Wednesday, October 31, 2012


Scary Monsters and Super Creeps

The Girl dressed as a Tootsie Roll, and The Boy as a Jawa from Star Wars.  

They were endearing, but not scary.  I had front door duty.

Fears change, with age.  If I were to dress up as something really scary, I might go as:

- The Program That Wouldn’t Die.  I’d be a zombie with low enrollments, high fixed costs, a powerful ally, and a political minefield.  “Funds!  Eat Funds!”

- MOOCman.  90 percent of my costume would be missing by the end of the night, since that’s their attrition rate.  

- Hatchet Harry, the Human Budget Cut.  Picture a really angry accountant wearing a tricorner hat, like the Tea Partiers.  Or maybe Santa Claus with a suit on backwards, to symbolize a midyear budget cut.

- The Politician with a Brilliant Idea.  I’d have a lightbulb suspended over a dunce cap.

- An Extended Power Outage.  Dress all in black.  It’s a New York reference twice.

- A standardized test.  I could wrap myself in bubble wrap, popping one out of every four bubbles randomly.

- A glob of cholesterol.  It might put a damper on the whole ‘candy’ thing, though.

- A home contractor.  I’d show up, then leave unexplained for weeks, then show up again, then vanish again, leaving an awful mess in my wake.  

- An “Explanation of Benefits” from an HMO.  I’d wear a twisted glob of spaghetti that doesn’t smell quite right.

- Comcast!  I could dress, and walk, like Mr. Magoo.

- My hairline.  But I wouldn’t want to get arrested for indecent exposure.

Wise and worldly readers, what costume would you find truly scary?

I was going to dress as a programming bug. I was going to be a computer screen with a bunch of error messages on it. Other alternatives include e blue screen of death, the sad Mac, or worse, that weird code you get when your Mac is broken beyond the sad Mac.

And at this point, the common app is a little terrifying.
"Mission Creep." An army helmet, a corporate ID lanyard, several fake arms and legs, arrows pointing in different directions, and an inflatable bladder over my stomach that, when I'm asking for candy, expands in front of everyone's eyes.

Plus, of course, I'd be all creepy anyway.
A P-card administrator.
Here are some more candidate scary Halloween monsters:

Tenured Full Professor: Dressed in regal robes reminiscent of Henry VIII and displaying a whole bunch of attitude. Comes in seated in a sedan chair carried by a whole host of struggling graduate students, assistant professors, and adjuncts.

Cable Company Teaser: Nude hot babe with various labels concealing the “naughty bits”—labels like “Six Months for only $19.95”; “Free HBO for 3 months”; “Free DVR for 1 year.”

Weather Channel Dude: Dressed in a rain slicker and hood bearing Weather Channel logo. Standing knee deep in water with raging surf in the background, pelted by intense rain, being blown hither and thither by severe winds, and shrieking into a microphone, obviously relishing the bad weather he is experiencing.

Eternal Political Campaign: A room in Hell, where the unfortunate soul is seated in front of a television screen, condemned to watching negative political ads for the rest of time, Listening forever to phrases and slogans like “Job-killing tax hikes”, “Keep Big Government out of my life,” “Save Medicare and Social Security," “Restore leadership.” and the like. Periodically the phone will ring, with a robocall saying things like “If you knew that Candidate X were a child molester, would you be less or more inclined to vote for him…”

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