Most people in the world already think cyclists live in a perpetual state of Halloween, dressing in crazy skin-tight costumes, often simulating their heroes, and parading around town. Of course, those people just have not embraced the glorious feel of spandex.
Halloween represents the time of year when anyone can break out the neon colored bike armor and appear ..."normal." From that vintage Team Z kit of the Greg Lemond years to the shredded denim and flannel of Gary Fisher biking on the slopes of Mt. Tamalpais, the cycling-based costume options are endless.
For those of you looking for some inspiration, here are five dress-ups to get one through the trick-or-treating in two-wheeled glory.
The Obvious - Be a Cutter
5. Breaking Away is the seminal cycling movie and the home made kit the local kids, the Cutters, wore in the climactic is as basic and easy as it comes. Grab a white T-shirt emblazoned with "CUTTERS" in bold black block letters across the chest (marker will do, but iron-on letters lend authenticity), some high riding black shorts and an old, red dome cover of a bike helmet.
Prove you're a real fan and add some generic blue/grey work gloves with the fingers cut off to be Cyril (played by Daniel Stern).
4. The Obscure - Juan Pelota
Lance Armstrong's bout with testicular cancer has been well documented. What is not quite as well known is the identity of his alter ego, Juan Pelota. Do a little liberal Spanish to English translation and you'll get the reference. This mysterious marauder of a bike pirate moves freely across the globe, leaving behind spanglish tweets as indicators of his adventures.
Alas, no photos exist of Señor Pelota, so some improvisation is needed for a costume. Start with a basic big red or pink ball costume for the torso (extra points for veins) with some cycling shorts down below. Cover up with a serape complete with No. 1 racing number on the back, moustache and cycling cap and you're good to go.
3. The Fan - The Devil
There's always a hundred different takes on devil costumes each Halloween, so why not go with the craziest German around, Didi Senft.
Anyone who's seen a stage of the Tour de France knows this guy. He dresses as the devil (complete with sponsorship logos) and jumps like mad at the place on a route where the pain is at its worst.
The key to this costume is not the devil outfit so much as the corresponding white beard and Adidas sandals. And to hop like crazy.
2. The Bizarre - Super Mario
During Lance Armstrong's heyday, there was another rider who tore up the roads of Europe, outpaced Lance to race wins by a massive margin, and did with more style and panache than any other sport has ever seen: Mario Cipollini.
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Super Mario was loaded with that great late '90s Euro arrogance and he exuded it especially during the 1999 Tour de France when he set the record for most consecutive stage wins with four. And the dude wore some crazy costumes. But his early exhibition of the BodyWorlds concept remains at the top.
1. The Classic - Not Guilty
This comes from noted cycling blogger, The Fat Cyclist: Dress up in full pro kit (preferably Phonak, team of noted non-druggers Floyd Landis and Tyler Hamilton). Use a marker to draw needle tracks up and down one arm. Tie a length of surgical tubing above one elbow and leave a syringe sticking out of your vein. Wheel around an IV tower for the duration of the party. Stuff your jersey pockets with bottles of drugs.
When anyone asks what / who you are, respond that you are a professional cyclist. When they ask what all the needles and drugs are for, say you have no idea what they're talking about. No matter what, do not admit you have any drug-related items on hand.