To Skank or Not to Skank… That is the Questionby Arielle Schussler on Oct, 16 2012
From the infamous words of Cady in Mean Girls, “In the regular world, Halloween is when children dress up in costumes and beg for candy. In Girl World, Halloween is the one night a year when a girl can dress like a total slut and no other girls can say anything about it.”
Don’t get me wrong, I am a huge fan of the mini skirt. In fact, I can probably count the number of days a year I wear pants on ONE hand. However, despite my personal love affair with mini skirts, tutus, and the like… Halloween is the day I can’t help but say, “ENOUGH IS ENOUGH!” You want to wear a box pleated skirt a la current fall fashion to class? Cool. Go for it. But when you wear that, a midriff top, and thigh- highs on Halloween… those cat ears aren’t fooling anyone.
Perhaps Halloween has given the mini skirt a bad rep. While I could spend this entire blog post trying to defend the mini skirt and trying to save what little grace it has left, this is not my intention. In fact, this is not an “apology” for the mini skirt (RE: Socrates, not Mitt Romney). Instead, I would like us to look through three “classics” of female costumes, and deconstruct them…. In the interest of SCIENCE! Ok, so not science. Maybe more like Sociological Inquiry… which sounds pretty fancy nonetheless.
I invite you to go to any Halloween costume boasting website and scroll through the tabs available for “Women’s Costumes.” Upon first glance at a particularly well-known costume website (that would prefer to remain anonymous), I see the tabs “Sexy Halloween Costumes,” “Leg Avenue Costumes,” “Playboy Sexy Costumes,” and “Princess Costumes.” Deep sigh of shame. May I add, that there are no “scientist,” “NASA engineer,” or “police woman” costumes… unless you want one prefixed by “sexy” or “naughty.”
What does this say about our society? Let’s not get ahead of ourselves just yet.
Let us look at Exhibit A of “Classic Female Costume.”
Yes, it has been on the lips of every man since forever (and a couple of my ex- boyfriends’ as well)– The Naughty School Girl or her spin-off, the Naughty Cheerleader.
A classic among classics, we see here the personification of innocence and naivete. Besides the fact that I can’t help but hold back vomit thinking about how costumes like this are available for the 13 and under crowd (don’t. just don’t.) I can’t help but wonder why. Why, out of the cool amazing things you can dress up like (i.e. like Leelee Sobieski’s DNA costume in Never Been Kissed… pre-Spandex), you want to dress up as a 15 year old? I am sorry… I think we aren’t staying true to the theme here. You need to add some pimples, braces, and a terrible home-dye job to get the full School Girl Feel. Your reluctance to observe these important School Girl-esque authenticities can be indicative of either
a) You live in some bizzaro world where the kids of Dawson Creek are actually representative of High School aged adolescents and thus have been throughly lied to for the majority of your adult life, or
b) You are not interested in authentically capturing the school girl look as much as you are interested in authentically capturing the gaze of pedophiles.
Let us move on to Exhibit B, the Lingerie Animal… Aka “I am a Mouse… check out the ears.”
Here we have another quote from the oh- so – quotable Mean Girls,” The hard-core girls just wear lingerie and some form of animal ears.”
While I was looking up that above quote, I stumbled upon a link for a ”Lingerie and Mouse Ears Workout Plan.” Seriously. *Facepalm.* In any event, I am not exactly sure how this constitutes as a costume. Like, you wear that kind of stuff every day… underneath all your clothes. So again, we are faced with either
a) we forgot to put on the actual costume on top, or
b) we are going as ourselves… with animal ears.
In all seriousness though, of all the costume choices you could make, INCLUDING Exhibit A… what is the thrall of the Lingerie and Animal Ear costume? I mean, let’s say you are walking down a bunch of aisles at your local costume shop… why does time stop as your eyes fall upon a perfect pair of mouse ears and WHY THE HELL do you think to yourself, “I have got some really hot panties to go with this?” Conclusion? Save the animal ears and onesies for the toddlers and babies that don’t look pathetic running around in clothes sized 0-6 mos.
Now lastly, the ever adored Exhibit C, the Storybook Character.
While I understand the profound effect Disney has had on your life (believe me, for the majority of my childhood, I had it in my mind that I was going to marry someone named “Eric”)… let it go. Ok, so don’t let it go (god knows I haven’t), but channel it in healthy and constructive ways. I.e., NOT HALLOWEEN COSTUMES. Last time I checked, Snow White wasn’t popping out of her bosom and her ass wasn’t hanging out of the bottom of her skirt. The chick DID, however, choke on a poisoned apple and then waited to be saved in a class coffin. If you aren’t interested in emulating all the gory details — get yourself a new hero. There are so many better people to be on Halloween! Really! And don’t try to sell me on how cute and precious your princess costume is — it looks like all the other Leg Avenue options… just got a different color on top. On a totally separate note: why would anyone ever want to be Little Miss Muffet? No seriously, I want to know. I get the other choices… but Little Miss Muffett? Really? Excuse me while I introduce you to one of my good friends, Charlottte. Get acquainted.
Now don’t get me wrong. I am not under the belief that women must remain covered from head to toe. My own devotion to mini skirts can attest to that fact. HOWEVER, this is the question I want to put out there. On the one day that we can dress up like anything in the world, why the hell are we dressing like this? We can be anything at all, why limit ourselves to looking like an extra in a terrible porno?
While I have heard the other side (re: Jenna Marbles, “Sluts on Halloween”) I still maintain, why, if we can dress up like anything in the world, are we dressing like this? Jenna believes that this is because “normal girls”, who refrain from dressing sexy year round, get their chance on Halloween to do so without repercussions. So now we have another issue, not only that women are dressing like this on Halloween (when they can dress like ANYTHING else), but they are doing so BECAUSE they would be called “sluts” at any other time of the year. That isn’t an issue for anyone else?
I get wanting to look cute, I am all for it. But on Halloween, why not look original with your own punny costume or talented with a DIY creation and save the cute for every other day in the entire year? All I am asking is for us to take a long hard look at our costume choice this year and ask ourselves 2 very important questions:
A) What am I trying to say by wearing this?
B) What are people hearing me say by wearing this?
If you are not happy with either of the answers… time for a new costume.