Now that I've attended at least one party, I can reveal this year's Halloween costume. I didn't have anything particular planned up to a week before the party. I have at least half a dozen stand-by costumes I can pull together at the last minute, but I always feel just a tinge of guilt if I don't draw on my creativity and concoct something new. Just as I was getting really anxious about it, the Grim Reaper came to my rescue and the news of Barbara Billingsley's death hit the interwebs last Saturday.
Even when I was 15 years old without a single dress in my closet, I loved the style that I called, "Mrs. Cleaver dresses." I'd hated skirts and dresses growing up - I had three older brothers. In the 70s, I wore pantsuits. But in the 80s, when my friends started to drive, we began having little Saturday adventures downtown, where we'd hit the Salvation Army and scavenge the vintage clothing stores. Every once in a while, I'd hit the jackpot and find a little 1950s shirtdress that sort of actually fit.
My love for vintage clothing continued into adulthood, and it served me well during my swingdancing phase. Poodle skirts, saddle shoes, bobby socks - I've got it covered. So when Barbara Billingsley died - Mrs. June Cleaver - I thought, "How can I work that into a costume?"
That night before falling asleep, I had a little nugget of an idea: "June Meat Cleaver." It sounded pretty cool, but I wasn't sure what it meant, what it would really look like.
When I awoke the next morning, I sought my husband's input. "For Halloween, I think I want to be June Meat Cleaver. What does that say to you?"
"That I married the perfect wife?" he answered groggily.
First I was confused that he'd misinterpreted my question. Then I simultaneously blushed and gagged since he'd ambushed me with another sickly sweet smarm-bomb.
Then I marveled that there existed a man in this world who would think "June Meat Cleaver" sounded like the perfect wife. And that I'd had the incredible luck to find him.