A stroll through campus last Saturday evening proved to be one of the most bizarre experiences that I’ve had in a while. When else but during Halloween can you find Waldo walking around Wilson Commons, the Ninja Turtles marching out of Psi Upsilon and Luigi walking on the Frat Quad? This hodgepodge of story book characters, cartoons and video games emerged from my memories to party together. Yet I was quickly slapped out of this childhood fantasy by a group of girls sporting the strumpet look, which seemed to be as popular as ever this year.

Yes, you can get away with almost anything during Halloween. Unfortunately, most of the girls were inflicted with the “we can definitely pull it off” mentality and ended up resembling each other. Showing more leg than the Radio City Rockettes, most sought the opportunity to wear that one outfit that on any other weekend would win them a conversation with security. The Twister Board and the Sugar Baby Girls do deserve an honorable mention as the few who did not leave little to the imagination.

I was quite surprised, however, to see the creativity and resourcefulness of the gentlemen who turned simple, everyday items into elaborate masterpieces. Anything from toilet paper and balloons to duct tape and boxes became fair game for a costume. Simplicity was the greatest attribute for some of the outfits, with some writing clever messages on signs or on their clothing (like the guy who dressed up as a breathalyzer test with the words “blow here” written on his lower torso). Rolls of toilet paper became mummy costumes, duct tape became clothing and green balloons were used to create grape batches. Leonardo, Donatello, Michelangelo and Raphael were all present and ready for combat.

There is a certain sense of respect for people who spent nothing to make their costumes, but some who purchased their costumes also stood out as crowd favorites, including Darth Vader, Sasquatch and the poser guy from the T-Mobile commercials. The top honors go to the brave gladiators from Keystone Light, who, armed with elaborate shields, swords and helmets made from boxes, were ready to fight off sobriety.

Amidst the gorillas, gangsters, cops, pirates, angels, devils and soldiers, I felt strangely out of place in my regular street clothes. The only regret I will walk away with this year is the fact that I did not purchase or make a costume. With my “to do” list threatening to implode on itself, the farthest thing on my mind was the fact that the last weekend before Halloween was before us. As I attempted to come up with a last-minute solution, I fell short of any expectations of a clever costume and ended up with a faux-hawk and a soccer jersey-a pathetic attempt at the David Beckham look.

By the end of the night however, as the pirates and ninjas settled their differences over a drink and Waldo and the grapes stumbled their way to the dorms, I concluded it was a great night overall. I’ll just have to prepare better next year.

Fernandez is a member ofthe class of 2008.

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