The “Too Soon” Costume Equation

Nope. It’s Halloween: Everything is fall-flavored, the booze is mixed with candy, and we make obligatory Mean Girls references about the sensibilities of our costumes. You’re about to head out for the night when you think to yourself, “Wait, should I really be wearing this?”

No, it’s not your skimpy, slutty nurse outfit (that’s mine, thank you very much): It’s your questionably PC costume. Political scandal, natural disasters, celebrities after a glorious and messy downward spiral of heroin—these and slutty outfits make up the (pumpkin) bread and butter of Halloween.

But what’s too far? If you’re like me and really bad at making good choices always when drunk, we here at BlogDH have got you covered. In a completely scientific and rigorous process, we’ve come up with a nifty formula to determine whether your Dalai-Lama-saying-“Fuck-It” is indeed too soon (don’t worry: it’s not).

Behold, the “Too Soon” Acceptability Equation:

No, reading this does not count as math homework.

Where insensitivity, cleverness, and fame are measured on a scale from 1-10, and horribleness being measured from 1-100.

Let’s give this formula a good old try. Here are some examples of calculations to help you determine where your costume falls on the social acceptability scale:

Bonus too-soon points if you say "Wanna see a magic trick?" and then OD.

Jesus: 18,294

Oh, this could be problematic. We might not be the most pious bunch here, but offending a cultural and spiritual icon of the world’s largest religion might send off a few -ism alarms. Plus, trying to dance with arms outspread is really hard.

Calculating this was hard. He did die for all of us, so technically are there infinite victims?

The Titanic: 2414

I think this makes a good bound for the upper limit of acceptability. On one hand, it was the gruesome death of hundreds at the hand of classism and hubris. But on the other, it’s been a long while, and a frozen Leo would be awesome.

Heath Ledger: 13.9

Hold on, I know what you’re thinking: How the hell is the Titanic more socially unacceptable than Heath Ledger? Well, let me remind you that you’re reading about a math model on a blog that specializes in free food and photoshopping bear heads.

"They wanna make me go to rehab ..."

Amy Winehouse: 5.01

Because Whitney Houston is so obvious.

Steve Jobs: 4.08

This would actually make a perfect “too soon” costume… except that it’s also just too damn easy. Considering this school probably has a greater than 1 Apple product:student ratio, you’d just be a Brown student wearing a black turtleneck.

Also, a Dobby costume would be the most sexually confusing thing ...

Potato Jesus: 0.68

Why run the risk of being the real Jesus, when you can instead safely make fun of the botched restoration by an amateur octogenarian gone viral? Sometimes He appears as toast, and sometimes He appears as a monkey-potato hybrid. Plus, bonus points for wearing this to a RISD party, for being post-post-post Modern.

Dobby: 3.03 x 10-5

“Here lies Dobby, a free elf.”

Try, just try no to tear up. Singlehandedly the saddest death in the entire movie (yeah, I’m looking at you Fred—I barely sniffled!). Dobby has all the makings of an actually inappropriate “too soon” costume: A brutal death that took place just two years ago, and a demise that’d constitute a hate crime (does Brown have SPEW? I feel like we should).

But then you remember that he’s a fictional character.

Dinosaurs: 3.04×10-8

When it comes to ways of dying, mass global extinction is pretty bad. But seeing as how it’s been a few billion years, I think we could safely say if this isn’t too soon. Clever girl.

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