Old Wives' Tales
Radio & TV
Toxin du jour
Legend: Woman seduces her husband at Halloween party, then finds out he switched costumes with someone else.
Example: [Reader's Digest, 1988]
Origins: No matter how many times this one is passed off as a recent tale, nothing will change the fact that this joke-cum-legend is at least 40 years old. A 1965 joke book included a version involving a headachy wife who slips out of a costume party, switches outfits at home, then returns to the country club dance where she'd left her husband. She spots a figure wearing her husband's costume, and a bit of dancing and wickedly persuasive moonlight leads to her romancing its wearer in the back seat of a parked car. They part, and (as in all other versions of this tale), she arrives home before her husband does. When she asks her hubby how his night was, his description of the evening has him trading places with the bartender, a dour fellow who had previously complained about never having the opportunity to get in on the usual ribald Halloween party fun.
This legend is a neat reverse twist on the typical mistaken identity legend in which an unsuspecting
Proof that you can't keep a good story down are recent appearances of this tale told as true, first-person accounts. The following comes from a 1998 issue of Cosmopolitan magazine:
One night, my date and I were at a costume party. He dressed up as the Phantom of the Opera, and I went as a devil. During the party, I saw him go to the bedroom with another woman. When I saw him leave the bedroom to go to the bathroom, I went to the bedroom, told the woman my situation, and took her place. Since the room was dark, my date was not aware of the change, and we ended up having sex. While we were having sex, he started screaming the other woman's name. When I heard this, I smacked him. After he flipped on the lights, I found out that I had been with the wrong Phantom!This version, which adds a touch of incest to the mix, was published in Playboy magazine in 2004:
— Gabrielle, 24
A married couple was invited to a masked Halloween ball. On the night of the party, the wife had a headache and told her husband to go to the event alone.Last updated: 27 October 2005
"Really?" she said. You didn't meet anyone interesting?"
He replied, "I didn't talk to anyone new. When I got there, I saw the guys and we went into the spare room and played poker all night."
She said, "You must have looked really silly wearing your bear costume playing poker."
Her husband replied, "Actually, I gave my costume to my dad. He apparently had the night of his life."
This material may not be reproduced without permission.
snopes and the snopes.com logo are registered service marks of snopes.com.
Also told in: