The costume was a success! It was probably the most uncomfortable costume I have ever designed for myself and the noisiest too, but it was the most fun to wear. Despite the obnoxious crinkling noise it made at my every move, it withstood the windy and rainy weather, the occasional passer-by almost ripping it in order to maneuver around me, and of course the ridiculous questions: “Uhh like what are you? A paper bag?” or “Haha did you like lose your job? Are you a bag lady?” What’s a true Paper Bag Princess without an answer for everything? Me: “Uhh no. I’m the Paper Bag Princess. There’s a difference. And by the way, bag ladies don’t wear paper bags. They’re not durable and could rip at anytime.” Where’s the fun in dressing up without the funny questions? It also sparked a discussion about The Paper Bag Princess as a book, as a classic and of course as a character. I suppose I brought back a piece of their childhood. One very
sober guest shouted belligerently across the room: “Back in those days, they didn’t have paper so that story isn’t believable.” I giggled of course because it’s rude not to laugh at dumb jokes. What a silly, silly realist. I guess the punch he was drinking turned him into a smarty pants. So I shouted back at the ______ (not sure what he was dressed up as) and said “Most stories are not about turning make-believe into the believable, otherwise they wouldn’t be stories we cherish. Secondly it’s a story with an important lesson to be learned, so it doesn’t rely on whether dragons and all of that other make-believe stuff actually exists because it’s written on paper and it exists in our minds.” He stood there with his mustache hanging off his face and rolled his eyes. Where’s a dragon when you need one?
“I believe in everything until it’s disproved. So I believe in fairies, the myths, dragons. It all exists, even if it’s in your mind. Who’s to say that dreams and nightmares aren’t as real as the here and now?” –John Lennon
Halloween is just around the corner and what better time to dress provocatively- kidding. This year I’ve decided to scrap the high-heeled boots, fishnets and any garment of clothing that serves only one purpose- to reveal as much skin as possible (kidding again). The film Mean Girls said it best: “In the regular world, Halloween is when children dress up in costumes and beg for candy. In Girl World, Halloween is the one night a year when a girl can dress like a total slut and no other girls can say anything about it.” Although I may have been this type of girl on Halloween once upon a time, this year I’ve opted for more of a dad friendly costume. So this year there will be no Sexy Ghost, Sexy Witch, Sexy Pilot, Sexy Sailor, or Sexy Bat Girl- notice how a woman’s costume isn’t a costume unless it’s got ‘sexy’ in front of it? This year I’m going to be none other than Robert Munsch’s Paper Bag Princess. No this costume isn’t sexy, although when I searched how to make my costume I found some pretty sexed up Paper Bag Princesses. Come on now. Must we do this to even the most admirable characters we read about in books? I’m pretty sure that’s not the look Robert Munsch was going for. The original Paper Bag Princess is dirty, disheveled, and is wearing A PAPER BAG. It wasn’t a paper bag designed by some of the world’s top designers. Yeah, and it wasn’t a Gucci paper bag either. It was a simple paper bag kind of like the one you carry your lunch in, but a teenie weenie bit bigger.
The Paper Bag Princess is one of my favorite stories written by one of my favorite childhood authors. What better time to bring the characters you love to life than through the spirit of Halloween? Unlike most stories where the prince rescues his princess, this princess has got pizazz and wit and uses it to rescue her prince from a dragon, despite the danger involved in doing so. She’s virtuous, smart, imperfect and moral. Most of all she’s a hero. After she rescues the prince he’s unappreciative and judges her based on her appearance. Prince in shining armor? Not so much- more like the prince in rusty armor. What does she do next? She dumps him. Atta girl. She’s the kind of gal I like to read about in stories because she’s not like the others. She’s not the traditional damsel in distress waiting for her prince’s arrival. She’s not down with the “woe is me” or up in a freakin’ tower or missing a slipper. Now if only I had a prince to rescue, if only. Ah well, maybe one day or maybe on Halloween tehehe.