This year, I suppose, seasonal parties will be awash in Balloon Boys, Michael Jacksons, zombies, and Amy Winehouses (or was she last year? I think she was). While twenty years ago or so there were at least a lot of Michael Jacksons and zombies, my own favorite costume dates from a fateful, fabulous costume ball of that era at which my pal The Professor (at the time, I suppose, only The Aspiring Grad Student) and I went as Raisa and Nancy.
I wore a sensible vintage suit with a fur hat; he wore a red velvet swing coat that parted to reveal a tasteful hospital gown (this was right about the time of the first lady's mastectomy - classy, huh? Oh, yes, of course he had a pair of strategically placed crossed bandaids, too). He topped his look with his every-year ratty frosted wig that had first appeared sometime around 1982 when he was a Flo-like slutty waitress (The AH pretty much specialized in what we locally referred to as "booger drag"; I tried for something more glam, but usually ended up looking like an Avon lady). My own hair, under the mink, was abundant enough at the time that it could be blown out into a reasonable approximation of the Russian bob-shag crossover. We each carried a little flag with which we sparred on cue, sometimes causing the bottle of vodka to fall out of my pocketbook.
Okay, subtle it wasn't, but we had a hell of a time. This year, if I had the chance and if it weren't so full of potential for offense, I'd be tempted to once again pick up the first lady theme and go as the remarkable Mme. Chantal. We're actually going to a Hallowe'en party, but have a feeling that Mr. Muscato and I will eschew the outrageous and just dive into our stock of ethnic clothes from places we've lived. And you - any plans?