Four Things That Happen When You Dress Up Early for Halloween

By Cazey Williams I know readers have been refreshing their email to see what I'll be this Halloween ever since I wrote about my memorable costumes.

So I guess I'll tell you: I'm going to be a skeleton. "A glam skeleton" according to the tutorial.

Yes, those are females, but I think we can agree that skulls are pretty androgynous. I just won't wear the leggings.

All in all, this costume cost me $20 in makeup – which I think is the scariest part. There was a moment in Target when I debated whether to spend an Andrew Jackson for one night’s play or if I should get another car wash.

Anyway, after my purchases, I decided to practice. Here is what I looked like:

Cazey as a Skeleton

This is what followed:

My mom texted: “I don t like . too scary.” And then “u look too thin. Are u eating.”

Don’t you like how I captured her vernacular? So Baby Boomer.

Anyway, I was proud of my handiwork (yes, I did it myself – with the assistance of my roommate, because me: “How do I put on eye shadow?”), so I sent my mom a pic. And my mom, a former Sunday school teacher, responds that I look “too scary.” Sorta what I’m going for? But I should have expected this. In seventh grade, when I read “The Exorcist” and was obsessed with cryptids like Sasquatch (omg, my worst nightmare) and the Mothman, she bought me some religious texts and instructed me to read “happier things.”

On the subject of am I too thin? Well, if you want to toss a few toward my grocery budget. (But thanks for complimenting the drawn on neck bones!)

You meet your upstairs neighbor.

After submerging my pores in chalk and paint, I had to show it off, so I decided to walk to my friend’s. Except as I’m going out the door, I run into my neighbor. I live in a duplex, so our doors are side-by-side. Neighbor moved in two months ago, and I don’t even know his name other than what’s on his mail, and I can’t even remember that.

We’re going out the door at the same time, and then we pause to stare at each other. I wouldn’t have paused except he’s locked to my face, and I’m thinking, “What is he looking at?” Because you remember how you would forget you have face paint on after a carnival in elementary school until you saw yourself in the bathroom mirror? Yeah, I forgot. (Why can’t we forget when we have zits on our face?) And other than my face, it didn’t look like I’m rearing for a party or something. I’m in flipflops and sweats. I’m your Goth neighbor.

Finally, Neighbor says, “You look good.” And we moved away from our doors.

Your grandmother comments on your photo: “How could someone I know and love change so much????”

This is another one of those generational gap things. On my walk to my friend’s, I obviously had to Facebook (and Instagram) my getup. So I’m checking my notifications, and my adoptive grandmother – aka my elderly neighbor from my childhood – has commented on my photo.

How am I supposed to respond to that? Did we need four question marks? Such a millennial move, that excessive punctuation.

And then I’m mulling, Do I comment back and graffiti my Facebook post (which grandma has already graffiti’d, mind you), or do I ignore her? But poor woman, she thinks I’ve sold my soul to Satan. I decide I’ll comment back in six hours after my post has its heyday without adding to the graffiti unnecessarily. (Does anyone else ever have these thoughts? No one?)

Someone asks, “Have you seen my missing black cat?”

Still en route to my friend’s (I know, will I ever make it?), these two women stop me. They don’t even flinch that I’m wearing skull makeup.

“Excuse me, have you seen a black cat? He’s missing.”

Despite being an extrovert, I don’t do well with unexpected communication when brooding how to respond to Facebook comments, so I just gawk at them. Pursed lips, too. Gotta show those painted on teeth.


scary clown

They hand me a flyer.

“What’s his name?” I say.

I don’t remember his name, so I won’t make it up for this blog, but they tell me he’s just a year old cat, and I keep staring at them. I’m not a narcissist, but are we not going to address I look like a skeleton? (Or do I not? Does my makeup suck?)

No, let’s talk about your black cat that’s missing five days from Halloween. I can’t imagine where it’s gone. I probably look like the freak who took it. Yes, let me help you find it. (I would expand on this tangent, but I don’t want to appear insensitive. I really do like animals.)

Anyway, it was a weird night.

Six Costumes You Maybe Should or Shouldn’t Wear

By Cazey Williams Halloween is close enough that we should all be considering what we’re going to don come October 31st – even if it’s a Dementor cloak to hide our food baby after all that candy corn. So what follows is a history of costumes I’ve memorably fashioned (or envisioned):


This is my signature getup. Stalk Facebook – and even MySpace – and you’ll see I’ve been a vampire since before Edward Cullen was a thing. I also don’t do it like the simpletons aka wear Dollar Tree fangs. No, kids, I use dental adhesive. I also have a cape, gloves, and some Renaissance-esque medallion – we’re talking Anne Rice vampires. On the topic of that dental adhesive, I even made out with someone with those incisors, and they didn’t fall out (!!), though I can’t imagine I tasted very good.

cazey as a vampire

Love’s Prisoner:

This is when things got weird. I was going through a quasi-relationship with a girl who had a boyfriend (not that I endorse that sort of thing, unless you enjoy uncomfortable stories like this one), so why not be metaphorical and angsty? I bought some plastic shackles (the prisoner part), and then I tore up a white t-shirt with a kitchen knife and sprinkled blood on it. Some of that blood ended up on my bathroom carpet, which I still own and step onto after every shower. I focused on exposing my left nipple with said shirt and put a prosthetic wound across my heart. Get it? No? I don’t know…

cazey as love's prisoner

French painter:

This was by far my favorite costume, but the one that received the most criticism because apparently I dress like a French painter in everyday life. (Is it bad I take that as a compliment?) Admittedly, the only thing I bought for this outfit was a watercolor set. And I stole a cardboard box from a dumpster to make a palette and used some computer paper for my cig. But I never would have paired those yellow pants with that striped shirt any other day. Okay, maybe. It’s hard work being a hipster.

cazey as a french painter


This one was last year, and I never made it out of the house because #selfdoubts. Basically, I wrapped myself in a toga (read: bed sheet – though it was a green sheet, because that’s different) and a bought a Dollar Tree wreath for my laurel and even some plastic grapes. The final touch was a handheld mirror. And then everyone was like, “It’s Halloween, not a toga party.” And I was like, “Does no one remember reading Edith Hamilton’s Mythology in seventh grade? I’m Narcissus!” I also didn’t know if my pecs were in prime condition for the wintry night, so I changed into zombie attire.

The Vain Man:

I’m trying to bring Narcissus into the modern age. I’m also afraid I’m just too highbrow for people. Or I overthink costumes. Who is the Vain man, you ask? Well, he’s the one who walks like he’s on a yacht. He has a hat dipped strategically below one eye, and he has an apricot scarf! You probably think it’s you, don’t you (don’t you)?  Oh, so you don’t think anyone will get it? “How To Lose a Guy in 10 Days” came out in 2003, though. Okay, I guess I won’t be the Vain Man this year.

Gym bro:

I haven’t pulled off this costume either, but I think it’s brilliant – and if that’s not a red flag, I don’t know what is. The idea is you wear those toe shoes that they’ve proven are worthless , a tank top that has sleeve openings down to your hips, an iPhone strap around your biceps, and you put a bandana around your forehead. You also have to haul around a gallon of water. Bonus points if you refuse  alcohol on Halloween because #gains. I would do this, but I eat bread, so I’m not sure I want to show my abs.

So now I have two weeks to figure out how I’ll stun the masses on All Hallow’s Eve. Any ideas?

One Size Fits All, Except Me

During my lunch break today, I went over to Party City to get a flapper costume. There were two different options, which was ideal, as my roommate needed one too, so I bought both of them. One was red and marked "one size fits all" and the other was black and marked "large." I neglected the gym to run them home to show my roommate before she headed out for work. We decided that we would each try them on and then pick whichever seemed to fit each person more appropriately. Since she is working, I was the guinea pig for trying them on. I put on the black "large" one first. It fit really well and was long enough that I didn't feel like a total slut. Then I put the red one on.

Let me take a pause here to elaborate on my body type. Full disclosure:

I'm five-six and a size eight.

I'm not a stick, nor would I even say I'm skinny, but I wouldn't say I'm fat either. Yeah, you can tell I eat candy on the reg and, as I already admitted in this post, I am pretty good at making excuses to not go to the gym. But I am by no means a beluga whale.

Now back to the dress. Me and my still-carrying-some-baby-fat-at-22 body got pretty excited to try on the red dress after the general success of the black one. I throw it over my head, and notice it's getting stuck a bit more. I pull it all the way on, and have the pleasure of getting to tug at it to make it sit right. It's shorter and tighter than the same dress in black labeled "large."

Well, shit. How good does that make me feel that a dress proclaiming that it fits ALL is nice and snug on me? On one hand, I'm like "whatevs I guess that costume company is just like Abercrombie and are assholes that exclude fat people," but then on the other hand I'm like, "I'm not actually fat, so why are they marketing this as fitting everyone, when clearly it's not going to?" And then if I had a third hand (so I guess maybe my foot), I'm like, "well, maybe I could hit the gym a bit more, and maybe I do need to lose a bit of chub."

While I try not to let weight-issues bother me, I did used to be a baby meatball and have always had body conscious issues. Little reminders like this always sort of suck. While I'm going to still wear the dress, and going to rock the shit out of it, there'll always be a bit of extra smug snugness there to remind me that everyone apparently is skinnier than me.