My Best Halloween Costume to Date
Every year, my office celebrates Halloween with a potluck and costume parade. Costumes are "strongly encouraged." Last year, I threw on a Giants jersey and called myself a "baseball fan." It was my first Halloween with the company and I didn't really know the extent to which people dressed up. I wanted to play it safe. This year, I have taken a different approach.
Initially, I was going to do a group costume with other coworkers. We were all going to dress up as our Director of Operations, but we talked about it so much, that eventually the idea lost steam. Then, we thought about going as 80s rockstars. I wasn't inspired by that suggestion. Soon, the group was breaking off into doing individual costumes.
I wanted to dress up as something easy, original, and not too costly. I googled "easy costumes" and "last minute costumes" and received tons of options. But, it felt lame to copy an idea of the internet. I was pondering all this while at work. In the midst, of my research, I looked at my desk and immediately spotted what I could be for Halloween.
I work at Rockefeller Center and to access the building you need a special badge. It is a burgundy color, with my name written across it, and a barcode to scan into the building. The badge was sitting on my desk as I was contemplating what to do for a costume. I knew that I could buy a piece of foam core, paint it burgundy, and attach sticker letters and construction paper to create my name and barcode.
I knew it was a great idea, but I also had the voice in my head asking, "Do I really want to go through all the effort to get this done?" I have a voice in my head that sometimes talks me out of things. I did feel deep down that I wanted to at least attempt the costume. So, last Friday night, I went off to Home Depot and Michaels to buy all the necessary supplies.
The trickiest part would be to cut out an opening for my head. The sales clerk at Home Depot offered advice on how to use an X-acto knife safely and efficiently. Saturday night, I started my task. I laid out a ruler and slowly started cutting (don't worry, I didn't cut myself). Then it was time for the fun part, painting. I painted the white foam core burgundy and left it to dry. The final step would be to add the letters and create the barcode. The barcode would take some time. Tuesday night, I set out the final elements and started applying them. I felt what I haven't felt in a while, artistic flow. I had music going as I peeled out the letters and applied them. I was beginning to really enjoy the process and feeling so pleased with how the costume was turning out. I checked the time and an hour had flown by. I was having fun. It was a surprising feeling given that I'm not big on costumes or Halloween. I had also expected the attempt to be a failure and instead the opposite was true. It was a success.
I had wanted to take the easy way out with a costume. I even considered throwing on my Giants jersey for a second year, but I'm glad I followed through with creating a life-sized badge. Working through it gave me something I haven't felt in a while, artistic flow. The feeling gave me access to a part of me that I sometimes sequester away, my artistic self. The process reminded me of being a kid and working on arts and crafts projects. And those were fun moments.
The work party happens today, but I am writing this piece a few days prior. I can't tell you how excited I am to showcase my costume. And I am grateful to this costume for granting me access to my inner kid artist.