My son always wants to be something gross or scary for Halloween. Having not grown up with brothers I figure it’s a boy thing. He is pretty well versed on my stance on violent weapons, blood, and costumes that look evil, since I must replay the diatribe every time he asks me to be one of these things. This year he wanted to be the Grim Reaper.
“But I won’t carry the big curved sword so it’s really just a big, black cape and hood.”
Not having the energy to go into the plethora of reasons he was not going to dress as the Angel of Death, I just said “No.” (okay, you got me, it was a few hundred No’s) We finally settled on a Mimja costume (He insists it starts with an “m”) for Halloween this year. Fine, I said, but no violent weapons.
“But it isn’t fun being a Mimja without violent weapons,” he whined.
“Well then you can wear the clown costume we already have at home in the dress up box,” I retort. He stayed with the mimja, sans weapons.
My daughter wanted to be anything as long as she could wear a wig.
“How ‘bout a Gypsy?” I asked.
“What’s a Gypsy?” She asked back. (Don’t they teach those kids anything in school?)
She wants to be Hannah Montana. I’m not letting her wear hoochie-momma-teen clothes.
She wants to be a Cheetah Girl. Again, I’m not letting her wear hoochie-momma-teen clothes. I’d really like her to be a gypsy. So what if she doesn’t know what one is? For one thing, we have most of the costume at home. For another thing, we have most of the costume at home. I’ll download some gypsy pics off the internet, we’ll have a brief lesson and she’ll be good to go.
But as I’m wandering the isles of Target trying to find gypsy accessories, I realize that 1) this is taking way too much time, 2) this is going to cost more money than buying a new costume and 3) I’m the one who wants this; she doesn’t even know what a gypsy is. So I head to the pre-fab Halloween costume section, pick up one mimja outfit, and also score a cheetah print dress with cat ears and tail, (the literal translation of “cheetah girl”) all on sale. Done. (And she didn’t get to wear a wig, by the way.)
And there I am, watching the kid’s Halloween parade at school. There are a few princesses, a Harry Potter, a sprinkling of police and fire-people, and a couple classics, like Dorothy from the Wizard of Oz. But by and large the greatest costume populations were singers in hoochie-momma-teen outfits and grim reapers. Of course.
Now call me what you will, but there is something unnatural about seeing a line of black hooded seven and eight year-old grim reapers. Some with sickle. Some with fake blood that you can pump-action down the ol’ reaper face. There is also something disturbing about seeing all the little seven an eight year-old girls half dressed with microphone head pieces. I even saw one girl, dressed all hoochie-momma with a sign around her neck saying, “Paris Hilton-Prison.”
Now parents, if your 1-3rd grader knows the detailings of Paris Hilton news and asked to be this for Halloween—and you let her—shame on you. If your 1-3rd grader has no idea about the Hilton escapades and you thought it would be a funny parody at her ignorance, shame on you twice. And the pumping blood? PUMPING BLOOD I ask you. Who needs to see the grim reaper, let alone his face awash in blood? Perhaps each year’s popular Halloween costumes are a testament to where we are as a society. I remember growing up with the vinyl Sesame Street characters and Princess Lea, and you know what a bunch of pansy-asses my generation turned out to be. Kids these days are so much more knowledgeable and worldly—let’s just call it street smart. I suppose you need that growing up in our world today. So I made a list.
Yes, a list. For parents who may need some more societal inspiration for their children’s Halloween costumes for next year. If your children don’t know what the costume is, you can call it a teachable moment and let your child in on how the world really works. Not only that, but your child just might win the “Most Creative Costume” award next year.
Rachel’s Top Five Most Inappropriate Child Costumes for 2008
1. Hooker- It’s a classic really. They have been around…well…probably since Socrates. Nothing is cuter than a small child in fishnets and tight leather. If you really want to be PC and open-minded, have your boys use this costume too. Nothing says “tolerance” like a small cross-dressing boy hooker.
2. Forensic Pathologist- Have your little muffin dress in a white lab coat, latex gloves (or latex free if they have an allergy), and drag behind them a mutilated body. If you have time and money, you could construct a small gurney on wheels that your child could push, but dragging the body along the pavement will work just as well. It’s already dead after all. This costume would be good for CSI-addicted parents.
3. Meth Lab- Attach a bunch of empty bleach bottles and Sudafed packets to your child’s clothes, and have them carry a couple empty beakers and flasks. You’ll need to get a jump start soon with this one, since the pharmacies now ration Sudafed like bread in Russia. Sick people (like me currently) can’t get a decongestant to drain our pounding heads, but meth labs are having a field day. So, if you and your spouse both start purchasing them now, by next Halloween you could have a good collection of packages to attach.
4. Hazmat worker-The next generation of “Dirty Jobs!” Have your child dress in a white sweatsuit with helmet and breathing apparatus. This could be for cleaning up those messy meth labs, or for cleaning up toxic waste and/or chemical spillage.
5. Polygamist-Wife- This is the easiest costume ever! Have your daughter don a simple peasant style dress, wear a long braided wig (recycle that Hannah Montana wig from this year), and have her carry 10-12 of her favorite baby dolls around. This could also double as a good geography lesson about where Colorado City is located.
These costumes would not only get a good laugh from all those parents and adults who watch the kiddies in the parade, but would provide hours of quality family time while you explain the intricacies and history behind each outfit. What? You say? Your children aren’t ready for that kind of information? Mine either. But apparently there is a large parent contingent that doesn’t have the same kind of filter I do. In fact, I’d love to keep my kids in Elmo, Spider Man and Dorothy costumes forever.
So, weigh in. What inappropriate costumes did you see this year? Any you want to add to the list?