FRIDAY OPEN THREAD: I Am Milking Every G.D. Second of Halloween

Welcome to the Friday Open Thread, where we process our weekly feelings together in the comments until they come out as rainbow apple cider and/or conversations between the coolest internet wierdos ever. This Friday is a special Friday, of course, BECAUSE IT IS HALLOWEEN OH GOD SO EXCITING HALLOWEEN HALLOWEEN HALLOWEEN.

Did you know when you type Halloween that many times in a row it starts to look like a non-word? Halloween is basically my Christmas. I mean, don’t get me wrong, I like Christmas too. But Halloween is my favorite. And for three years running, I have moved on October 31st. So for three entire years I have not been able to partake in what is essentially the best damn holiday in the history of all holidays. Until this year. This year, I moved in August. And I won’t move again for another three years, so that means the next three Halloweens are intact. Starting with this one. Now, when I first asked to do this Open Thread, I asked to do it as “it’s Halloween and I still don’t have my shit together,” because I figured I know myself pretty well and that sounded like a true possibility. Turns out I didn’t know myself well enough, because after being deprived of Halloween for three years, I WAS SO READY SO FAST OH GOD HALLOWEEN. I ordered my costume a month in advance and still paid expedited shipping, that’s how ready I was. I’ve also been watching Nightmare Before Christmas on repeat since October 1st, just FYI.

So instead, I am here to tell you how I ran errands in my costume yesterday, because like a small child I could not wait until today to put the costume on. The Illustrious Stef Schwartz came over and took pictures of me doing this. Just for you.


First I wanted to go get Halloween Candy because all the children in my building are having a Haunted Lobby Party and I want them to get all hopped up on sugar while I get nostalgic for the good ole days. But then I went to Morton Williams and was v. v. disappointed in their selection.



So then we decided to go to Duane Reade to get candy, but on the way to the Duane Reade there lies my favorite book store (Book Culture, in case you are curious). So clearly I had to stop in and look for this book that I’d read about and wanted to purchase and read and love forever. At first I couldn’t find it and it was shaping up to be a v. disappointing morning, but then they came through for me.


The two things I love most in the world are books and Halloween, so I was into it. I told the cashier that this was the best because I was dressed as a unicorn. Stef said that I reminded her of a three year old running around telling everyone I was a princess.

We finally found the acceptable Halloween candy at the Duane Reade and everything was fabulous, except for the Duane Reade employee who asked if he could pull my tail, to which I replied “No thank you” like a v. polite unicorn.


And then we walked by Tom’s Restaurant and Stef said, “I need to take a picture of you walking by Tom’s dressed as a unicorn. Just do this for me.”


None of these photos were taken on October 31st. They were all taken on October 30th. And when Halloween is over, y’all are gonna hafta pry me out of this unicorn costume like one pries a clam out of a shell (I assume one pries clams out of shells, IDK, I’m allergic to clams and also a vegetarian).

I also want you to know that I come by this insane love for Halloween honestly, so here are two photos of what my parents did this year for Halloween. I gave my car to them when I moved to the city, so it looks like they found a use for it.



I super love my parents.

So what about you? What are you doing for Halloween this year? PLEASE SHOW ME PHOTOS OF YOUR COSTUMES OH GOD OH GOD PLEASE. Also what other thoughts and feelings have you felt and had this week? I’m totally cool chatting to y’all about non-Halloween things also, I just like chatting to y’all because y’all are wonderful people.

How To Post A Photo In The Comments:

1. Find a photo!This is the easy part. Find a photo on the web, right click (on a Mac, control+click), hit “Copy Image URL” and then…

2. Code it in to your comment! Use the following code, and use a DIRECT LINK to the image. Your image link should end in .JPG or .GIF or .PNG or .CallMeWhateverYouWant even. I don’t care, but it should be an image suffix!

<img src=”http://imageurlgoeshere.jpg”>

If you need to upload the photo you love from your computer, try using imgur. To learn more, check out Ali’s step-by-step guide.

How To Post A Video In The Comments, Too:

1. Find a video on YouTube or Vimeo or WHATEVER and click “embed.” Copy that code, but first make sure it’s for 640px wide or less. If your player is too large, it will not display properly.

2. Copy the code and paste it directly into your comment.

3. Go forth and jam.

If you want more comment snazziness, I wrote a two-part tutorial a while back on HTML you can use in comments.

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A.E. Osworth

A.E. Osworth is part-time Faculty at The New School, where they teach undergraduates the art of digital storytelling. Their novel, We Are Watching Eliza Bright, about a game developer dealing with harassment (and narrated collectively by a fictional subreddit), is forthcoming from Grand Central Publishing (April 2021) and is available for pre-order now. They have an eight-year freelancing career and you can find their work on Autostraddle (where they used to be the Geekery Editor), Guernica, Quartz, Electric Lit, Paper Darts, Mashable, and drDoctor, among others.

A.E. has written 542 articles for us.


  1. Halloween is also my favorite date on the calendar. The other 364 days between November 1st and October 30th are filled with boredom and unexcitedness.

    My life is only relevant on October 31st. Such is the destiny of professionnal face painters. The rest of the time I’m the weird costumed girl. Today I’m normal-looking, and I pull that kind of normal better than most.

    Deal with it.

     photo Profile1_zpsa52fc8a3.jpg

  2. Thoughts and feelings: Today I am feeling sad because I just finished reading the entire “effing dykes” blog and it has been on hiatus since 2013. Krista, if you are reading this WRITE MORE PLEASE.

    I am not cool and do not have a costume. I don’t have an excuse other than being lazy and busy. It is very rainy and autumnal and I will probably go on a wet rain hike with lots of goretex and sweaters today, since it’s one of my off days from work.

    • You are cool, with or without a costume. And you are especially cool if you are going on an autumnal hike. I am super jealous here in NYC, where I will not be going on an autumnal hike any time soon.

      Also I am feeling this way about Nimona, which just wrapped up. I just want it to keep going, even though it was never meant to.

      • Ditto to that about Nimona. However, i luckily came upon it as it was over. So I got to read the whole thing in one fell swoop. Thank you to the girl on Tinder, who recommended it after seeing my picture of reading lumber janes!

      • Thanks!

        The hike was wet and filled with yellow and orange. I walked around a cove on an inlet of the puget sound. Very serene.

  3. Don’t know if this will work…probably not, because I suck at understanding/following directions, but here’s a shot of my costume – Gotham’s interpretation of Catwoman, aka “what Nina wears on a daily basis + goggles and leather gloves”.


    WHOA!! UNICORN COSTUME!! BEST EVER! Double thumbs up! I like how you guys documented the whole thing. Now I want to buy candy in a unicorn costume/onesie (?) LOL. Is it bad to say that I was really really looking forward to this Open Thread? I noticed 3 weeks ago that Halloween was a Friday, today and immediately thought, AS IS GOING TO DO A FRIDAY OPEN THREAD FOR HALLOWEEN!! I bought my pumpkins to carve the second they were unloading them from the truck at the store. I usually carve two, one for me and one for my nieces. I’m working today but who cares, FREE CANDY!!!

    This is the one I carved for my nieces. “Hi I’m Olaf and I like warm hugs!”

    This one is mine, DAPPERCAT

    I also want to mention that my computer was healed/fixed the other day and I’m so happy it was only the switch and not the motherboard.

    My baby grand piano metal earth thingy!

    Also, my co-workers and I do mud runs when we have the time. It’s basically a 5k/3.1miles of running with obstacles. Here’s me going through one of the final mud pits. Also happy to report the run took me about 35/45mins to do. Very very stoked. Next up is our electric run!!


      I’m on my way to a Pumpkin Carving Party. I am going to have to channel you. I just printed off some options for templates, all of which are Nightmare Before Christmas related.

        • She’d be rich. So rich. She’d only have to work 1 month a year! Making Halloween printable PDFs.

          Vinzzz, we just made you a rich woman.

    • Lol!!! Well thank you guys for all your kind words!! Its heart warming.

      The templates are a little easier wto do if you learn how to make a shaded pumpkin. You worry less about carving out the wrong part of the pumpkin too. And its easier because you shade and its done. The inside is a lot cleaner too!

      Yes @alioh channel me in spirit!

    • Oooooh, another sweet metal piece!!! Amazing!

      I had an amazing costume when I was a kid. My best girl …friend …in grade school went as Mickey and Minnie Mouse. Our moms made us paper mâché mouse heads!! Our heads were inside! Yikes!! :)

      • yeah, awesome pumpkin carving! i couldn’t even begin to do a smiley face on a pumpkin. and kudos to the mud run!

    • I’m both amazed and confused by this running through mud business, that’s a great time.

      That piano is beautiful. I mean your metal earth pieces are always great, but I love this one even more.

  5. My missus wouldn’t let me buy her that unicorn onesie…and today the whole situation shot her in the foot when I skipped into my Dinosaur one and she wanted a costume and had none! Congrats on going for it. The wings are frickin adorable. Due to various flu-ness we’re skipping the annual monster party this year and going for movie night.
    So far this evening we have watched Hocus Pocus and I am now putting on The great pumpkin. Saving the scary stuff for later. No trick or treaters yet,its only 5:30, and I’m a tad concerned the Maom may not last much longer.
    Happy Halloween folks.
    P.S. I have genuinely attempted to find an image url for my instagram of my dino but failed. It had no .imagefile must sort out imgur. Apologies.

  6. My girlfriend and I are going as the girls from Frozen (the theme is things you hate and we had a lot of dirndl skirts in the wardrobe, don’t worry, am in Austria). I forgot the girls were sisters and have just realised that PDA this evening will be weird and wrong.

  7. Apparently, as old as all my coworkers are is not old enough to guess a Beatles costume without some props, so I fixed this photo up a bit

  8. First of you look effin adorable in that costume. Second, I think we all want to ask if we can give you a consensual hug.

    Well tonight I was gonna go to the West Hollywood event, but news said something like 80% chance of rain tonight, plus NBA season started and my fan-hood doesn’t stop me from watching my team loose so there is that.
    However, Sunday morning I meet up a fellow straddler for a spirited drive through Malibu. Then later I’m going to a pumpkin baking event at this super adorable and super queer friends house, I plan to brink pumpkin cider or ale. My brand of beer is Sam Adams, but for this one, I will bring a 12 pack from the top 5 portion of this weeks AS beer list. That is if I can find any of them, as some of them are not sold in the Western US :-(. Plus next Saturday I am hosting the costumed 80’s roller skate party down on Orange County and that should be a real hoot.

    I had always heard that making friends is harder once you graduate college, but it’s also harder when you are living a lie. But, thanks to Autostraddle I have meet some amazing queers and living less closeted and more my trueself.

    • You know what, yes, you can give me a consensual virtual hug. And I am so glad you asked, because last night I was at a party and people kept reaching over and GRABBING MY HEAD. I do not know why, nor do I know how they thought it was appropriate to GRAB A STRANGER’S HEAD WITHOUT ASKING??? Can someone please explain to me, though, what about this unicorn costume screams “grab my head, please and thanks?”

      • I know! I’ve had that happen at work. I had a heavier set customer, who is a regular, once poked me hard in the stomach like I am Pilsbury Doughboy. I was not amused, and if I could I would have loudly said, “please don’t touch me.” But, one can’t do that to regular costumer. I may get a pin that says something like please don’t touch me without my consent. Or angry genderqueer walking.

    • We should all give consensual virtual hugs and not poke each other in the stomach but its already wrong as it is without asking.

  9. I am all halloweened out already. My staff party was last weekend and I seemed to have gotten my fix. More than one night of dressing up makes me want to take a nap just thinking about it. Tonight I will just live vicariously through my girlfriend who is a babely Edward Scissorhands.

    Here is my costume

  10. I am all halloweened out already. My staff party was last weekend and I seemed to have gotten my fix. More than one night of dressing up makes me want to take a nap just thinking about it. Tonight I will just live vicariously through my girlfriend who is a babely Edward Scissorhands.

    Here is my costume

    • This is so neat! I really like how tree branches work for the horns, I hadn’t thought of it.

      I was supposed to be a dark satyr kinda thing myself, but my hoof boots came in the mail only yesterday so I have no time to learn to walk in them.

      Plus I’ll be drinking so I want to avoid breaking a leg while drunk robot dancing.

    • god I am the worst at guessing what people are, I was like “deer-bjork?” you look very cool.

  11. I’m eating candy and watching Charlie Brown and the Great Pumpkin multiple times. Such is the joy of teaching at an elementary school on Halloween. Bonus points for getting to be in jeans since the kids had free dress (they usually have to wear uniforms).

    Last Friday we had a huge Halloween carnival, which is always one of the most adorable things ever.

  12. i wore leggings as pants today so i could tell people i was being a basic bitch, but i also might throw on a denim jacket and shades later to be bruno mars.

    ali your costume. i love you.

  13. I’m hosting a Halloween party tonight for my entire cohort + my roommate’s friends + friends of friends. Should be a gay ol’ time. My girlfriend and I are going as Calvin and Hobbes. I’m pretending this Tigger costume is Hobbes.

  14. I’m going to watch Gremlins and eat lots of candy!!! My week has been super busy and I am excited to relax and have fun

  15. Ali you 100% rock in that costume. 100%.

    I’m staying in tonight (friends playing a gig where they improvise over Nosperatu in a church – sounds a bit chilly to me) but tomorrow I’m going to a Samhain feast…

    We’ve made up a ritual to do to honour our ancestors, and I’m taking my grandma’s grandma, Granny Price, as my plus one. I’ve even made her some special buns!

    I wrote about it here:

  16. I love DIY costumes on Halloween. I was Two-Face yesterday for a work party!

    I’m going for grumpy cat tonight, and a zombie for a themed party tomorrow night! :D

    Happy Halloween everyone!

  17. Today I dressed up in fishnets and lipstick and completely failed to find time to be alone with the girl who’d made me want to dress up in fishnets and lipstick in the first place. But she made a point of telling me she’d have her house to herself for a while and then invited me over so that’s a good thing right? And what the hell. I’m gonna go take my brother and his friends trick-or-treating, and eat copious amounts of candy, and learn how to run in heels. It’ll be great. A picture of my pinup girl costume, for your enjoyment: (ps if you stick around I’ll post a better one once I get home)

  18. I am the laziest goddamn person ever when it comes to halloween. I took a tip from AS and am going as Alice Bee Toklas, ie my own frumpy femme self with some bug antennae, and I made a cute button necklace (“tender buttons”) But we are having autumnal themed dinner (gourds!)and hocus pocus drinking games and giving tiny children candy. My friend is trying to convince me to go out gay dancing after the party, but it is raining buckets in Seattle and she is trying to hook up, and I am not so she can go all by her Dr Suessy self. Tomorrow I am helping my precious friends Uhaul, I introduced them a year and change ago and I’m so pleased. If any AS-cuties want to make their own button necklace, this is the tutorial:

  19. I don’t have a climate-appropriate costume for my current location, so I’m probably just gonna go to a bar and drink beer tonight. I move into my new place tomorrow though, so that should be exciting.
    In Colorado (where I grew up) it was pretty standard to design Halloween costumes that could, if needed, fit over a winter coat/suit. In Seattle (where I live now) it just rains. All the time. Not sure how to make a costume that works with that.
    But at least there’s good beer here. :)

    • Maybe be Mary Poppins? With the umbrella?

      Also congrats on your new place, that’s so exciting!

    • When I was a kid (in seattle) we’d put rain coats under our costumes when needbe. Not the most comfortable, but highly functional. When we got home from trick or treating costumes went straight into the wash and we ate candy in pajamas. It was great!

  20. I love love love Halloween but I ended up in another state doing temp election work with no costume-making time and no festivities to go to which is okay so i made this since i really wanted to be Peter Pan

  21. All those pictures of you walking around the neighborhood I grew up in dressed as a unicorn are making me homesick! But in a happy way! Tom’s Restaurant lentil soup is the best in the world.

  22. this post made me smile!
    im not doing anything for halloween but my mom’s a teacher and for some reason the kids can’t dress up for halloween, but my mom found a way around it and had them dress up as their favorite book characters, and she took pictures and everyone seemed really happy :)
    ive had actually the worst week ive had in a long time and i dont really know what to do with myself. i started a job after like a year of intense outpatient therapy, and i thought it was going good, like i was getting the hang of it and my coworkers are really nice to me, but when one of them goes, “Hey i like her a lot!” about me to a manager, the manager says, “well that makes one of us.” and also i have one last shot at the job next week? and i was going to use this money to help pay for therapy which im already behind on and also abuse stuff is coming up? i dont know. im just real sad and super tired and confused and im not sure what to do. sorry about the downer of a post.

    but really this made me smile real big and i cant thank you all enough for that! happy halloween!

    • Wow, that manager sounds very immature. Sorry that you are dealing with this. You deserve to be appreciated at work!

    • i just wanted to say thank you all for the kind comments, they help a lot! it turns out im not the only one having trouble with the manager, someone wrote him up for something, and now they’re looking into how he runs the store. which, im just glad i can go into work without worrying about impressing someone i know hates me. i feel so much better i cannot even explain it.
      thank you all so much, hope youre having a great weekend!

  23. My roommate dislikes Halloween because she had a traumatic trick-or-treating experience as a child (read: puking all over two driveways in the rich neighborhood), so I’m not sure if we’ll do anything fun tonight. However, last week, I walked through a quarter mile tunnel full of over 5000 jack-o-lanterns. It was magical.

  24. Yeah… I am lazy and also not a big fan of Halloween because of reasons so I don’t have a costume. But I did wear my Gryffindor t-shirt to work today (even though I am RAVENCLAW ALL THE WAY because they don’t make enough Ravenclaw stuff) so that sort of counts as a costume, right? I’m like a totally chill Ginny if she had short hair and was queer.

    As far as FEELINGS go I am having Happy Feelings because I hung out with a new friend last night and we had a super fantastic time and talked about musical theater and hot girls and I am thrilled to have a new friend in this city I recently moved to. Now it looks as though we may both sing in this gender bending cabaret night thing and also road trip to NYC in the spring to see Fun Home on Broadway. And we are in a book club full of other also wonderful queer ladies which is making this whole “making new friends” thing super easy and also fabulous.

  25. It’s cold and rainy outside so instead of going out I plan on being lame and watching netflix all evening with my kitten. My week was super crazy and I think I’ve seen enough kids for one week so that’s probably a good thing.

  26. Hello world,
    I won’t be dressing up this year because I was thinking of going as my ugly self as usual. I will be giving out candy and watching scary movies at home but I did go Devils Night Alleycat bike ride last night.

    We won third place

  27. I love the costumes folks have put here!

    I’m going to a small Halloween get-together with some friends. I’m not sure what all we’ll do. It’s been a slightly stressful week for me, however, so I do know at least one thing that I’ll be doing!

  28. Growing up I loved, loved Halloween –

    (pretty sure this wasn’t halloween, I just dressed as a cat regularly and my mom obliged with a hand made costume)

    But I haven’t really found a way to enjoy it as an adult. Tonight I’ll probably be finishing some work and then hang at my favorite bar for a while.

    Otherwise… I feel like I come here every week and have nothing good/positive to post. Starting to realize my depression might be something I can’t ignore anymore. BUT I’m really loving my job (gallery/exhibition assistant!), and I’m able to pay all my bills + rent today, so I’m thankful for those things.

    And here’s my families cat with a pumpkin. She’s such a sweetheart.

  29. (Friend, are your parent photos supposed to be upside-down? I can’t tell if this is an error or your family attached your car to a ceiling, which would also be impressive.)

    • I do not see them as upside down?? But my parents are a little nutty, so. Wouldn’t put it past them.

  30. I just spotted my first group of people in ‘Ebola hazmat suit’ costumes. Either that or one of my neighbors has Ebola.

    I’ll be wearing a light-up Medusa headdress and going on a tour of the catacombs and graveyard at the Westminster graveyard, where Edgar Allan Poe is buried.

    • Terrifyingly somewhere on the Internet in the last few days I saw a sexy ebola nurse costume. I stumbled across it btw, it wasn’t something I was looking for!

  31. Rumors Of My Situation Have Left Me Sufficiently Alarmed
    Despite Appearances
    Though It Seems I May Have Spoken Too Much Already

  32. My dog is dressing up as puddle for Halloween mud puppy

    I wasn’t going to do anything, but I put on my spooky cat kigurumi to be in the spirit. spooooky cat

  33. I’ve had a kind of crummy week, so I’m not really in the Halloween spirit. I’ve been getting sexually harassed and was even groped by a boy in one of my classes. I’m getting misgendered constantly. I’m struggling to explain my appearance and name change to people I am not out to or close to because they won’t stop asking me about it. I can’t sleep at night. My best friend hasn’t spoken to me nearly all week, and I know she’s stressed from work and school and most likely also suffers from depression and anxiety (she hasn’t been to any sort of doctor in years), but I have a horrible tendency to blame myself when she isn’t happy, and this has even resulted in self-harm and suicide attempts. All I seem to do is cry, and my mother isn’t very happy about my sitting out on the festivities.

    • That’s not okay and I’m so sorry you have to deal with that! Feel free to message me if you want to talk about it.

      Also, have these things:

    • I know how it feel to be misgendered and groped. It’s never fun. But, thankfully we have autostraddle to make us feel better. *ask first if they can give a consensual hug* it does get better.

    • I’m sorry you’re having such a crummy time! If I were there I wouldn’t ask you a single question about your appearance and name change and would tell you your friend’s depression isn’t your fault. You do you!

    • Grrrr, argh, that is not ok- the harassment, groping, and the misgendering. Sorry that’s happening. *internet hugs, if you want them*

    • I’m sorry to hear some people in the world are being d-bags to you. I will give you a consensual hug via the interweb because it’s the best I can do.

    • I’m so sorry all this is happening to you. None of it is your fault.

      I hope you’re getting some support; if not right where you are, just remember you’ve got a community here.

  34. Me and A are going to CAKEAGEDDON tomorrow ( I don’t know what it involves but I am assuming some combination of eating cake + being chased. I will be calling on my former teenage self for the help of gothing it up for the occasion.

  35. I’m so excited about my costume I’m not even taking the time to take a picture before I tell you all about it…

    I am the Ghost of My Halloween’s Past. muhahahaha….

    puppy- the head covering with ears still fits! I loved this costume so much I threw a temper tantrum when my mom told me no, there was no way she could make it fit any more.

    robin- a posterboard oval sloppily colored red and pinned to a brown shirt. I went as this the year I could no longer be a puppy and I’m pretty sure I made up my mind the day before Halloween and INSISTED. We bought long-johns we dyed brown and I made the red chest and wings from posterboard and I wore the toucan beak we happened to have around the house. Everyone was confused about what I was supposed to be.

    hag- long black skirt. I wanted to go as a witch but wasn’t allowed because of Satan. In fact, my mom came dangerously close to outlawing Halloween on multiple occassions.

    mime- face paint

    mae west- sparkly rhinestone jewelry

    sexy creepy bird thing- the angel wings I spray painted black and purple.

    I’m leaving out “Indian princess” (cringe… I was 9), Princess Buttercup from the Princess Bride because of the simperingness, and the headless guy because I couldn’t find the right mask to stuff with newspaper.

    I can’t wait for everyone to ask me “What the hell are you?”

  36. I draw cartoon chickens and they are often in funny costumes. You’ve just inspired me to draw a unicorn chicken!!! Great idea! Instagram @daily_bird

  37. I was zombie Amy Winehouse last weekend. Tonight, I’m a badass Velma.

    Hopefully this works:

    if not, it’s on my tumblr:

  38. I decided to be Marilyn Manson as an homage to my 14 year old self. And also because I just wanted to do something fun with makeup. HAPPY HALLOWEEN, AUTOSTRADDLE.

  39. No costume tonight because I already rocked out in my dancing-pumpkin face-weatherman guy costume last weekend (for reference: here):

    But I did my makeup all festive and shit!

    And my dog is in the spirit…if that spirit is murderous and embarrassed:

    • I have a hat like that I’ve only occasional wore for greeting trick or treater’s at the door at Halloween’s past. It’s looks better on your furry friend there.

  40. Ali, you are perfect in that onesie! Thank you Stef for making photos to let us see this. My life for sure got better because of this.
    I am not celebrating Halloween but I had amazing dinner with my dearest friend and now I am going to sleep, it’s 1:00 am here and I’m so tired. So, have fun!

  41. I am super busy with school and everyone seems to be working and every other year for ever I’ve done a big constume-y thing and gone out. This year I have candy and pumpkin beer and am going to watch Hocus Pocus and Casper and Nightmare Before Christmas and The Legend of Sleepy Hollow and maybe the Addams Family if I get really crazy!

  42. We aren’t getting any trick or treaters :c ALI CAN YOU COME TRICK OR TREAT HERE BC YOU ARE ADORABLE we have full size candy bars

    Other than that i have no exciting life. I am going to a Halloween/housewarming party, where i will not be able to drink because of my antidepressants. I hope there’s a ton of candy to make up for the fact that i am not allowed to get drunk. I’m also planning on dressing up, so there’s that, too.

    I’m basically just chugging along. I’ve been pretty blunted and empty recently, and something bad happened earlier this week where i did manage to cry, so im pretty consistently feeling drained. I wish i had a pet, or something. Feeling weird is sucking.

    Also my room is super cold and i dont know where my A-camp hoodie is. :c

    • Can you get a pet?

      My cat does so much for my mental health. An ex I was trying to be friends with found her when she came by to collect the bananagrams I’d borrowed. “Did you know there’s a kitten in your back yard?” Two and a half years later and I don’t ever talk to the ex (not super hard feelings, just friending didn’t work) but on days when I just don’t want to do anything and can’t get out of bed she crawls on top of me and is warm and purring and perfect and wonderful and it helps.

    • Hey, re: pets—a family member was prescribed a cat by his therapist. He says the cat DEFINITELY helps. And the note from his therapist helped him get the cat into graduate school housing.

      • i live alone with my cat (cue jokes), and i constantly tell him (my cat, cue jokes) that my life would be a whole lot sadder without him in it. he is currently all cuddled up on my lap and i am typing sideways as to not interfere with the cuddles.

    • YES TO ALL THE PETS. Even the SW at work who is a family and marriage therapist has told me that having a pet is super duper beneficial for you. I think that finding your Acamp hoodie is beneficial also.

  43. Today I told my psychologist that Autostraddle is a thing. Later we discussed how Mass Effect is objectively the best video game. I lucked out in the medical practitioner lottery, folks

  44. I am the Ghost of (my) Halloween Past!!!

    Puppy robin hag (not witch because satan) mime mae west creepy/sexy bird. Not pictured: gaudy rhinestone jewelry for mae west and long black skirt for hag. Some costumes left out.

  45. I skipped out on the whole costume thing this year, but I did pass out candy at my dad’s tonight. While I was passing it out, my sister decided to take my nephew around the neighborhood. They weren’t gone long since it was cold and gross outside. After she got back, she hung out with me as I passed out candy to the the stragglers that were coming around. Neither one of us were paying attention, and she didn’t notice a kid in a giant chicken suit walk up until he was right at the door. Naturally she jumped about a foot in the air. Me being me, I enjoyed it so much that I told the kid he could take as much candy as he wanted. He asked, “Can I have the whole bowl?” So I did the only logical thing anyone would do in the same situation. I dumped the whole bowl of candy into his bag. What can I say, he earned it.

  46. Halloween is becoming more of a but still not really a thing in Australia. There’s a little kid that lives next door to me so I bought some snacks in case he came trick or treating and he, er, didn’t. Nor did anyone else. So I’ve just got these snacks.


    Since I didn’t dress up I don’t have a picture but I did recently get my Sensual into Consensual shirt so have a looksy!

    Other than that I need to finish writing a paper about male infertility today, and I’ve started NaNoWriMo (!!!) Here’s hoping it’s a good November :D

  47. My Halloween involved a light snow flurry shower in Indianapolis!! I was shower excited because I’ve never experienced a week that involved being 80 degrees and snow in the same seven days.

    I also went to an arcade party at a bar and had a little Samhain ritual at the house.

    Looking forward to buying all the leftover candy in two days!

    • Your Halloween sounds lovely! What candy are you going to go after? I’m all over Reeses at the moment.

  48. Wow, I feel like I am part of a cult, because I literally just wanna say, “Autostraddle is the truth,” and all ya’ll know you wanna give me an “amen!”

    Halloween was FANTASTIC!!!!!!! Trick or treating with my kidlet nieces and nephews. I straight up stole my 4 year old niece’s costume, right off her tiny but graciously giving back. My sister made wings for her out of feather boas. So I was a bird!! :D And I shook my tail feathers at the local homo watering hole and had a grande ole time!

    In other news – got a job with real hours, still not drinking, and may have a girlfriend. Still abstinent also, so had to tell this lady that if she wants in my pants she has to wait til December 4th along with everyone else. ;)

    Tell me about your Halloween, Straddlers!

    • Oh, how cute was your halloween?

      Congratulations on a job with good hours; it makes such a difference to life. I hope it works out well for you.

      Also congrats on the may be girlfriend. If she sees your loveliness she’ll wait. Also a month will fly by; where is time doing these days?


      fun fact: when I was a child I didn’t like that it was only a/men/ so I would also say a-girl.

      I’m so so glad everything went/is going welll!!

      My halloween was great but I’m going to write a big long post about it, so.

  49. Halloween!

    I went as the Sensational She Hulk! Which I promise you is a thing. Sorry some folks didn’t know!

    Here, I am with my friend Evelyne as Wonder Woman for an awesome DC/Marvel crossover!

    Then a pose with was grainy because the lighting in the bar wasn’t ideal:

    It was a fun night other than a drunk guy apparently thinking I was a guy in drag and making incredibly inappropriate comments. And then some issues with the bathroom and some drunk ladies who’s filters weren’t working and they were rude until they realized how rude they were being. I actually ended up using the men’s room which felt like I betrayed myself. Ugh.

    In other news, there was an amazing woman dancing on the bar in what is kind of a gay bar. So… That was a plus. Those sorts of feelings are very different now that I’m on HRT, but I felt something there. Yowza ; )

    Anyway, like I said, mostly a good night.

    Oh, did I mention that I met Janet Mock?

    She came to the University of Illinois and did a book signing and gave a talk. She is just as amazing and beautiful as you already think she is! Please let her radiance blind you to my blinking and in-progress smile.

    My face is still a little bit swollen and weird feeling after having large volume electrolysis last weekend. Thank goddess I was on vacation this week.

    Love you all!

    • I’m disappointed that people are unaware of Jennifer Walters, attorney at law and super-heroine.

      More disappointed that people were being assholes to you.

      But fuck ’em you met Janet Mock and took that fantastic picture with her!

      Where you kinda look like my mom’s high school senior picture a bit >_>

      • I totally agree! How is it that The Avengers is a thing now, and no one knows she hulk. I know they cleaned up the cast for the film, since basically every marvel hero has been an avenger, but c’mon! ; )

        Yeah, boo rude people. I’ve got to strengthen my emotional armour.

        It’s kind of funny, Janet had spoke of it sometimes being hard for trans women to go out in the world, and here it was, Halloween, and I faced some of the issues she touched on.

        Anyway, she was really great and all I could say was how amazing it was to meet her.

  50. Halloween for the past several years has just been Awkward Movie Drag Night for me and this year, I talked a friend into dressing up as Christopher Lee in The Wicker Man with me. We tried to talk one of my roommates into being Willow because Britt Ecklund is her everyday look, but she wouldn’t commit.

    I also dressed up as Marceline earlier in the day and went to the public library, but didn’t manage to get any photos of that. =(

  51. I had a halloween party! I’ve never done that before. a friend and I were complaining last week that we had nothing to do for halloween and that the lgbt group we’re members of should do something, and I realized that I could totally host something myself.

    it wasn’t that big – like 10 people at its peak, but it ended up being pretty fun. we watched a weird campy movie on netflix and played taboo which is my favorite game ever. there was also some poetry recitation and a partial singing of that dwarves song from the hobbit.

    I am terrible and took like zero pictures, but I have evidence of my costume and part of my roommate’s while not in use. I was punk rock robin and he was grumpy dad batman.

    I had this robin costume from when I was like 19 – it was a kid-sized suit that I cut in half to make fit. the pants are long gone but I still had the top so I figured what the heck.

    drawing on my cape: a pain in the ass but worth it I think.

    my roommate’s prop. an excellent 75 cents spent on the mug which I then drew on. I’m no artist, buuuut it’s still kinda great.

    (sorry I’ve said 8 million things.)

  52. ali, i loved this open thread. the pics of you walking around nyc in that costume just made my heart burst with rainbow glitter. this should become a weekly series where you walk around nyc and take pics in iconic nyc locations as an adorable and slightly hapless unicorn.
    i would love that so so much.

  53. I had a great Halloween! My friends go all out and rebuild the front of their home each year – this year was middle-earth. We hand out chocolate coins to over 500 kids! A friend’s 4-year old was doing most of the handing out, which was incredibly cute. I went as Elrond, and got told I was a fantastic Arwen. *Facepalm…Fail*

    If I can ever get the photos to load, I’ll post them…

    Love to you all on All Souls day.

  54. I’ve never dressed up for halloween, and even though my office encouraged it, I was too lazy/uninspired to start dressing up at 22. My partner dressed up as Gene Belcher and was pretty convincing.
    So instead of dressing up, I enjoyed the beautiful fall weather with my Borgi:

    • Oh! But today, I made frybread as ofrendas. Too far away to leave it on the resting place, so I’ll just eat it with my partner and hope the dead know that I meant well and thought of them all day today.

  55. Well I was actually still up when this posted last night and thought I might actually manage to comment on Friday, but no.

    Halloween isn’t a thing over here so the whole day passed unnoticed, except for social media being full of people’s babies in cute outfits. When I taught little ones in Korea I would dress up as a witch. Mostly because if involves very little by way of a costume; pointy has, dust face with shimmery green eyeshadow and job done. There was an option for them to go trick or treating around the classrooms, but mostly we just gave the kids treats. I used to love making up little bags for each student; it’s actually really meditative to just sit with a pile of assorted candy and place in into bags.

    In life news work continues to be busy and I found out I’m losing next saturday to proctor an exam for our sister department. Since when did universities hold exams on Saturdays? Oh, and I’m currently spending Saturday night grading student essays, again. Don’t let it be said that I don’t know how to have fun!

      • Oh, he is. He’s got a killer resting bitch face. I think it’s ’cause he knows his cousins are kicking it with the Queen (he’s a Beagle/Corgi)

  56. HALLOWEEN IS THE BEST. and yes, i know it’s technically over, but it is still halloween in my world, and i will be going out for the third night in a row. this is the first real halloween for me in 3 years too, thanks to being in various bands that always had lame out of town shows for a couple years, then being in new zealand for one year, so i have some catching up to do.


  57. Oh my bod Ali you are the greatest and I want to take you to this candy store in the Riverwalk mall that has a candy bar like one would have a salad bar but I think where you live they probably have like 5 if it’s NYC. I’d trail you what ever ballet costume of mine still fits with a basket of glitter.

    My Halloween was small but great.
    I went to a party and when I got there the hostess was in the middle of putting the finishing touches on her daughter’s costume, Zombie Elsa!
    There were hot dogs that were wrapped in pretzel dough like little mummies. Bloody punch with fruit and a floating hand with some sort of bubbling fog machine thing under the punch bowl. Squishy sickly popcorn balls that looked like brains with a jelly corpus callosum.
    The icing on the cake though was the home-made movie theatre in the backyard showing the series Tales From the Crypt. When the wind blew the tarps moved ever so slightly, it was perfectly creepy. Later in the evening some of us found ourselves in there when the “tape” had finished and we ended up in a circle telling ghost stories.

    Before I went to the party I wanted to post some stuff on this lovely Halloween Friday Open Thread but didn’t get the chance cause I had frost my cake mix cookie sandwiches. They were chocolate with orange frosting, half I did like regular round cookies the rest were baked in a scone pan. They looked like Halloween spirit finger-sandwiches made o’ sugar :3

    What I wanted to post was this play list I’m trying to work on, I call it “All Shall Love Me and Despair.”

    This is what I got so far:

    After Dark – Tito and Tarantula

    Black Magic Woman- Santana

    Black Magic Woman- El Vez

    Devil Woman- Cliff Richards

    Femme Bitch Top- Tribe 8

    Her Black Wings- Danzig

    Witchy Woman- The Eagles

    She Rides- Danzig

    Heart of Lilith- Inkubus Sukkubus

    So Straddlers do you have any tracks you think need to be on the list? Cause I’m stuck and it’s too short.

    Also wanted to post these:



    Less winter is death time depressing-ness

    Yes, I’m a dork and was briefly at peace with my self and the world when I was 16 and listened to Inkubus Sukkubus alot, their cover of Paint It Black is the best ever and nothing will convince me otherwise. That last one is Loreena McKennitt, thank you Canada.
    Happy All Souls Day?

  58. I’m a little late posting since I was busy out having the best Halloween of my life! This was my first year going out to a bar to celebrate, and it was fantastic! It was a wonderful evening with even more wonderful people I’m lucky to call my friends.
    Though Halloween was rockin, this week was pretty shitty for me. Things seem to be settling somewhat, after a few months of constant craziness. Also, it hit me today that I think I could possibly being going through a quarter life crisis. Not the end of the world, but still not the most fun thing to deal with lol.
    Hope y’all had a great week, and an even better Halloween!

    Now here is my costume. It is my favorite I’ve ever worn so far in life :D

  59. Every year I want to be prepared and have an awesome and new costume, but I don’t get my shit together in time. So I end up dressing as Rosie the Riveter, which is okay because she is strong and cool and herstorical. And I don’t have to buy anything for the costume!

    Halloween night was kind of a let down. I had tickets for a great bluegrass band but the venue was flooded with so many obnoxious drunk college kids who were intent on creating a mosh pit in the front of the stage. You can’t have a mosh pit at a bluegrass show! So I left halfway through in disgust. I went to Ikea yesterday though, which redeemed my sucky Friday night.


    You GUYS you guys I love you all and I want to tell you all about my life but writing is stressing me out because I have a bunch of writing for school right now and so I’m just not quite up for a proper post HOWEVER here are some pictures because those require less word thinking

    The community pool I swim at all the time decorated for Halloween a couple weeks ago. I love this pool and the people who work here.

    Musa lookin’ fancy, not for Halloween but just because.

    This week I babysat my nephew, which was fun because he is a cute silly happy baby but also exhausting jesus christ I am so tired still? This is my favorite outfit he owns–black jeans and red suspenders. It is a BABY in SUSPENDERS so cute SO CUTE!!

    My brother and sister in law and nephew live up in the bay area, so even though I had a baby in my arms the whole time, I did get to enjoy the city a bit while I was babysitting!

    Overall it was pretty fun, and I’m glad I got to hang with my nephew! But I have to say that the worst part of babysitting was that I was constantly mistaken for his (straight) mom. It made me wildly uncomfortable, and also every queer girl I smiled at (you’re queer! I’m queer! I appreciate you! Solidarity! Butch Nod! Smile smile smile!) looked at me very suspiciously. Even though I’ve been told I look pretty straight (kinda femme? long hair? No tattoos? I don’t even know what looking queer means anymore but it’s still a thing??? I don’t know this is dumb or something. I am uncomfortable. See me! Seee meee!!), I usually seem to get recognized as queer, at least by other queers I spot/smile-nod to on the street. But nothing this whole week, except for maybe the hour I spent alone in the oakland museum! That was heaven. Anyway it was something I hadn’t even thought about that ended up really bothering me. When I eventually have a kid I’m going to have to put rainbow stickers all over the stroller or something. It bothered me a strangely large amount. It is kind of maybe still bothering me. Ugh!

    My mum’s back went out really bad a couple weeks ago and she’s got two herniated discs and a bunch of other shit, so I’ve been doing my best to keep her from dying because I love her and she’s in pain like all the time? STRESSSSS. She’s been at the chiropractor’s almost every day, and she’s started researching back surgeons. I do not like being reminded of my family’s mortality (and mine, let’s be real I am kind of self centered sometimes).
    ANYway it was her birthday recently so I made her pretty flowers and she seemed like she had a really wonderful time, even with the back stuff!

    Succulents! This is your plant picture for the week, people. I have a bunch of others I want to work on editing so there’ll be more next week :)

    I was Medusa for Halloween! I know there were decent pictures taken of me in costume but there aren’t any up online yet, so you guys have to make do with these bathroom selfies. Lucky you??

    In-progress shot of putting in the snakes–it took quite a while!

    All the snakes are in! And I’m wearing makeup and everything! And my top that was as close to Lex’s lovely draping tutorial as I could find!

    Closeup of the snake braid, because I was particularly proud of how it turned out!

    So yeah. For Halloween I went to a party with my parents and their friends, ended up handing out halloween candy, which was super fun because their street’s really busy. Some nice girls dressed as football players gave me two jello shots. I gave out candy by the overflowing handful, and we JUST managed to give it all out by the end of the night! Saw about a million Elsas and many, many drunken adults stumbling down the street to the bars. It was so great. Sadly girlfriend Holly (giiiirrrrlfriiiieeeennndd eeee!) had to work, but she has a really adorable hipster bee costume, so next week we’re going to make up reasons to be in costume!
    The weather has finally been cooler this weekend; it even rained! I am wearing fall clothes and not even sweating a little bit. Life is pretty good!

    So this is more than I meant to write, and there is a lot more but that is good for now. I love you all. I miss you when I’m late to the friday thread! I will try to be more timely next week :)

  61. Ugh I didn’t do anything Halloweeny this Halloween and basically just went to Brooklyn Night Bazaar and had a lonely dinner.. And then I watched The Book of Life and cried.
    I was just too lazy this year. Since I’m a perfectionist at Halloween costumes I rather not wear one than prepare something last minute and half-assed like a transportation worker or a cat.
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