The Jewish holiday of Purim is fast approaching, and I'm scrambling to find costumes for my husband and me.
To be honest, my husband, the curmudgeon, eschews costumes, which are much more than mere folly on this most joyous and raucous of Jewish festivals. Purim celebrates the events described in the Book of Esther--when Persia's King Ahashverosh was persuaded by Queen Esther, a Jew taken to the royal harem against her will, to nullify evil minister Haman's genocidal decree. This is the one scripture where God's name is never mentioned (except in code), which exemplifies the theme of the holiday--the hidden nature of God. In that vein, we wear costumes to hide our external identities, and imbibe alcohol so we internalize the confusion of reality with appearances.
So my husband's reluctance to dress up represents more than mere laziness or embarrassment--it's a small rebellion. Especially when I go to the trouble of creating a costume for him. In the past, he's been more amenable--one notable year when I was about to give birth to our second daughter, I made Mr. and Mrs. Potato Head costumes from burlap bags, cutting out and drawing enormous features from posterboard, and buying him a silly plastic bowler hat. Another year I made us both Zorro costumes; I got t-shirts and bandannas from the Army surplus store when we were bikers. The shirts were black, and read, "Kill 'em all; let God sort 'em out" (I think it was). Somebody asked if he was in the so-and-so military unit, which apparently used that logo.
But for many years now, he won't dress up at all. I go all out, 'natch, looking completely ridiculous in my half yellow-half red jester costume with matching dual-pointed and pom-pom'd hat (I paint my face half red, half yellow, of course). A couple years ago when it was pertinent, I was Martha Stewart, with my apron and toque over a striped prison uniform, ankle bracelet dangling. When Disney was the theme of a Purim seuda we attended (the luncheon that is one of the four Purim mitzvot, ie commandments), I came as Minnie Mouse, with red, white and black polka dot skirt, proper ears with bow, whiskers and tail.
So Purim has quickly returned and once again, I'm faced with the costume dilemma. But yesterday, my daughter texted me with the message, "All my friends decided that (my husband) has to go as Mario, and you should be Princess Peach!" Her friends, evidently, agreed that my husband looks like Mario, with his dark mustache. I know nothing about the Super Mario games, but thanks to Google, I found that all I need to be Princess Peach Toadstool is a poufy pink dress and a tiara.
But after clicking through 158 pages of costumes online, all I found was a too-short, flirty version of Princess Peach, a polyEsther (couldn't resist) number for about $50. I've never bought a costume before and certainly won't (and all my previous home-made attempts fill three huge bags of assorted garb and props). I don't own a pink poufy dress, alas. What to do? Purim's next Monday night and Tuesday! Ideas?