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Halloween is nearly upon us, which means the streets will be flooded with paltry imitations of Hillary, Trump, Mad Max characters, and Left Shark. Do yourself a favor, avoid the mainstream costume bamboozle, and choose one of our hyper-local costume ideas. Just remember: The ones you have to explain to everyone, like, five times and yet still no one “gets” are always the coolest.
Costume: The H Street–Benning Road NE Streetcar
How to Pull It Off: Wear your normal clothes, and when someone asks you where your costume is, promise them you’ll have it by the end of the year.
Costume: The Other Baby Panda
How to Pull It Off: Render yourself nude and hairless. Show up late to a party at which you weren’t expected, then leave quietly before anyone catches your name.
Costume: Activist Snow Sledder
How to Pull It Off: Make a bunch of statehood signs and surround yourself with trepidatious children pulling snow sleds. Only go to journalists’ parties the entire night.
Costume: The Line at Rose’s Luxury
How to Pull It Off: With 50 of your closest friends, stand in an orderly line the whole night. Act like this behavior is completely normal.
How to Pull It Off: Lay on the ground. Have ten people crowd around you, trying to figure out how to get you to stand up and function normally, then have another 20 stand around yelling loudly about how they’re doing it wrong. Show up late to every party and cause the same scene over and over again.
Costume: José Andrés and Donald Trump (couple’s costume)
How to Pull It Off: Wear chef’s whites (Andrés) and have your date wear a live, orange cat on his head (Trump). Take turns throwing the same suit back and forth all night.
Costume: Muriel Bowser and RFK Stadium
How to Pull It Off: To be the stadium, wear your most decrepit rags, lay on the floor, and grip Bowser’s ankle tightly. To be the mayor, drag the stadium around behind you all night, trying to trade him/her to someone (anyone) for something (anything) more useful. Alternative: Bowser and Stadium meet a racist and bring that racist to a party. Everyone gets booed and kicked out.
Costume: The Washington Post Solo-ish Column
How to Pull It Off: Tell everyone you meet about your relationship status, which is so complicated it can’t really be summed up in fewer than 500 words. No one knows whether they want to go home with you or never see you again. End the night crying in a porta-potty, but wake up the next morning and get paid to write about what happened.
Photos of streetcar, Rose’s Luxury line, Metro, and RFK Stadium by Darrow Montgomery; photo of pandas courtesy of the National Zoo; additional photos by Will Sommer (sledders), Jessica Sidman (José Andrés), and Aaron Wiener (Donald Trump)