I am often called morbid in response to my interest in death. I find this extremely backward. The definition of ‘morbid’, aside from the physical definition of illness and disease, is an uncharacteristic propensity for gloomy thoughts. I ask questions about death, loss, etc. because we as a society don’t know how to talk about it without deflecting or hiding behind something else. There are things people do concerning death in this society that I consider extremely morbid and probably contribute to us not having the capacity to deal with death in an entirely healthful way. Open-casket funerals come to mind. If you think about it for a moment, that shit is extremely traumatizing. I hate this practice. It feels wrong to gaze upon the body of your loved one in a too-expensive coffin, face made-up into a stranger, with that god-awful organ music in the background. It feels intrusive to me. This context is different than the medical study of bodies; forensics, etc. because there is something to be learned there. There is nothing to be learned from the open gazing upon a dead body in the funeral context. Just my opinion. I also don’t like the feeling of walking over other dead people’s graves to get to the nylon green tent set up over a gaping hole in the ground for the burial you are attending. There is something just unsettling about that.
This society is also morbid when it comes to profane, or everyday dealing with death. We speak in hushed tones, refer to the dead as “passed on”, refer to the body as “remains”, speak of a “better place”, etc. The news shields us from our own dead bodies from the war, 9/11, everyday accidents, etc. In it’s place, we glamourize death via movies and TV shows, trivialize it through video games and speech, we say this team “killed” the other team, we’re “dying” of hunger.
For Halloween, we hang nameless, anonymous skulls and skeletons around, we buy fake blood for spattering, we make food creations resembling eyes, brains, guts, human limbs, maggots, etc. We volunteer to inject panicky fear into ourselves by visiting dark, “haunted” houses. This is morbid. It’s fucked up.
Don’t get me wrong, I like the fun of Halloween. But to me, Halloween can be fun without the aformentioned paragraph. I like costumes, dressing up, being spooky, etc. But spooky and morbid are two different things. I love scary movies, but this is not a Halloween-specific occurrence. Why don’t we celebrate meaningful death, like Mexico’s Dia de los Muertos or Japan’s OBon? Here, death is remembered on a mass scale, but it is also meaningful because people are remembering who they actually lost. To just string up skeletons for decorative purposes with no meaning, is so devoid of any compassion and an example of how vacuous people can be.
Speaking of Halloween costumes, I hate when people use this day as an excuse to let their racist flag fly or be a gussied-up whore. Dressing up as a gypsy, an “Oriental”, an “Arabic princess/genie”, a MEXICAN (seriously, these ladies were trying on ponchos and sombreros in a Halloween store) is not a costume. You’re just letting your secret racial ignorance be made public for a night. Don’t get me started on the blackface costumes, nope not even going there. Now, I understand kids dressing up as gypsies/fortune tellers but parents should be a little more responsible in their children’s costumes. For adults, there’s no excuse. As for the whore costumes, there is a distinction. If it’s an actual COSTUME, I have no beef with it. So I definitely understand the sexy nurse, police officer, fairy, princess, witch, she-devil, black cat, etc. I get it. What I don’t vote for, are the blatantly made-up shits. Such as a costume I saw called the “Honey Bee”. What the fuck is a honey bee costume if it’s not an actual bee costume? Some antennae, and a couple of pieces of torn yellow fabric? -_- Just say no.
As for me and Crabby? Tonight we’re going to be ain’t shit at a party as a priest and pregnant nun. BAWSE. Pictures forthcoming.
I leave you with my last Halloween costume, from 2003 when I worked at a bookstore. I was a pimp, and my drag-queen co-worker Justin, was my ho. Yes, I had a purple fur (faux) coat. Yes, I had a cane. Yes, I had a “grill”. Yes, my ho is puttin’ that money in my hand. Yes, I know we were terrible, terrible people. We lived near each other at the time and worked 6am-2pm because we were on the inventory team. So I picked him up at 5am. Let that image marinate in your brains. The security guard at Justin’s apartments was like and it was hilarious to see customers unaware that Justin was a ‘he’. Oh, and I had THEE STANKEST pimp voice ever all day. Good times, good times.