B is for The Bowler

This post is part of the 2016 A-Z Challenge and I am looking forward to posting something new every day in April.

Just is case you thought that this was going to be a month full of insightful, introspective thoughts on my part, let me put your mind at ease by talking about a character from the movie Mystery Men.*

Sci-Fi on the Rock starts today and I don’t know how cons work in other cities but this is our biggest one and it is not limited to Sci-Fi characters, people dress up as all kinds of different characters from books and movies and comics and shows. As you may know from last year, I’ll use just about any excuse to wear a costume somewhere so I always look forward to creating something for SFOTR.

Aside: I don’t think I could rightfully call what I do cosplaying though because that implies an attention to detail and a level of commitment that I don’t quite have. I really respect how cosplayers labour over their costumes to get things JUST right and how they try to source specific materials and the like so I won’t call my approach cosplaying. Mine is much more ‘head to the thrift shop and then get other pieces from the dollar store and that’s good enough’ – for me the fun is in the invention and getting the spirit of the costume rather than focusing on every specific part. Most of the cosplayers I know find joy in the details but that would suck the fun right out of it for me. I only add details until it starts getting on my nerves.

ANYWAY, on to the topic of the day THE BOWLER!

Determination for the win!

Determination for the win!

The Bowler is a character played by Janeane Garofalo in Mystery Men. She’s a former grad student who is avenging her father Carmine’s death so she joins Mr. Furious’ team of ‘ragtag’ superheroes to fight Casanova Frankenstein’s evil plans. I like how snarky she is and I love Janeane Garofalo and her costume allows her to be fully dressed** and still be kick-ass, so it’s perfect for me.

I bought myself a black wig and green hair extensions, and a corduroy jacket and made myself a few patches out of felt. The challenge was in making her bowling ball with her Dad’s skull in it. We are exactly at the wrong time of year to buy clear plastic balls or beach balls and there isn’t a foam skull to be found anywhere.

Half-assed jacket and skull ball in bag. Good enough? Yep, good enough!

Half-assed jacket and skull ball in bag. Good enough? Yep, good enough!

I was not up for the level of construction/crafting required to use a mould  (and time was limited) so I ended up buying two ‘frost domes’ for flowers and trimming them to make a sort of ball shaped thing, and the ‘skull’ inside is a skull mask around a balloon. This is where being a half-assed costumer comes in handy – I didn’t have to make it perfect, I just had to get close enough for me. And I did. See?

So I will be stomping around the event this afternoon in my good enough costume, having a grand time with my kids. (They are dressing up as Sans and Temmie from Undertale, in case you were wondering. We also half-assed their costumes.)

Aside: I decided to dress as this character ages ago but I was afraid I would forget what I had decided, so I put it in my calendar for sometime in February ‘Be The Bowler for SciFi’. Then, I promptly forgot about it. When the reminder popped up I was totally baffled because I had forgotten the reference. I was trying to figure out if I had agreed to be part of a bowling fundraiser or something (a bad idea, I am terrible at bowling), I just about knocked myself out with the facepalm once I figured it out.

So I am off to SFOTR and my other Saturday adventures shortly but I am curious about two things.

1) Do you like to dress up for stuff? Are you a full-on cosplayer or do you half-ass it like me?

2) How do you decide when something is good enough? Do you start with an intention for what is good enough or do you just stop when you get tired of your plan?

*Yes, this is what I am like in real life, too – One minute I am pondering the nature of existence, the next I am wondering how Black Widow can kick so high in leather pants. I think she must spend a lot of time breaking the leather in – perhaps she has people to kick specifically for the purpose of breaking in her leathers.
**That is in NO way a judgment on people who dress in teensy costumes, your body is your body and you can cover it as much or as little as you want to. And I will kick the ass of anyone who tries to harass you because of how you dress. For me, personally, it’s about my sense of what is public versus what is private in my own life, everyone has to make those divisions for themselves.

One thought on “B is for The Bowler

  1. The Bowler is such a great character (in a great movie) and that was a genius costume. And as for half-assing it, I now have a student who repeats back to me (when she says she did a half-assed job on an assignment) “Half-assed is better than no ass at all,” because I’ve told her that so many times.

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