Saturday, October 24, 2009


Edward refuses to wear a costume on Halloween. He has witnessed, what he feels to be, the appalling menagerie that prances down his street once a year on the last night of October - that traveling band of his own kind, canines of every shape and stripe, dressed in the most ridiculous getups he could ever imagine. A spaniel Darth Vader, a beagle Harry Potter, a poodle masquerading as pink fairy princess. What could their people be thinking? He sees them, he shakes his furry head, he sighs. His dignity is so manifest I would never dream of asking him to participate and really, I think I understand his feelings. No doubt his thoughts are akin to my own when I happen to spy some poor chap dressed as the Statue of Liberty in front of a tax office in April. Human stature slips a rung.

Costumes are tricky. If you have ever found yourself clad an ensemble that caused you to feel dreadfully out of place - a walking oxymoron of sorts - then you will know what I mean. I well remember the one time I was seduced by a jacket in the Anthropologie store. I generally shop there for unusual bits of kitchenware, perhaps a bar of soap that smells like mimosa, or a candlestick the colour of dawn. But I give the clothes a wide berth, knowing they are meant for others. So perhaps I had a fever that day, or maybe my inner compass momentarily slid from its moorings, but I spotted a colourfully embroidered jacket and I was intrigued. I decided to try it on. Once in the dressing room I held the garment out in front of me trying to decipher exactly who it reminded me of. (I now think it was Heidi, but that name didn’t come to me then. It should have.) I slipped on the jacket with my back to the mirror, turning around to assess my reflection. I stood there, shocked into silence. And then I began to laugh. Long and hard. The kind of laughter that can make your eyes water. Imagine if you will, spotting Jackie Onassis in a drill team uniform, or perhaps The Queen in a pair of skinny jeans. I looked that silly, in an article of clothing so unlike myself I seemed to be in costume.

So yes, I know how Edward feels, and once again, he shall not be participating in the Halloween festivities like some of his counterparts, no matter how cute I happen to think they are. He will however, be assisting me with my duties at the front door - handing out candy and homemade cupcakes, making everyone welcome - tasks much more suited to both his noble temperament and exalted station.
I applaud him for remaining true blue to his well-honed sense of self.

Painting above by Thierry Poncelet