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Creative costuming

Maddie Hanna | Sunday, October 31, 2004

“Halloween is the one time a year that a girl can dress as slutty as she wants and no other girl is allowed to say anything about it.”

This revelation strikes Cady (Lindsay Lohan) in the movie “Mean Girls” as she arrives at a Halloween party and realizes that her full-length witch’s dress and intensely gory makeup differ significantly from the revealing Playboy bunny costumes spotted on almost every girl in the room.

Scary is out; sexy is in. My question: where is the line between appropriately sexy and flat-out slutty?

I’m not sure where I stand on the “dress slutty or else you will be branded as a social misfit and Halloween loser” rule. This is possibly because I never really celebrated Halloween much in high school, meaning I jumped from junior high trick-or-treating to college partying.

When I was little, I was the chubby kid in a zebra suit two or three years in a row. Now, I’m expected to be the naughty nurse, the bad cop, the French maid.

I must admit, part of this appeals to me. After all, as a freshman in college, moved out and moved on, I love the feeling of having my parents hundreds of miles away and being able to breathe without them hovering over my shoulder. And for a girl, what is more rebellious and liberating than dressing provocatively and not caring what anyone thinks?

Which leads me to my second question: is this actually liberating, or is it simply conforming to the collegiate Halloween standard?

Once in high school, I decided it would be funny to wear a child-sized giraffe costume and drive around, just because I could. My friends and I went into Dairy Queen and Blockbuster, harassed the employees and made small talk with random customers.

It was hilarious. Mostly, I got the stare of blank confusion, which wasn’t really a surprise considering I live in generic, uneventful suburbia where giraffes aren’t exactly running rampant.

But despite the fact that some kid caught my escapade on video and that I ended up summoning my inner giraffe for two future school projects, I was not ostracized. I was not forever dismissed as the “giraffe girl.” In fact, most people thought of the giraffe as I did – hilarious.

This year, I went as an angel for my first college Halloween. White outfit, white boots, and of course, the requisite white halo. Easy enough to pull off, not overly revealing, but cute enough to be socially “acceptable.”

However, when I walked into Siegfried, the rector laughed and said, “Hey, you’re the fifth angel to come in here tonight!” After that, I started to wish I had worn something a little more creative.

And I can’t help but wonder where my zebra suit is.