You may have noticed a whole pile of new updates to my HALO costume progress recently. There was a reason, albeit a very frivolous one, for all of the sudden frantic work.
I've been at sea or deployed for the past two Halloweens. Each time I had been planning on wearing the HALO costume, made a bunch of progress toward getting it wearable, and then had to shelf it for months while I was away.
So the other day I was looking around the shop and I decided that there was really no good reason why I don't already have a complete, wearable suit after nearly three years of tinkering with this project in between ships and wars.
Later that day I was driving by the local Game Stop and noticed that they were taking pre-orders for HALO: Reach, the latest game in the series. I stopped in for details and the guy behind the counter explained that because the game was due out on Tuesday the 14th, they would reopen the store on Monday night at 10pm so those folks who'd pre-ordered the game could line up and get their copies at the stroke of midnight.
He went on to explain that they had something over 300 pre-orders so far and that typically there would be somewhere between half and two-thirds of those folks who would show up for the midnight release. This seemed like the right kind of place to go and crowd to witness the debut of this particular project, so I went ahead and pre-ordered a copy of the game.
So after all of the crazy preparations and last-minute scrambling that went into getting dressed for the evening, my sister Rose and my friend AJ wedged me into the passenger seat of Rose's truck and we drove across town. Rose preceded me to the store so she could get this shot of me walking across the parking lot:
The first time someone noticed me it was pretty obvious. That was the guy that yelled out, "Holy shit! Look at that!"
That was a reaction I expected. The next one completely threw me for a loop. As I was walking up to the line, some kid walked up and gave me a hug. Then another six of them did the same thing:
I was not ready for that.
Here's a shot of me inside as I was waiting to get my receipt verified:
And then strolling back outside:
Back outside, all sorts of folks asked to pose for pictures with me:
Including staff members from the store:
Still, since we had an hour to kill, we decided to wander into the supermarket next door for more pictures:
Some were funnier than others:
Some were sort of obvious:
But after a while it was time to go back, get in line:
That's me on the left.
While waiting, I got my picture taken a few more times:
Still, the best picture that was taken all night was this one that my friend AJ snapped:
When all was said and done, I went back to the workshop, pried all of the armor off, and then went over to a friend's house to play my new game.
I had to, you see, because I don't own an XBOX 360.