Friday, October 31, 2008
Goblins and vampires, cowboys and Indians, belly dancers and superstars; You've seen them all, and it can only mean one thing. Halloween has descended on the collage!
Once again, intrepid reporters fan out across the campus to cover the CCC. No, not the College Code of Conduct. We're talking about the Campus Costume Contest!
Each year we interview and photograph the very best costumes for your reading pleasure. Simultaneously, fearless dress code inspectors brace for their busiest and most perplexing day of the year.
This year, yours truly and a photographer have teamed up with a three person dress code inspection team. We'll be taking interview and pictures while the dress code inspectors will be conducting inspections and answering tricky costume questions.
And as always, we're looking for the winners of the annual CCC awards: Most Original Costume, Cleverest Costume, Coolest Costume, and the coveted Stump the Inspectors award. Along the way, we'll also provide some do's and don'ts and some quick costume tips.
So, let's get started!
First up is Chelsea dressed fetchingly as a Belly Dancer. She's quite mesmerizing as she shakes her hips.
"How many veils are you down to?" someone asks. (Belly dancers traditionally start with seven veils and drop them one at a time.)
"Just two," she says with a shy smile.
Watching her dance has us in a trance, but not the inspection team. The inspectors insist on checking her compliance with the college dress code, and Chelsea is happy to cooperate.
Halloween is a special day for inspections. Many of the normal inspection rules are bent, forgotten, or just ignored. But no one seems to mind. Inspectors will ask girls to strip to show dress code compliance, even though -- like our belly dancer -- it's clear that they aren't breaking any rules. The inspector will also let girls keep clothing that they would normally confiscate. It's all in good fun and there aren't any penalties for failing an inspection on Halloween.
Moving on we find Vicky dressed up as a cowgirl, and she's got us ready to stampede to the nearest ranch.
When asked about her costume choice, Vicky said "I love horseback riding and the wild west, so a cowgirl was just a natural one for me."
The inspectors, however, aren't so impressed. They question Vicky on her chaps and her overly long shirt. They quote dress code violations for wearing a bottom with a dress (since her shirt is long enough to reach her pubic bone, it counts as a dress) and for layering.
Vicky isn't cowed in the least. She turns and explains, "I knew that was going to be a problem. By leaving my shirt unbuttoned it doesn't count as a top so I'm not breaking any rules.
"And if there's going to be any question about it, I can just take it off," she finishes.
The inspectors consult briefly with each other, and all agree; Vicky's outfit is perfectly acceptable. We just think it's perfect. Happy trails, Vicky!
Our next gal didn't come as prepared as Vicky did. Angela came dressed as an angel.
"Yea, I know it's trite but everyone says I'm an angel so why not dress up as one?" she states.
The inspectors are just shaking their heads. "Where do we even being?" they ask.
"First, the pants have to go" says the lead inspector. Angela takes them off. At least she wasn't wearing panties.
Angela tries to stretch her top down to cover herself.
"And the top," the inspector insists.
Angela gets the top down as far as her hips. "Can't I at least keep my top as a skirt?" she pleads. "Everyone will be staring at my naked pussy and bottom!"
The inspectors are unsympathetic. "Absolutely not. Blatant violations incur a full inspection."
Angela pouts but steps out of her top too.
"Can I at least keep my wings?" she asks. "There the only thing that makes me feel dressed up."
"Of course you can keep the wings," the inspectors agree. "It's Halloween!"
This makes Angela is a little happier. She tells herself that with her angel wings on, it still looks like she's dressed up for Halloween. This will distract people from just staring at her pretty pussy or ogling her pert boobies.
And we think she's on to something. Angela looks even more angelic in her (slightly) altered costume than she did before her inspection.
Angela could have taken a few tips from Reba, our next costumed beauty. Reba also went with the angel theme, but took it in a very different direction.
"I wanted to be dark, and kinky, and outrageous this year," Reba explains. "And I didn't want to tangle with any dress code inspectors."
While Reba poses for our photographer, the inspector whisper amongst themselves. I'm only guessing that they're trying to find some obscure violation or at least a reason to strip her. But after almost five minutes, they give up.
"Better luck next time," Reba laughs at the inspectors. "And I'll be back next year with an even better costume," she says to me as my photographer takes one parting shot
We all hope to see more of Reba without having to wait an entire year.
Our next contestant is a refreshing change. Fiona came dressed as a devil, but the simplicity of her costume is what's so much fun.
"I don't think Halloween costumes should be these elaborate affairs that take days to make," she says. "I made this one from a hoody, a rubber duck, and some felt. It took all of 20 minutes," she beams.
And we're beaming too! Fiona is the cutest little devil we've seen in a long time.
But the inspectors are looking to score some points. "Could you unzip your top?" they ask. "You could be wearing a bra," they add rather lamely.
Fiona cooperates, but makes it clear that the inspectors are being silly. Showing a little attitude towards the inspectors is one of the perks of Halloween.
"Happy?" she asks.
The inspectors leave empty handed, Fiona keeps her devil hoody, and we leave with lots of pictures. Hell isn't looking so bad, if Fiona's going to be there.
Fiona's costume reminds us that your Halloween costume doesn't have to be complicated. We drop in on Tracy over at the recreation center for some quick costume advice.
"I never plan ahead for Halloween," Tracy explains. "Heck, I never plan ahead period," she laughs.
"Here's an inexpensive costume that I purchased on the Internet just yesterday. You want to get something that's simple and won't make for a big dress code headache."
Tracy demonstrates by changing into her costume. "See, it only take a few moments," she says.
"All done!" she announces. "Now I'm ready to hit those Halloween parties in style."
"Just remember to stick to the dress code regardless of what you pick out," she adds while flipping her skirt up. "It won't be much of a Halloween if you lose your costume," she smiles.
Tracy's costume can be had for a few dollars, but even you if don't have that there are still costume opportunities. Take Patricia here.
Her costume isn't much more than a mesh dress with an iron-on logo.
We asked her "so what is your costume exactly?"
"I'm wearing ATTITUDE!" she sasses while posing for the camera.
We're not sure exactly what her attitude it is, but it's an attitude that everyone sure seem to enjoy looking at.
Heading North along the campus mall we find Rachel posing next to the Business School building.
"I'm a goddess," she says in a breathy voice. We have to agree. Tall and willowy, Rachel catches the attention of everyone passing by -- including the inspectors.
As you might guess, the inspectors are exercising their rights and requesting that Rachel disrobe. Rachel just arches her back and peels out of her costume.
"I knew they'd be doing this today," she confides. Rachel confidently shows that she's a goddess, with or without a costume.
Clearly no dress code violations here, but Rachel isn't putting her gown back on. That's OK. We're sure goddess Rachel will get more followers without her robes than with.
Heading back towards the quad we stumble across Trisha dressed as a goth. A very fetching goth, I might add.
"I'm normally rather shy, but last summer some of my friends talked me into getting my nipples pierced. I haven't had the nerve to show them off until now. Halloween is the perfect day to lose some inhibitions!" she bubbles.
But I'm afraid that that inspectors have some bad news for Trish. They furrow their brows and go up to talk with her.
"What is it?" asks Trish. "Is there some rule about showing my nipple rings, 'cause I see girls do it all the time! Or is it my skirt? Is my skirt too long?"
"None of those," the inspectors reply. "Your corset is too long. It constitutes a dress and can't be worn with a skirt."
"This skirt?" Trish asks.
"That's the one," the inspector confirms. "You'll have to take it off."
Trish takes off her pretty skirt, but clearly isn't happy with the inspectors. We asked her what she thought of inspections, and our photographer caught the answer.
"Can I keep the corset at least?" she pleads.
"Of course," the inspectors agree in unison. No wants want to deprive Trisha of her Halloween costume, after all.
As Trish walks away she says "Well, I guess I'm going to have to lose more inhibitions than I'd planned!"
I think I speak for everyone, when I say that Trish's loss is our gain!
A Halloween season wouldn't be complete without at least one "un-costume." Over at the Fine Arts college we notice Heather. Which isn't hard to do, as Heather is a very noticeable girl.
"And what are you dressed as, or should I say not dressed as, this year?" I ask her.
"I'm a life drawing model, of course," she beams.
"A model? Would you like to pose for us?" I suggest. And with that she keeps our photographer occupied for some time.
Our posse of inspectors are bored, of course. There's no rule against being naked if you want to. And without any clothes at all there's nothing to inspect. Heather can walk about with complete immunity. And we hope she does -- walk around a lot, that is.
If the inspectors were bored watching Heather (and only an inspector could be bored watching Heather), they had their hands full with Melanie. Over at the haunted house, Melanie is dressed up as a witch.
"I always wanted to come as a witch," she said. "This was my sister's costume, and everyone always loved it. This is the first year I've had a chance to wear it."
Melanie's big sister apparently didn't go to this college, because her costume is a mine field of dress code violations.
First, the panties had to go.
"Is it OK now?" Melanie asks innocently.
Everyone thought it was more than OK, but the inspectors had only gotten started.
"Since your cape constitutes a dress, your bustier is underwear. You'll have to take that off too," the inspector demanded.
Sighing, Melanie dutifully relieved herself of her corset and stands, rather stunningly, in just her cape.
"Satisfied now?" she asks. "Satisfied" is not quite the word we would have chosen to describe her stunning transformation. "Stupefied" would have been a better choice.
The inspectors conclude that her cape, all by itself, it an acceptable Halloween costume.
As we leave, Melanie asks "Could I at least have a broom?"
Everyone bursts into laughter, including Melanie.
Now we get to the really exciting part of the day: The award winners. I think you'll agree that we saved the best for last.
Over at the Applied Engineering college we found Terra, this year's winner of the Most Original Costume award.
Terra fashioned her own Space Girl outfit, and the results are out of this world.
"I just got started and didn't know when to stop," she said. "The outfit was just the beginning. It's a whole environment," she explains while pointing out the space age backdrop and props.
We're sure Terra is sending our readers into orbit.
Even though Terra's outfit was clearly thought out to avoid any dress code problems, the inspectors have to do their due diligence; Especially for an award winning costume.
A quick check under Terra's skirt and the inspectors give her their seal of approval.
Everyone else just hopes that Terra comes visit our planet more often! Congratulations, Terra.
We have to leave Terra when we hear a commotion breaking out in the parking lot. Rushing to the scene we find a sports car surrounded by a large crowd. Everywhere, cameras are taking picture after picture. What's going on?
Once we get close enough we discover the center of attention is Elsa, a recent transfer student. But what is Elsa dressed as?
Elsa snags this year's prize for Cleverest Costume. Still can't guess? Elsa came dressed as everyone's favorite You-Know-Who celebrity!
"I'm just getting used to the dress code here, but I've learned a lot" Elsa said when interviewed. "One day it struck me that going without panties isn't just because of campus rules. Lots of girls are leaving their panties in their drawer for all kinds of reasons. I think it's great, but you have to know how to do it."
We think Elsa is doing a great job right now.
"No, silly," she scolds. "You have to know how to go pantyless under a short skirt or dress. It takes practice to stay decent. I guess some top-drawer celebrities could have avoided a few embarrassing situations if they'd attended college here," Elsa concluded confidently.
We're confident that Elsa is right on the mark and the inspectors agree. We leave her to tease the crowd of paparazzi's, while we move on to cover the two biggest prizes of the day.
Finding this year's Coolest Costume award was no easy feat. We finally catch up with her in the basement of the drama department where a team -- yes, a team -- of makeup artists have been at work. And the results are breathtaking.
Kristine's Gold Girl is this year's Coolest Costume award winner.
It's almost hard to call a paint job a costume, and we all know that a lot of what makes this costume so stunning is Kris herself. But the overall effect is eerie, especially when Kris stands perfectly still.
We kind of thought that Kris might also have a shot at the Stump the Inspectors award, but the inspectors quickly dismissed that idea.
"Body paint is well documented in the College Dress Code," they explained. "She's in full compliance with the dress code and there's no mystery as to why."
The only mystery we want to discover is how long we can keep looking at her.
Sadly, we can't stay with Kristine forever. It's time to track down the Stump the Inspector award winner. This year that honor goes to Ashley.
When we arrive, Ashley is sitting confidently waiting for the inspectors. This is a tough prize to win and some years it goes unawarded. No one says a word. The tension in the air is thick.
Once the inspectors have all arrived, Ashley starts carving her pumpkin. She's practically naked, so the inspectors can't do a thing at this point, which is clearly part of Ashley's plan.
Ashley finishes craving and asks if the inspectors are ready? The inspectors are perplexed, which is (of course) the essence of the Stump the Inspectors award.
Everyone's still wondering, "what is Ashley going to wear?" And then the answer becomes obvious. Pumpkin! Ashley's wearing pumpkin!
Everyone applauds. The inspectors are speechless with laughter. There's no dress code that covers vegetables! Ashley has snagged the most coveted of all of the Halloween costume prizes. She's as pleased as her grinning pumpkin; Everyone else is grinning too.
Well that brings us to the end. Or, more precisely, Ashley's end.
You'll have to wait another year for the next exciting Campus Costume Contest. But remember, it's only a year away. So start working on those costumes, girls!