After finally settling into my new humble abode in Manchester, my favourite time of the year is looming its frightening face: Halloween.
I love Halloween. I love the gore, ability to look like a juvenile fool, and the sweet treats in every bakery window calling my name. Not only do I gain a couple of pounds from eating nothing but sweets, I get to expand my costume repertoire. Much to my disappointment, every possible character for Halloween seems to have “SEXY” involved within the title.
I get it, sex sells. It’s everywhere and shoved in our faces, just like Katie Price’s love life. Last week I was perusing the local costume shop in Manchester’s inner-city shopping centre, the Arndale, for costume potentials, only to leave disheartened. No, Mister Costume Manufacturer, I do not want to be a “sexy pumpkin”, “sexy vampire” or “sexy munchkin”. I want to be Dracula. I want to be frightening. I want to look bizarre. It’s the only time in the year when you can cover your house with haunting decorations and wear Gothic jewellery.
Halloween’s main objective, I find, is to reminisce about your childhood antics of trick-or-treating, including the tradition of putting your hand in a bag of sweets knowing you have a chance of pulling out a satsuma. In my household I knew the Halloween spirit was upon us when I walked into the kitchen to find my father wearing a ridiculous mask, fake blood and fangs, intending to scare the trick-or-treaters away for his own entertainment. Probably not the most sane act, but if my 51 year old father can get into the traditional spirit of Halloween, then surely everyone else can?
But no, it seems the age of dressing up for fun has passed. Halloween nights-out include “sexy bunnies” with netted tights and platform heels, “sexy nurse” with low-cut PVC dresses, and “sexy devils” with red lingerie on full view. I feel like a prude old woman in my full-length zombie costume looking spectacularly horrifying. What I would give to wear a Spam or Heinz baked beans costume to a Halloween party!
Sadly, I will carry on meandering the aisles of costumes shops grimacing at what they have to offer. When I find that swamp monster costume, I’ll let you know.