This is what I’ve been telling people this year: Every year when Halloween costume time rolls around, Micah and the kids and I have a discussion and we sketch out some Halloween costume ideas. We say, “That sounds cool, let’s do that.” And then we get to work. Micah makes some real sketches. He tells me his plans while I stare at him uncomprehendingly. I ask him what kinds of materials I need to gather. And then, after I sit with it for a few days I say, “This will never work. Micah, it’s all on you.” And I wash my hands of it.
Which is not to say that I actually don’t touch it any more. I still do whatever Micah tells me to do. But I do it blindly, without the belief that these costumes will be any good. Every year I am very suspicious that things will come together and that we’ll have anything worth memorializing come October 31st. And then every year, when the costumes are actually donned and everything is put in its place, I am blown away by Micah’s vision.
This year we settled on “mythical creatures with horns” as our family theme. (It turns out that Micah mostly just wanted to make a bunch of spray-foam-and-paper-mache horns for the thrill/challenge of it.) Simon decided on a faun (like Mr. Tumnus), Oliver requested a purple dragon, and Elsa rolled with the punches and embraced the jackalope we thought would be hilarious/cute/thematically appropriate. Micah wore mythically large ram horns, and I wore a unicorn horn that proved to be especially handy when our faun ran ahead of us while trick-or-treating and used it to find his way home.
As always, Micah and I stayed up way too late several nights putting things together. The faun’s vest was a last minute addition that I thought would keep me up all night but ended up being shockingly simple (mostly because I “junk-sewed” it—no finished edges or ironing) and the perfect thing to finish the costume.
And as always, it was gratifying to hear people on our trick-or-treating route talk about how cool the “horned family” was.
Well played, Mr. Heiselt. Well played.