Hundreds of cat-ear headbands. A few tastefully sexy firefighters. Some less tastefully sexy firefighters, one tiny scrap of fabric away from disaster. Various unclever COVID costumes (hey! What if we did the coronavirus, but like, with corona beer?). Harley Quinn.
But, through that crazed mass of people dancing, “having fun,” making “conversation”—it’s him. A beacon of light in this world of depravity. Dave is not like the others: he has no costume, only a grey t-shirt and jeans. He sits in a corner, wistfully staring at the wall. He holds his drink tightly, like a philosopher clutching tea for warmth as he dreams up his masterpiece.
Just like those intellectuals of old, Dave is misunderstood.
The other partygoers do not appreciate his genius. He is left with no choice but to clutch his drink, longing for a party-less world. He rejects costume culture. He is different, and mysterious, and alluring.
We talked to Dave about his groundbreaking choice of halloween costume. He did not respond at first, as he was too engaged with reciting Beowulf in middle english to a can of white claw. “I was just inspired, I guess,” he said. “Halloween isn’t my thing. Actually, parties aren’t my thing.” He looked around. “It’s so sad, you know, all of these people, and no meaningful connections.”
He pointed to two girls in costume. “Ah, to live in sweet ignorance! Look at them, wearing wigs, but that can never make up for the emptiness in their heads.” He shook his head and started tracing the outline of a stain on the wall.
We were later informed that Dave’s comment was “hurtful” and that “it’s been two months and it was literally just one grade” and to “get over himself and send me this week’s paper.” Dave admitted that the girl was, technically, his tutorial partner, and she had, technically, received a higher grade on their first assignment. “It was stupid, though,” he said. “Just because I said the 19th amendment was unconstitutional doesn’t mean I’m against it. Like, it’s just a thought experiment.”
We didn’t gather any quotes from other partygoers, but we can reasonably fill in the blanks: “I was having fun with my friends,” they would say, “but then I saw Dave… Here I am, wearing a costume, and dancing, when I could be staring at the wall like a true intellectual. He made me realize how childish I am.” Similarly: “Woah, look at Dave. He’s so cool. I want to grab his grey t-shirt and lick that chocolate milk stain right off it.”
It was a brave choice you made, Dave. Not everyone can pull off a t-shirt at a Halloween party. Harley Quinn has nothing on you. Except maybe an active social life.