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The Scariest Time of the Year

Updated: Oct 1, 2022

Have you ever dressed up as food?

Happy Halloween! It’s pretty exciting to have a column published on Halloween, especially since I haven’t celebrated the holiday in years. Mr. Hockey (my current husband) and I live on a quiet street; we’re the only year-round residents. We don’t get mail, let alone trick or treaters.

The four hockey pucks (our current children) are nearly launched. They visit in the summer, but they don’t spend Halloween with their parents. I’m glad. I don’t want to know what those puckers do. For young adults, Halloween has become the Las Vegas of holidays and whatever happens there needs to stay there.

Some things have changed since I was in the Halloween game. Not the candy. The value-packs still appear on store shelves the day before Labor Day. Candy companies are diabolical. They know we’ll buy the giant bags to “save money.” And they know we’ll eat it all before the big night. Talk about scary.

Big Candy also attempts to pawn off their other products from one holiday to another. I recently saw fluorescent green Frankenstein Peeps. Like coconut flavored M&Ms, Frankenstein Peeps are a monstrosity. Peeps should be shaped like chicks or bunnies and be available only at Easter. I’m a candy purist and won’t entertain these non-canonical spin-offs just to help the Peeps people increase their market share.

The best candies are Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, Kit Kats, M&Ms (plain or peanut, only), Nestle Crunch, Hershey Bars, and, Three Musketeers, in that order. No Snickers. No Starbursts. And certainly no Almond Joys. A lot of people won’t agree with my rankings. I might be the only person on this planet who still eats Nestle Crunch bars. Please be kind when you email your complaints and remember that the views espoused in this column do not represent those of the paper.

The Halloween industrial complex is expanding. Have you been in a Party City lately? About 75% of its shelf space is devoted to Halloween decorations and costumes. FYI, they also have the candy value-packs if you’ve eaten yours.

Of course, we don’t have to drive to Party City for our Halloween needs. Between Amazon and other websites, we can get our costumes on our doorsteps (I can’t, as I said, we don’t get mail at our house, but I’m not bitter). The variety of adult costumes increases every year. I remember when I was younger, we could only buy cats, hippies or clowns – the most terrifying of costumes. Or we had to make our own. Mr. Hockey says that the best costume party we ever went to, was the year I dressed as a homemade mime and couldn’t talk all night.

Maybe I’ve become a little prudish in my advanced age, but it seems the adult costumes are getting racier. The only suggestive animal costume was a Playboy Bunny. In a quick perusal of the costume websites, I found more than twenty “sexy” animals. They’ve even delved into fictional creatures like unicorns and werewolves. Next year there will be lewd Loch Ness monsters, probably called Nasty Nessie.

It turns out, anyone or anything can become a sexy costume. Of course, they’ve got the usual naughty nuns and night shift nurses. Whoever makes up the names are big fans of alliteration; you can be a Sultry SWAT officer or a Viking Vixen. They also like a good pun. I saw an Officer Anita Bribe, a Lieutenant Ivana Misbehave and a Doctor Ken Abyss – with marijuana leaves all over his doctor’s coat.

Kudos to these websites for giving sexy costumes promotions. I didn’t only find sexy nurses and traffic cops. There were also FBI agents, astronauts, a military general, a “take charge” marine and a sultry SWAT commander. It’s empowering to know that hot costumes are succeeding in their careers.

By now you have correctly surmised that I’ve never worn a suggestive costume. My favorite costumes have to do with food. Once I went as a short cappuccino by wearing a large piece of cardboard shaped like a Starbucks cup with a white hat as the foam. Taco Bell is selling male and female costumes based on their hot sauces. They also have a Cheesy Gordita tunic and a burrito bunting for babies.

I found sexy food too. sells chicken sandwich bodysuits and a tight dress with potatoes printed on it, called the “Tater Thot.” I believe the “h” is silent, but when you see the dress, the “hot” is obvious. is a lingerie website that has gotten the Halloween spirit. Most of their offerings are quite spicy, like its Spicy Sriracha dress. They’ve gotten some press this year for their Nicest Neighbor costume, fashioned after Mister Rogers, except the woman is wearing short shorts and a taut red cardigan. Instead of Fred Rogers’ trademark sneakers, the model is in five-inch pumps. I found it truly frightening.

I think the scariest thing about Halloween is how massive the Halloween industrial complex has become. It used to be just for kids, and now we’ve all been sucked in. Nothing is safe, not even Mister Rogers.

However, it’s not half as menacing as the Christmas industrial complex. Last week my satellite radio announced that it was starting a Christmas carol channel on October 25th!

Cue the creaking door and the ominous Vincent Price voice, Christmas is coming, and you won’t be ready…. Be afraid…. Be VERY afraid…. Mwahahahahahaha.

Published in The East Hampton Press, October 30, 2019

Photo by David Meindrey for Unsplash

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