Ray Cochran writes:
Why do people get so jacked-up about Halloween? Particularly the gays. Why do gays go all mental over Halloween? To me, Halloween is for people who work in banks. Or, whenever I see a couple dressed up – you know, he’s in fishnets and high heels, she’s in a Caltrans jumpsuit with dirty nails and carrying a shovel – I always think there’s something they aren’t working out in the bedroom.
But it’s mostly the gays. It’s totally exhausting. The last time I dressed up for Halloween was for a party in West Hollywood. The host was like the gay version of Bree Van De Kamp. He had lots of rules. First, you couldn’t come to the party if you didn’t dress up. And in addition to the five different kinds of pigs-in-a-blanket and all-you-can-eat chili bar, he had door prizes (I think I won a Sade CD), a very complicated pumpkin carving contest with some serious carving tools and a lot of different categories, and a Best Costume contest that had a point system to rival the Olympic gymnastic events. He took photos of every person’s costume, logged them, hung them, and then had judges from various “visual disciplines” make the final decisions. It took me a week to recover. NEVER AGAIN.
NOT SO FAST. It turns out my boyfriend is one of those gays. He wants us to theme dress. He’s very excited. Saturday we went to The Huntington Library to look at art and eat finger sandwiches. We were standing in front of Gainsborough’s Blue Boy and Lawrence’s Pinkie and I could see his mind working. I knew where he was headed. HELL NO. So then I started doing some thinking myself. OK, if I’m going to have to do this, we’ll do something simple. I know! ’70s porn! Those little nylon soccer shorts and tube socks. Simple, easy. But then this morning, I woke up and went to check my email on his computer. Lying on his desk was a downloaded picture of the painting American Gothic and my heart sank. He’s 6’3″, very lean and balding. And I’m 5’9″. See where this is going? I’m gonna do it but I’m not gonna like it. Unfortunately, I won’t be the one carrying the pitchfork.
– Ray Cochran
[Check out Ray’s Liza Minnelli encounter on Fresh Yarn, the Online Salon for personal essays.]