The Legend of the Roller Coaster

I love fall. So, so much.

I love the weather and the soups and the festivities.

I love that we, the American people, have a unhealthy obsession with pumpkin-flavoring. Pies, lattes, M&Ms, cookies, soups…name the food, it’s been pumpkined. And I buy it all.

This month in particular takes me back to a time I’ll never forget: the legendary costume fail of October 2010.

I could get into the whole back story behind this particular October, but all you really need to know is that we had started a new class at church that combined single and newly married folk – re-branded as a “Young Adults” class.

The way we handled integrating the old class and the new class and the married and the single wasn’t the best. The new leaders took over what the old leaders had been doing and, long story short, it could have gone more smoothly. We had quite a few…growing pains.

A couple of months into this new class, someone threw a Halloween costume party, as an ice-breaker of sorts. As a way for everyone to have fun outside of the church building.

A few things to note: 1) I love dressing up in costumes. 2) I take great pride in uniquely funny costumes. I dressed my kid up as a peanut last year and thought it was thefunniesthingever.

So, the party. New class, new people, and an opportunity to show off my spiritual gift of costuming.

After much Google research and guilting Taylor into dressing up with me, I decided on a roller coaster car costume. Because if you’re going to break the ice, break it hard. Go big or go home.

We used this pattern…

Rollercoaster Costume Photo: Krossbow | CC

…and constructed our own cardboard box costume and headed to the party.

We parked in front of the house, unloaded our costume, adjusted the fake legs, and walked up to the front door.

Did I mention we had never met the hosts before?

As I raised my fist to knock on the door, Taylor stopped me and said, “No one else is dressed up.”

Me: “What do you mean no one else is dressed up? This is a costume party.”
Taylor: “I’m saying look in the front window of the house. Plain clothes everywhere.”
Me: “Whatever. Move over and let me se….ohhhh no. Ohhhhhh no. Walk away. WALKAWAYWALKAWAYWALKAWAY.”

So we walked away. Down the street. Just the two of us and our conjoined roller coaster costume.

Taylor: “Just act natural. Play it cool.”
Sarah: “Play it coo…are you kidding me? There is absolutely nothing normal about walking down a street in a cardboard box with fake legs dangling off the front!

I called the only person I knew in attendance and asked what the heck was going on and why no one was dressed up. She informed me that what we saw was “the other part of the party”. (???) She assured us we were good to come inside.

I made her come out and walk us in.

In retrospect, our costume should have thrown up some red flags.

Like, maybe, the fact that we were trying to ease the tension in our new married/singles class by focusing less on whether everyone was married or single, yet we chose a costume where we, a married couple, were physically stuck together all night.

And then, of course, was the width of the costume. We didn’t factor in walking through a front door.

So, we shimmied. Sideways. Into someone’s home. (Someone, remember, we’d never laid eyes on before.) “Such a pleasure to meet you. If you could just be a dear and move that entry table out of the way…we’ve got a wide load coming through.”

No need to introduce ourselves as Taylor and Sarah Brooks. It was pretty clear we came together and intended to leave together. And sit, stand, eat, and mingle through the whole party together.

The only thing more uncomfortable than entering a party sideways is that as we walked inside, everything stopped. It was one of those movie-esque times where it gets eerily quiet and everyone stops and looks.

We walked from the front of the house (the other party) to the back of the house (theĀ costumed party) in complete silence. No one laughed, just watched.

Finally, someone spoke up with:

Partygoer: “So…what are you?”
Me: “A roller coaster car!”
(cue outbursts of laughter from the other attendees blank stares)
Partygoer: “Oh. From what movie?”
Me: “Pardon?”
Partygoer: “It’s a movie-themed costume party. What movie are you from?”

Hah…ha..h. Movie theme, you say? Missed the memo on that one.

But I got the memo loud and clear that not everyone appreciates a good DIY roller coaster car, seeing as no one laughed. Ever. Not even a chuckle.

Maybe it was all in the footrest. Maybe our legs were too dangly. We took a construction shortcut and it could’ve cost us. Who knows.

roller coaster

Good to know for next time, you guys.

Ahhhh, October.

I love you and the memories you bring about.

I love remembering the costume that crashed and burned so hard we’re still a little bit scarred from it. I love how quickly we took it off and how the fake legs slung over Taylor’s shoulder looked like he was transporting a drunken idiot. I love remembering how we laughed until we almost puked on the way home. And, most of all, I remember that being the last time Taylor ever let me make a decision.

Just kidding. Kind of.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *