Every year, a few Halloween costumes are so ubiquitous it's painful. Just think back and cringe at how many Amy Winehouses, Sarah Palins, and Twilight characters you saw last year. And wearing the cliché of the year isn't just clueless; it also ensures someone else at the party will show up in the same digs.
Riptide is here to help. These are the trendy, ripped-from-the-headlines costumes you must avoid at all costs — and some alternatives to help you stand out.
Honey Boo Boo. Everyone — from Southern, size-12 sorority girls to fat dudes who have always wanted to wear a dress — is plotting this outfit right now. The pintsize pageant queen will be to this Halloween what Snooki was to 2010. Plus, do you really want anyone to hit on you while you're dressed as a redneck 6-year-old?
Alternative: Glitzy the gay pig.
To go as Honey Boo Boo's beloved pig, all you need are six-pack abs, glittery body lotion, a pink Speedo with a corkscrew tail attached, and a fake pig nose.
The Miami Zombie. You're just playing with karma here, especially if you wear it in Miami.
Alternative: Bath salts.
You could go the literal route and dress up as a package of Spice or K2. You could go the figurative route, as a salt shaker in a bathtub. Or you could just go as the Morton's Salt girl as a zombie.
Binders full of women. You know some last-minute liberal will go to Office Depot, pick up a three-ring binder, fill it with pages from Maxim, and hang it around his neck to mock Romney's debate gaffe.
Alternative: Binder full of Mitt Romney's tax returns.
If you're going to be that lazy, save yourself the time and don't fill the binder with anything. Just label it "Mitt Romney's tax returns."
Ozzie Guillen. There was no greater sports horror story this year than the Miami Marlins, but put away your Technicolor Marlins jersey and the Fidel Castro doll you plan to clutch all night.
Alternative: The Marlins' home-run sculpture.
Sure to induce nightmares in the young and seizures in the elderly. But how to pay for such a fanciful costume? Simple: Pick the pockets of Miami taxpayers.
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Clint Eastwood and his empty chair. First of all, are you really going to carry around an empty chair all night? No. No, you are not. And without the chair, people will just mistake your Clint Eastwood costume for the Crypt Keeper.
Alternative: Ann Romney's Olympics horse.
Rafalca is one classy horse.