We did it. Our Halloween costumes met all my criteria: creative, affordable, comfortable, and not a lot of makeup or fuss. 

Better still, the Carpenter broke personal protocol and suggested we dress as a set. He was a Swiffer sweeper. I was a dust bunny. Picture that. Go ahead. I’ll give you a minute.

It’s not a bad metaphor for our relationship really. He is the straight and narrow one, focused and detail oriented. 

Me? I hop about and generally attract mayhem or create my own. If I get myself into a tight corner or want to hide under the bed, he swoops in and saves the day. He always knows how to tidy up whatever comes along.  

Little known fact about the Carpenter: he is a really fun guy who loves Halloween. But he doesn’t do couples’ costumes. He prefers his individual status on this holiday where he can be anything and anyone he wants under the guise of a costume. It’s his opportunity to fly his freak flag all the way up the pole, and I like this side of him. 

When he commits to a costume, it’s a full-on committal. Like the time he shaved his head for the screening of the Rocky Horror Picture Show, to claim first prize in the costume contest as the creepy butler character Riff Raff. 

Or the terrifying clown mask he wore and mistakenly jumped out in front of a female friend of mine, who, in her fright, punched him hard on his big clown nose. That was funny.

Or the time he soaked ripped strips of bed sheets in a pot of tea for his mummy costume. Once dry, he spray-glued the strips in layers to a one-piece painter’s jumpsuit, which was smart because it had a zipper for bathroom breaks. 

What was less smart was laying the suit down on our good hardwood floor and spray-gluing the strips onto the suit, without, you know, a drop cloth. For days, our socks were sticking to that floor, and nobody knew why until the sun hit the spot just right and I could see the outline of a body. Then it all made sense. 

But the Swiffer sweeper idea was inspired. A gray track suit for the silver stick, a green toque for the green top, Swiffer cloths tacked on to his clothes, and shoes he hand-painted in green and blue Swiffer branding colours. Done.

He thought that idea up fast given I had only declared my dust bunny status on the Friday night before the Monster Mash party we were attending. 

My daughter gave me the idea. All I needed was a tracksuit, sneakers, rabbit ears and a tail, spray glue and a bag of dryer lint (yes, I keep the dryer lint in a bag for just such an occasion), and poof, you have a dust bunny.  

The Carpenter, who, as noted above, is clearly the only person qualified to use spray glue inside our home, remembered the drop cloth this time and thoroughly glued the surface of my clothes. Then, he dabbed globs of dryer lint all over the outfit. Big globs. It was messy. Puffs of black and grey clumps. It looked dirty and gross. 

He was having fun, though he declined to give me lint cleavage and the tail he created was, well, dreary for dramatic effect. 

Still, Swiffer sweeper, you can sweep me off my feet, anytime.

WriteOut of Her Mind