“Quit your bitching, Rebecca.”
That’s what my Dad told sobbing little 8-years-old me as he shut in the back of our clunky station 1980’s-era station wagon while I sat mourning over the fact that I’d tripped and ripped a hole in not just my costume, but my knee as well. I watched him walk the other kids we’d gone out trick-or-treating with up the driveway of some house in a neighborhood nearby to ours as I sat in the back and raged. Not in the fun “let’s take drugs” type of way people our age rage now, but in the angsty “I am 8 and I scraped my knee and WHY IS NO ONE PAYING ATTENTION TO MY PAIN” way. That was the year I’d gone dressed as a cheetah and had my Mom color my nose black and draw whiskers on my face so I looked even more “fierce.”
“Make sure not to wipe your face,” she told me as she made an attempt at drawing straight lines across my cheek, “If you rub any of the whiskers off you won’t look like a cheetah anymore, will you?”
“Nope!” I responded with a smile, knowing that a nauseating amount of candy was about to come my way in less than an hour (assuming we skipped the Peterson’s house, because they always gave out fruit and no one wants a goddamn banana for Halloween when they’re 8).
But my whiskers were no more as I rocked back and forth cradling my scraped knee. Keep in mind, I’m 8. A paper cut had a 50/50 chance of sending me into cardiac arrest at this age, and had I known what morphine was I probably would’ve sold my little brother for a dose (he was a little shit back then…but he’s okay now, I guess). And while no one really vividly remembers shit that happens when they’re little, I can distinctly remember saying the following right before my Dad and the other kids piled back into our car so we could go rob the next house of all the Reese’s before anyone else did:
“This is the worst holiday ever.”
While I was obviously being an overdramatic little snot, I didn’t realize how true that was until I made it to college. Answer me this: how is Halloween different from any other day of the year while you’re in school? When you’re in grade school you walk around with friends and hoard candy so you can go back home hours later and eat so much that you puke. FUN. But there’s no candy in college, only Zelko and Burnett’s and beer pong. Yeah that’s cool for a minute, I guess…but how is that different?
What did you do last Friday/Saturday night? You went out, drank cheap vodka, hit on a couple chicks and maybe played beer pong. What did you do the weekend before that? You went out, drank cheap vodka, hit on a couple chicks and maybe played beer pong. Which is, and feel free to correct me here, the exact same thing you’re going to do two weeks from now, albeit in some shitty dollar store costume you picked up last minute because you realized no girl wants to talk to the guy wearing normal clothes on Halloweekend.
Oh, and speaking of girls, that’s nothing new either. I’d imagine that up until this point you were thinking to yourself “Yeah whatever, girls are in COSTUMES, that’s TOTALLY different,” except not. Sorry to burst your bubble with a little dose of reality, but if you’re in Greek life you know what I’m talking about. There’s no such thing as a social (where a sorority has a party with a fraternity, all those not initiated) without a theme, which means that every weekend is basically a miniature Halloween. Boats and Hoes? Boom, there’s your sexy sailor. Heaven and Hell? SHAZAM, that’s your sexy devil. I mean for fuck’s sake you could even do a “Mental Patients and the United Nations” theme mixer and show up wearing stupid shit like this:
And even if you’re not in Greek life you’re still going to be doing the same routine you do every weekend. You’re not 21 yet so you can’t go to a real-people bar or even any club worth it’s salt, which means you’ll be going to the same bar you and everyone else go to, which means you’re going to be seeing the same people doing the same things, albeit dressed a little skimpier than usual maybe. There is almost literally no difference between a party on October 30th versus a party on October 31st aside from that on the latter you’ll see a bunch of guys wearing sunglasses walking around in groups of three with canes claiming to be “Three Blind Mice.”
Sorry if “Three Blind Mice” was your costume idea, but honestly it’s a really fucking stupid go-to in the first place. You couldn’t at least shell out for some cheap Mickey Mouse ears to go with it? We both know that the day leading up to Halloween you’re going to be sitting in your dorm thinking “Eh whatever, I’ll just put on sunglasses who cares,” but come Halloween night you’re going to feel like a salmon in a ball pit, aka fucking stupid. See everyone around you with good costumes? Sure they wasted time and effort all for one night of the year, but at the same time you’re standing out as the lazy buttfuck who was too unimaginative to come up with something at least moderately clever. You couldn’t have at least thrown on a transparent raincoat, slicked your hair back and snagged an axe from Home Depot so you could be a cheap Patrick Bateman?
Don’t lie; Halloween was made for the 2% of people who are clever enough to come up with something “witty” just so everyone else can remember how bland they are in real life for the remainder of the year.
Maybe Halloween isn’t the “worst” holiday ever (that prestigious award gets reserved for Columbus Day since it’s actually pointless), but it’s possibly the most redundant one. On Christmas you get presents, New Years marks the day you start going to the gym for an entire month before blowing it all out your ass and at least on St. Patrick’s Day you have a good excuse to be belligerent before noon. But Halloween? Nah. It’s the same as the day before.
Oh, and in case you’re wondering, my Mom sewed the hole in my costume up about 20 minutes after I’d managed to shut the fuck up with all the crying. In hindsight, maybe that Halloween wasn’t so bad…but when you’re old enough to look at it from an objective point of view?
Ugh. Why bother.
[Header image via Shutterstock]