Two Halloweens ago, I bashed baby costumes, and heaped quite specific vitriol on the infamous Martha Stewart lobster baby costume.

Little did I know that a year later, I’d be knocked up (the planned kind of knocked up), and that two years later (meaning now), I’d lie awake at night lactating and plotting my baby’s first truly public embarrassment: his 2009 Halloween costume.

I’ve actually hated Halloween for years — to me, it’s no more than excuse for otherwise pleasant adults to turn into masked assholes. The few times in the past 20 years that I’ve deigned to go out in costume on Halloween, I’ve resorted to my cactus get-up, which consists of green clothes + clothespins. The cactus get-up is perfect for those, like me, who are: 1) lazy, 2) cheap, and 3) open to the possibility of foreplay à la clothespin.

With the arrival of Henry, the erotic possibilities of clothespins have dramatically receded, and even I’m not mean enough to dress my child up as a cactus (imagine the “Oh, he’s a prick!” jokes). I am, however, still lazy and cheap. And I love to kill two birds with one stone.

So, here was the suite of conditions for Henry’s costume since he’s more fun to dress up than I am:

1) Food-related so it could be BAB’d

2) Super easy because I’m exhausted

3) Cheap because we’re in a recession

4) Handmade because I’m a snob

5) Green because it’s his color and my color, and because these days you just can’t go wrong with green

6) Wearable as a winter-layer long after Oct. 31 because I can’t find a winter jacket for a 12-month-old that I don’t think is horrid, and I’m sure as hell not going to sew TWO different things this fall when I could just sew ONE.

So, taking all of those factors into account, the only real solution was a poncho that could be interpreted as a costume. A fleece poncho. A green fleece poncho.

With this vague green fuzzy vision, Henry and I headed off to Stonemountain and Daughter Fabrics to cruise. And little by little, notion by notion, we assembled the materials that would prevent the erroneous perception of Henry as a Bolivian Kermit or a marijuana leaf fit for the Jolly Green Giant.

henry as a salad for halloween 2009
Photo and Photoshop by Wendy Goodfriend

Presto: A salad costume! Throw him around and he’s a tossed salad. If he’s tired, he’s a wilted salad. Put him on a horse and he’s a Cobb salad. Not only will this costume get a kid through the cold months, but it can also double as a Christmas tree blanket.

Ingredients: Fleece, buttons, rickrack, thread, brazen enthusiasm for humiliating your child.

It’s Easy Being Green on Halloween 27 October,2009Meghan Laslocky

  • My god. I love it and this post. Your Henry just gets cuter in every photo.

    I gave into the baby-as-food costume this year, too. Dressed him as a chili pepper. Couldn’t help it.

  • My god. I love it and this post. Your Henry just gets cuter in every photo.

    I gave into the baby-as-food costume this year, too. Dressed him as a chili pepper. Couldn’t help it.
    Sorry, forgot to add great post! Can’t wait to see your next post!

  • Yvonne

    Are you going to make stir fry out of him this time?


Meghan Laslocky

Meghan Laslocky is a writer, editor, and producer who lives in San Francisco. She aspires to one day be a person who: Shops every week at the farmers’ market and always has fresh romanescu on hand; eats only politically correct meat from cows that voted for Obama; never ever has to buy canned chicken stock because she always has oodles of it in a fabulously well-organized freezer.
In the meantime, she shops at Trader Joe’s in the off hours, heartily enjoys corn-fed beef that is likely campaigning for McCain, tries to feel better about herself by buying canned chicken stock that is labeled as organic or free range, and produces web sites for KQED, including videos like this about the hot ‘n’ heavy last dark hours of the kind of squid that become fried calamari. As she writes this bio, she is eating Dilettante chocolate covered bing cherries and drinking Cline Pinot Gris. Be advised: they do not “go.”

Her work has been published by and the San Francisco Chronicle. She is a graduate of the UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism, where she did not study with Michael Pollan, much as she likes him.

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