That advice, banal as it may be, is worth following 364 days of the year. But not today. Not on All Hallows' Eve. Put on (or take off) whatever you want, to be whoever (or whatever) you want to be. The possibilities are endless. Well, almost.
At the risk of upsetting the sensibilities of anyone in today's easily offended climate, I'd like to count down a half dozen costumes that need to be deep-sixed. Let's make like thin ice supporting a polar bear and get cracking.
6. THE "HI, I'M XXX" STICKER
This may have been clever the first time it was implemented (was that by Jim Halpert on The Office?), but no longer. It's lazy.
5. THE GHOST
Avoid the white bed sheet with two eyeholes, which is as basic as basic gets. It's the costume equivalent of a college course called Introduction to Introductions. I'd love to see a ghost — just not this ghost.
4. THE REAL DEAL
Don't dress as you do in real life. If you're a surgeon, don't wear scrubs to the Halloween party. If you're a member of the Queen's Guard, forgo the red tunic and bearskin hat. If you're Aaron Judge, don't wear a Yankees uniform. You get the idea.
Don't paint "SOY BOMB" on your chest and attempt strange, robotic gyrations while the music plays. Don't walk around holding a bottle with "TIGER BLOOD" scribbled across a strip of masking tape. Don't wear a tux and pair it with a paper bag on your head that reads "I AM NOT FAMOUS ANYMORE."
2. THE YELLOW SHIRT
If you wear a yellow shirt, you're wearing ... a yellow shirt. It's not a costume. Don't claim to be a lemon. This same principle applies to purple shirts and grapes, green shirts and limes, and so on.
1. THE MISSPELLING
Pay no attention to the dog with the leafy hat and natty bow tie. Zero in on the penultimate line. That's where an error made like a ghost and manifested. T comes right before U in the alphabet — and in the word glaringly misspelled here.
Too bad, on this day of dress-up, the writer couldn't mask his costumes.