Occupy Wall Street: 10 Halloween Costumes of the Movement
Halloween is one of the few opportunities we have throughout the year to dress as something else, something that we may never be, something that we may never WANT to be, with impunity and without obligation. And while some blogs are telling us that the costume of the year will be Charlie Sheen or Rick Perry or Michele Bachmann or Sesame Street porn -- and while we were thinking something more along the lines of Lindsay Lohan's teeth, or the poor victimized hot dog thrown at Tiger Woods -- it's clear that what we're all talking about the most these days is Occupy Wall Street. And, so, when we talk about Halloween costumes, how could we possibly exclude it? While the movement got going a little too late in the year for cheap plastic versions to be sold in Ricky's and Duane Reade, we have suggestions that you can easily accomplish at home with a little innovation and some tenacity. After all, that's what the 99% is made of.
10. Occupy ___________. This is your "riff" costume that indicates you keep up with the news but are creative, too. Occupy your town, occupy a party, occupy the streets, occupy Halloween. Occupy your Halloween costume, by which we mean, wear it. And then go do something in it. There are no rules with this one, but somewhere around the 10th time you utter the words "Occupy," you'll look around and see that your friends have all left you and you're standing alone in front of a very creepy house and, well, who knows what will happen. Occupy yourself! This is what Halloween is about.
9. Anthony Bologna. Following the pepper-sprayed shot heard 'round the world, it was revealed that the man behind the spray was NYPD Deputy Inspector Anthony Bologna. You'll need a white, collared, short-sleeved shirt, a mean expression, sunglasses, a badge (don't go impersonating a police officer, now), a quick trigger thumb, and other police accoutrement, depending on how realistic you want to be. Alternatively, you could be a slightly less demonized member of the force, put on a blue shirt, and go around saying, "My little nightstick's gonna get a workout tonight." Add a gleeful laugh, and you're in.
8. The Pepper Spray. Anyone can be a protester, and you can expect to see a lot of them on the streets the night of October 31. It's an easy costume, should you want to embody the stereotype: ripped jeans, T-shirt, protest sign, perhaps a bandana or a Guy Fawkes mask. For creativity, add a pet squirrel to your shoulder, or perhaps you're musically inclined? Tote along some bongos! Or, be something special. Be the pepper spray itself, the instrument that really incited the first sympathies, anger, and major mainstream media attention for the movement when on September 24 it was used on a group of netted-off women by #10, Anthony Bologna. Make it a group outing and bring him along, too (make him carry you), and your lawyer! The more, the merrier.
7. The 1 percent. There are many ways this can be indicated. Have all of your teeth replaced with pure gold. Encrust your body in Swarovki crystals -- nay, real diamonds! Hang a sign on yourself that says "We are the 1%." Or just wear a business suit and carry a briefcase and shout things about smelly hippies. For more empathy despite your bazillion dollars, go as a sad trader (inspiration here). But the best idea we've seen so far to reflect the 1 percent is to dress in a giant cardboard box made to look like a milk carton. Lots of room underneath that for storing candy, we hear. Alternatively, be a literal fat cat on Wall Street. Harder to pull off, but if you can get the costume rented in time, you'll be the talk of the 99 percent. OF FURRIES.
6. An Occupy Wall Street condom. Go with any of the aforementioned. You guys are a cute couple.
5. Edward T. Hall III, a/k/a, the multi-colored tights guy. The pro: This is easy, and, wow, we really just love his tights, and the neon hat is fun, too, without taking itself too seriously. The con: you'll have to go barefoot, which seems...unhygienic? Remember, it is important to take care of the feet, regardless of what percent you consider yourself a part of.
4. The Occupy Wall Street press release email list. What demonstrates the countering opinions within and outside of the movement more than the extremely polarizing press release email, upon which, on a recent Friday, numerous journalists were aggravated into a state of tizzy by all of the replying all within the list as various people asked to be removed from it. "What about take me off this fucking list do you not understand?" beefed one. (We are still, for the record, on it, and we are quite fine with that, but if you should choose this as your costume, be internally conflicted and enjoy pressing "reply all.")
3. A journalist. Almost as important as protesters and those who love them are the many journalists visiting the movement. Sometimes they are real journalists, sometimes they are fake ones. Sometimes they are good, sometimes they are evil. Always, they are in plainclothes, because those are the kinds of clothes journalists wear. You will know them by the questions they ask, the notebooks they hide away, the Tweets they send, obsessively, and the fact that by morning they will be gone, because they had to file.
2. The Hipster Cop, a/k/a, Detective Rick Lee. We know so much about him, and yet...so little. What better way to put yourself in someone else's strong, practical, possibly vegan shoes than to be him for Halloween? Plus: the hoodie-type-jacket-thing will keep you warm and cozy on that late October night, as will the expression of...is that ennui?
1. Your favorite Occupy Wall Street slideshow. The one thing a movement can't get enough of is slideshows, and they are the true emerging hero of Occupy Wall Street. Whether it's "after dark," "Zuccotti hotties," "employed people who are protesting, for real, too" "arrests," "just some stuff," "portraits," or "the cops," there's a slideshow for you to make your Halloween truly one to remember. We have one, too! How do you dress as a slideshow? Excuse us, we have work to do.
Get the This Week's Top Stories Newsletter
Every week we collect the latest news, music and arts stories — along with film and food reviews and the best things to do this week — so that you’ll never miss Village Voice's biggest stories.