Fall is a time for everyone. Everyone gets to eat all the pie they want, Fresno finally stops being the fiery inferno of hell it was over the summer and the leaves start to change colors everywhere on campus.
With fall comes two of the year’s biggest holidays – Thanksgiving and Halloween. To some, these holidays might seem arbitrary and could just be thrown into a “pre-Christmas” category. However, die-hard horror and fall fans alike converge when it comes to Halloween.
What makes Halloween appeal is its versatility. It can be celebrated in a variety of ways, from trips to your local pumpkin patch to attending a zombie pub crawl in the Tower District.
Perhaps the best part is considering what costume to wear and all of the factors that come into play – picking out fabrics, buying accessories or wigs and watching YouTube makeup tutorials that perfectly capture the ghoulish or gorgeous looks you’re after for this All Hallow’s Eve.
As always, though, there are things to consider when putting together your ideal costume.
For one, cultural appropriation is never OK. Someone’s culture is not a costume. There is never an excuse for racist Halloween get-ups that perpetuate negative stereotypes about a culture. Even if a costume is not inherently offensive, cultural appropriation is still something we should all be aware of and warn against.
Yes, that includes your “cowboys and Indians” couple costume, no matter how clever or cute you might think they are. It’s about the tokenizing of cultures and appropriation for the benefit of a humorous Halloween costume. It’s not OK.
If you’re serious about the Halloween game, challenge yourself to find a costume that goes against the grain of what everyone else is doing. Last year was full of Jokers and Harley Quinns. This year is going to be filled with Pennywise’s with full glam face makeup.
If Stephen King’s famous clown is what floats your boat, go for it. But if you want to go for something more original, consider some classic pop culture icons. Personal favorites of mine include Forrest Gump, Michael Scott from “The Office” or pop music star David Bowie.
Costumes that are easy but also allow room for creativity make for the biggest Halloween hits.
If costumes or Halloween ragers aren’t your speed, make a stop by your neighborhood pumpkin patch and indulge in other fall pleasures like funnel cakes or Ferris wheels. Not only can you pick out the perfect festive gourd, but you can also take the cute Instagram photo you’ve been after for a while.
When you’ve found the perfect pumpkin, you can either keep it classy – leave it plain – or carve your favorite phrase or drawing.
That’s the beauty of Halloween and the fall season, in general. It truly is what you make it. Celebrate however you see fit, but being mindful of cultural appropriation and all the damage that it can do.
So whether you’re hitting all of your favorite parties in the coming weekends or having a relaxing night in carving pumpkins and sipping your favorite spiced cider, embrace the beautiful views and weather of fall and make it your own.