even begin to tell you. Even though the parties were about fifteen years apart, I had pictures of all three of them in their Halloween garb. Now though, after all these many years later, I cannot find them. It’s okay, though. The memories are still there in the back of my mind. They are very well kept and still cause me to smile and chuckle whenever I think about them.