Up in the attic of this big old house there is a very important…very special room…filled with costumes. I bought a huge long metal clothes rack at the junk store a long time ago, and it’s now loaded with costumes that I’ve collected over the years from garage sales and thrift shops. When my minimalist partner and I “cleaned it out” one rainy afternoon, I negotiated to keep only 50 pieces of my haute couture collection. I tired to sell it all a few years ago, but too many potential buyers said it looked as if it had been around the block a few too many times. The collection included everything from the pre requisite nun’s habits, to kimonos, gold lame capri pants, white rabbit chubbies (thank you Gary), to enormous stilettos (that fit most of my friends and that none of them can walk in), to evening capes and lots of ugly wigs.
When my friend George and I were shopping for cute numbers to wear for the “Myth America” contest a few years back, I spotted a pink prom dress that had more ruffles than I’d ever seen in my life, and to my surprise George was able to zip the back right up for me..and it fit like a glove. I knew I’d lost an lb. or two on my pre Halloween diet…but I was still surprised that I could slip into it so easily. When I looked at the size 26 label my heart sank, and when George heard me gasp, he immediately tried to restore my self esteem by telling me that it was a “petite 26″. When I added a hoop skirt (naturally) I felt SO much better….not quite “petite” but better.
When we had men here working on our new kitchen they had to bleed all the radiators in the house at one point, including my mother’s apartment on the third floor..and consequently the costume room which is next to her bathroom. Since I wasn’t around, she had to show them where the radiator was. Unwilling to say that all the sequins, feathers, gowns and wigs belonged to her son, and mortified that it all might appear to belong to her, she decided to simply stand silently and utter nary a word. She says it was a very long 9 minutes of her life.
Now my mom is no stranger to having a “creative?” son…once shouting out her third floor window at my buddy Bill and I as we left the house to visit our friend Denny’s new bar (dressed in chenille robes and fluffy slippers with our hair in curlers ” You two should have stockings on..you’re gonna freeze!”. When we stormed into Denny’s with rolling pins in the air shouting “are our husbands in here?”, Denny said “hey ladies..Idon’t even KNOW your husbands!” After his color returned and he recognized us he proceeded to introduce us to his parents who were there for the first time…and we had never met before. It took Denny 28 years to forgive us.
Now my plan on this first week of Autumn was to write something nice about the Fall garden, but with the first frost warning last night…my thoughts turned immediately to Halloween…and a mental inventory of the costume selections. If my partner and I ever split up it’s most likely going to be about the extra flat of icicle pansies…or the red glittery tube top (26 PETITE) that I’ve had my eye on at the local thrift shop. When I coaxed him into the Pickway shoe shop a few years ago and we were trying on enormous black velvet heels with rhinestones, the young guy who was waiting on us said ” you know some guys who buy these things are serious..” to which I replied ” you’ve got to be kidding!…..by the the way, do have any evening bags to match?”.