It’s that time of year again; Rhonda is stringing that cotton-ball spider-webby stuff all over the front desk at work, Mark from accounting is bitching about his kids eating too much sugar and the new receptionist, Michelle, wants to do something ‘fun’ for the whole office this Halloween. A dilemma as old as time: how to Halloween in a professional setting.
Do I go all out with a costume? Is there a contest and whoever wins gets the coveted, yet elusive, Halloween Bonus? A thousand times, yes. Do you have a client meeting or important presentation? Pass.
Do I go understated and chill? Can I wear a funky hat and/or shirt and call it good? Can I just bring candy and leave it in a bowl in the conference room? Use your best judgment. If you’ve established yourself as the chill/funky/cool one in the office, then yeah, dress down and surprise everyone with, like a spooky homemade treat or something good. You’ll be the equivalent of the rich house in the neighborhood that always gave out king sized candy bars.
What is appropriate? We’re all semi-adults here; so again, use your best judgment! Your super well thought out Gayberham Lincoln getup is better suited for pretty much anywhere else.
Will HR be in the office that day? Yes? Probably best to save the sexy authority figure costume for happy hour.
Is everybody else dressing up? Put out some feelers at the water cooler or whatever the 2015 equivalent is for that. Worst case scenario, just text whichever coworker you’re closest to the night before and pull an “if you will, I will.”
What if this is a prank because I’m new and nobody is actually dressing up and I’m going to look like an idiot and everyone will make fun of me? If you have a feeling that you’re being duped by the office prankster (I’m lookin at u, Julie), just refer to the “understated and chill” thought. Next year there will be new prey and nobody will even remember that you showed up in a handmade cabaret costume and full stage makeup.
Are we going to be forced to take a group picture with everyone in the office? This is almost guaranteed. :/
Do I have to dress up as something different than what I already have planned for my friends costume party this weekend or can I just modify it for work? If it can be tweaked and you’re the type that has no problem repeating outfits, go for it. Besides, we all know it only matters if the group photo from work is going to be posted on social media. Even if it is, you can always untag yourself so it doesn’t steal your thunder that weekend!
Should I show up in normal clothes but bring costume options in a bag, just in case? Live on the edge! Trust your gut! Just puh-leeeze don’t show up in your regular work clothes and when a coworker asks where your costume is you say “I’m a (whatever your job title is).” That’s SO lame and SUCH a college sophomore boy thing to do.
If all else fails just wear jeans, a leather jacket, and some butt'ns. sure Sandy & Danny from Grease are TOTALLY played out, but it’s a classic and least you’ll get credit for joining in on the fun, unlike that crank, Mark, from accounting.
Kelsy O’Neill is Julie's roommate and also a writer.
She likes black olives on her pizza. She’s thinking about trying acid wash jeans. Do you think she should? Tweet her to give her your opinion on the matter.