What does your Halloween costume tell a potential employer?

9 Aug
Bed sheet ghost costumes

What, the Elvis costumes were all sold out?

What the heck am I doing writing about Halloween costumes in August?

Blame Andrea Merson, my former colleague at Copeland. She and I got stuck into this topic today and I haven’t been able to drop it.

Andrea suggests that her approach to making a Halloween costume mirrors her approach to life. She takes on a daunting task, then finds herself alone at 3 am in the morning, still working on it but growing in confidence that she can deliver. Her ideas are very ambitious and frankly, quite whacky. But she always pulls it off.

Love it.

What does your choice of Halloween costume say about you? Do you just rush off to Walmart and buy a Superman suit off the rack? That mixes procrastination with low standards and zero imagination: you probably eat Pop-tarts for breakfast, cut and paste your work proposals and think Charlie Sheen is hilarious.

Superman costume

Well at least he isn’t wearing his WINNING T-shirt

Do you see something more ambitious and make a bee-line to Value Village to peruse the clothing racks and make-up aisles? Better. You want to make an impression. You map out goals and strategies to achieve them. You also probably grind your own espresso beans and write thank you notes longhand.

Or do you go deeper, committing yourself to a vision and sacrificing your personal time and your body to deliver? These are the people, like Andrea, who walk around with parasitic twins coming out of their heads and refrigerators on their backs. They go big. People never forget seeing a 6-foot Phillips head screwdriver arrive at their party. This is the sort of person who changes the company they work for. Or ends up in hospital!

Heidi Klum Kali costume

Heidi Klum as Kali. Wow.

I think it would be a very revealing job interview question. I know what sort of person I would hire. Wait, I did.

Not sure what it says about me that I just want to freak the shit out of people.

Cross-dressing Halloween costumer

Your blog writer dressed as a man dressed as a woman. With duct tape.


8 Responses to “What does your Halloween costume tell a potential employer?”

  1. Amy August 12, 2012 at 12:20 pm #

    Your costume says that you take the spirit of the holiday seriously. I mean, that’s what it’s really all about isn’t it? Freaking the shit out of people? Method and execution come second to the final outcome.
    My favorite costumes are the ones that don’t look like “costumes” per se, but are just me in a different state. One year I was a traffic accident victim: ripped t-shirt with a tire track across the front, some blood, pale make-up. Then last year I just had a bloody, bandaged bite mark on my arm and gradually lost motor function as the day went along. I go for subtle and realistic and I fully commit.
    All this is kinda ironic, however, considering that I just quit my job. 🙂

  2. Doug Brown August 12, 2012 at 12:27 pm #

    You’re hired!

    You hit on a good point here Amy and that’s COMMITMENT. So glad to hear you gradually lost motor function over the course of the day. That’s commitment. No one has every accused me of being anything less than 100% in character. The costumes are freaky sure, but it’s the way I lurk in dark hallways and lurch towards people that they most recall. 🙂

  3. Carol August 12, 2012 at 8:29 pm #

    I remember the year I went as Mrs. Bobbit. Wore a nice housedress and an apron and carried a silver platter with a beef tongue on it. (That image will probably ensure that you never repent of your vegetarian ways.) Anyway, I can’t speak to the job factor, but I can tell you the costume was very unsuccessful at picking up men.

    • Doug Brown August 12, 2012 at 8:37 pm #

      Carol, let me get this straight: you went to a Halloween party as Lorena Bobbit, with a beef tongue (we’ll talk about how you acquired that later) on a platter, and you DIDN’T get picked up? That’s craziness. I can’t understand that at all.

      Nor can I understand why the ladies don’t find me hot creeping about in my translucent corpse costume. It’s all I can do to not give myself my phone number!


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