Tonight may be the official night of Halloween, in which kids in costume go trick-or-treating from house to house, but for many of us last Saturday was the real deal: The night we got dressed up and hit the most happening parties we could find.
But while some people rose to the occasion with the most creative and elaborate costumes they could muster, they were as usual outnumbered by the people who phoned it in -- the ones who didn't make any costume plans until they were about to head out the door, and even then did so reluctantly.
So how could you tell the difference? Here are the Top 10 outfits you likely saw over the weekend that were obviously chosen at the last minute -- perfect ideas for those times you have to attend a costume party, but don't really want to work for it:
1. 1970s guy: Just put on that crazy, big-haired wig, and you're all done. Access to the party granted!
2. 1970s guy (clown version): They sell those wigs in rainbow colours, too.
3. Hippie: Borrow your sister's necklaces, tie a bandana around your head and source a tie-dye shirt from the bottom of your closet. Like totally easy, man. (Not to mention very boring.)
4. Hockey player: "No worries, I'll just grab some pads from my hockey bag, put on my jersey, and I'm ready for the Halloween kegger. Sweet!" You do, however, get extra points for having a costume that comes with an added sensory element -- the smell will be nothing if not highly authentic.
5. Business man: This one doesn't really work if you actually work in a business environment, but if you're a slacker and stuff, it's hilarious - all you need to do is find a suit. (And this year it was possible to add an element of political awareness to the deal: "Don't you get it? I'm dressed up as a member of the 1%. Occupy now!")
6. Julius Caesar: To be honest, even though it's easy to just wrap a white sheet around yourself, it still takes a bit of commitment to wear it out in public, especially if it's cold.
7. The opposite sex: This can still be a pretty great costume if it's done well, although it does speak to a certain amount of last-minute desperation ("What am I going to wear? Um, um ... Oh forget it, I'll just go in drag, people will think it's hilarious.")
8. Head banger: This used to be the most awesome Halloween costume ever, but ubiquity has kind of taken the fun out of it - though it's still really easy to put together.
9. Boba Fett: OK, for most people this would be really hard to pull off and would require a lot of time, effort and investment. But if you're one of those Comics-Con guys who dusts off your Star Wars outfit every time you have the chance, this is still equivalent to phoning it in.
10. Sexy nurse: You know you can buy these costumes at every dollar store, gas station and newsstand in the country, right?
If you still plan on going out for Halloween (Monday be damned!) but don't want to invest in dressing up, then any of the above suggestions will work. If, on the other hand, you're disheartened by the thought of boring Halloween costumes, never fear: There are still lots of people out there making a serious effort. Here are a few of our favourites so far this year:
1. See-through iPad man.
NASA engineer Mark Rober put two iPads and some red sauce to work, creating the effect of a gaping hole through his torso, through which the other side of the room can be seen.
2. Princess Vader
If Boba Fett is a lame nerd costume for boys (at least if you fit the description listed above), what about a pink Darth Vader costume for girls? That actually qualifies as adorable.
3. Whiskey and cigarettes
We take the campaign to do away with offensive costumes very seriously: Dressing up a nine-year-old as a sexy nurse is just a terrible idea, and the sooner parents come to realize that the better. But what about dressing up your child as a walking health risk? In theory it's inadvisable, but there's still something pretty awesome about this father-son homage to vice:
Of course, we'd be remiss if we didn't take this opportunity to show you a totally unnecessary picture of a cute baby in costume, which, as has been well-documented, is one of the world's most awesome things. Especially this one: