My mother “doesn’t believe in lying to children.” In theory, this sounds commendable. In practice, it means I grew up knowing exactly what awaited the family dog when she died. On the plus side, I got to smile smugly when my classmates whispered about Santa Claus. No wide-eyed Christmas wonder for me.
Maybe that’s why I loved Halloween. Sure, ghosts weren’t real. (How could they be when mom said the dog’s soul would die along with her body?) But this just muted Halloween’s more fearsome aspects, creating instead a bubbling cauldron of eery possibility sprinkled with candy! More candy than I was allowed on all the other 364 days combined. (Another thing my mom didn’t believe in doing was “feeding kids refined sugar.” Yet somehow child protection services continued to ignore my calls.)
What with scoring king-size candy bars from rich people, dressing up like that year’s obsession (In order: Aja from Jem and the Holograms, Scarlett O’Hara, Bette Midler as a Hocus Pocus witch…), and all that uncanny excitement, growing up, I began anticipating Halloween right after the final firework exploded on Fourth of July.
Unfortunately Halloween isn’t as much fun when you’re an adult, or at least one who doesn’t drink. If you ask me, drunken depravity is no replacement for daring a friend to ring the doorbell of a Known Neighborhood Witch, but the fevered thrill children summon so easily seems for some adults accessible only by way of alcohol. Which means most parties are dedicated to the kind of spirits you imbibe, not those you contact via ouija board, so my primary Halloween pleasures now come from dressing up. All the better when I have a partner in crime. Check out my Guide to Qreative Queer Qouple Qostumes. Even if you no longer thrum with Halloween joy when you pass a pumpkin-studded porch, perhaps this will reawaken the part of you still delighted by the minor and absurd.
For The Couple Who Met via Buffy Boards:
Sure, you could go with the tried and true Buffy and Angel, or for the girlie pair there’s always that great slash-fiction wet dream, Buffy and Faith. Not to mention this macabre option: Evil Willow and Dead Tara. Yeah, I hate myself for that one too.
But what if you want to explore the less traveled corners of the Buffyverse? May I suggest: Balding Man and Tray of Cheese, Anya and Bunny, or how about Kendra and Mr Pointy? The uninitiated may mistake you for a Delia’s model and her oddly sharp sex toy, but you’ll know the Slayorific truth.
Let’s say one of you wants to butch it up in your dress browns but the other wants to stay warm and not show her tits. Here’s a great option: A UPS Driver and a box. And yes, by box I mean vagina. But like, you’d dress as a box. But this could also mean vagina. Man, can I deliver a joke, or what? Another option, if you want to go esoteric and vaguely sexual (and who doesn’t, it certainly works for Lady Gaga), how about a sprig of dill and a lump of dough? Think about it for a minute. Maybe say it aloud.
For The Film Noir Cinephiles:
Corky and Violet from Bound. Grab a black slip from that box of discarded goth clothes in your attic, use a sharpie to draw Corky’s Labris tattoo, and voila! Your biggest stresser will be deciding which of your 100000 beaters to wear. Extra points for carrying a fishing line strung with hundred dollar bills.
For The Blue is the Warmest Color Enthusiasts:
Let’s be honest: The scenes between Adele and her food were more erotic than that 13 minute sex scene, so why not hit the party circuit as Adele and a plate of spaghetti? Bonus: Neither of you has to invest in plastic genitals or dye her hair blue.
For The Multi-taskers:
It’s Halloween so obviously one of you wants to be SEXY. Because nothing says sex like a Christianized feast initially influenced by Celtic Harvest Festivals. However, the other is focused, always on Visibility! Education! Feminism! And neither one of you wants to risk your feminist street cred by showing up as a sexy ebola patient. (It’s a real thing). Your solution? Sexy Gertrude and Alice. Unbutton a couple extra buttons on your high-necked blouse, strap on a pair of porn star heels, and pencil in a mustache. Oh, and if you’re involved in a triad, one of you can go as the poodle. Kinky!
Or how about a Lusty lady Stripper and a Worker’s Unite Protest Sign? May I also suggest a two person scissors? Each of you is one leg, and you can carry a sign that says “Despite what straight people think, this is not the primary lesbian sex act.” It’ll have to be a pretty big sign though.
For The Current Event-Savvy Team
Not only is the personal political, the sartorial is an opportunity to comment on current cultural events. So here are your options: Two brides of Frankenstein or Ellen Page and a Door. You’re welcome.
For The Classic Couple:
Nothing wrong with Gabrielle and Xena. Some television shows never go out of style. Because they were never in style to begin with. (I’m just bating you now.)
For The Aware Pair:
You know about all the stereotypes and even if you embody some, you’re not afraid to mock them. In other words, you’ve got a sense of humor! Congratulations. Are you sure you’re gay? (Sorry. Couldn’t help myself. Has anyone ever told you you’re sexy when you’re mad?)
Your choices: Two Person U-Haul, you’re the front wheels, she’s the back. An artist and her muse—because we’ve all heard some pretentious lesbian refer to whatever new girlfriend as her muse, even if she’s a garbage collector.
For The Butch/Femme ’90s Nostalgic Couple:
Angela Chase and Jordan Catalano. For YEARS I tried to get my girlfriend to do this one with me. It would have been perfect. My Angela-hair-behind-ear-impression is legend, and not only could my ex rock a leather strap necklace, but I’m pretty sure she couldn’t read.
For The Paranoid Pair:
You know every dyke has a nemesis, even if it’s just that banker up the street who refuses to recycle. You’ve seen him, mixing his bottles and his ORGANIC WASTE. One day when he’s not looking—um, but back to Halloween:
Your options: Melissa Etheridge and Angry Tammy Lynn Michaels: One of you spends the whole night talking mumbling fervently about “my truth,” and the other carries a box of sex toys and cries.
For the Adventurous Old Timers with ACL Injuries and a Love of the Open Sea, Diana Nyad and her jellyfish nemesis.
For Cliche Lovers with an S&M Twist:
She’s a Home Depot employee. You’re a bitchy straight housewife who insists on organic ant spray. Or maybe I’m just talking about your fantasy life. Or your real life.
For The couple who—against all odds—hasn’t succumb to irony:
Brittany and Santana, Taylor Swift and Lena Dunham or Idgy and Ruth from Fried Green Tomatoes.
For The Literate Duo:
(Side-note: If I ever partner up with someone to become super heroes this will be our title.) Vita Victim and Virginia Werewoolf. Sure,Vita is said to have been the predator in this literary couple, but veracity pales next to the opportunity to dress as a werewolf and still wear comfortable shoes.
For The couple that might as well be twins anyway:
Just embrace it. Grab a couple of striped T-Shirts and go as Tegan and Sara or Cameron Esposito and Rhea Butcher, they’re twins too, right?
The couple who loves Gilmore Girls as much as Transparent and doesn’t care if I’m the only one who gets your costume: The femme/butch Melora Hardin.
And if you’re boring?