Putting the Black Hat On (Just for Halloween!)

First off, let me tell you, we do not really have Halloween here. Halloween was just more of a Western idea that we often saw in American movies and TV shows. I say “was” because in the past decade, more or less, Filipinos have begun adhering to the Western practice of having Halloween parties, donning costumes and letting kids go trick-or-treatin’ within their neighborhoods, sometimes even in malls (it’s become a commercial thing now, too). In some areas, they have taken to having monster parades, no matter how silly the costumes are sometimes.

Halloween is still not a widely practiced new tradition for reasons I really don’t need to mention for now, but it has become such to others. It wasn’t a tradition that most of us grew up observing. What we really observe are All Saints Day and All Souls Day on November 1st and 2nd respectively. We go back to our hometowns and provinces to flock the cemeteries and visit the dead. In some ways, it has become a sort of annual reunion for families.

I am not really going to talk about tradition, not right now. I just thought I’d give you a little background on how it really is here.

Our office did have our own li’l Halloween fun. Our branch did not really have Halloween parties before, but we did begin having contests (although most would rather participate in the Christmas celebrations instead). I won in one (in 2012, yay!!!), at least in the office, and last year was extra fun for all of us!

This year’s theme was “Techie,” or “Internet-related.” It was up to us what to do so, still in keeping with the occasion, I came up with my costume and called it…

The Black Hatter

black-hat

HALLOWEEN 2014! Theme: Techie. I came as “Black Hatter” or a black hat hacker, out to steal your passwords, personal/private information (credit, bank, AdSense account), hijack emails and YouTube, cheat Google Panda and Penguin, and basically wreak havoc, unleashing viruses, worms, bugs…MALWARE MAYHEM!!!!

What is The Black Hatter? S/he is one who does what is termed as black hat SEO practices, also often a bad hacker. To know more, well, it’s very Goog-able (he he…I came up with that one first, okay?). Or you can read the image caption above for an idea, at least. Also, the caption explains the whole look.

BY THE WAY, this in NO WAY means I do black hat, alright? I don’t even have the know-how to do those! This was just for cosplaying purposes.

Let me just say I poured my heart and soul in creating this look (the mention of heart and soul makes it more Halloween-y, don’t you think? he he). The cost was very minimal because I only bought two inexpensive materials — the rest were already available. I did spend many hours in the evenings drawing and painting and basically coming up with appropriate props.

hacker-at-work

What’s a hacker without a computer? In this case, it’s a tablet keypad to serve as laptop

virus-worm

So those were supposed to be a virus and a worm. Had to keep the gummy worms in the fridge for days before I attached them to the jacket and hoped the ants wouldn’t get to them first — they didn’t. HA!

 

malware-bug

I suddenly got inspired and made two of this bug

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Your GMail, compromised

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Death to Yahoo!

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DisLIKE-ing Facebook

 

 

 

 

 

As additional and important props, I carried a stick from which hung representations of those that a black hatter hits and/or ruins — browsers, search engines, Emails and social media (above are just some of them). It was not only to show the extent of what a black hatter can do, but also to emphasize how hackers like to brag about their conquests.

Oh, and for sure you noticed that red (supposedly a shade of orange) thingy on the front of my jacket. I specifically searched for the icon for malware and found it. It did kind of remind me of something but I dismissed the idea until one said, “I know you’re supposed to be Black Hat but why do you have Naruto‘s mangekyou sharingan there?”

naruto-mangekyou-sharingan

Various sharingan “designs,”from the popular mangaNaruto

Uh…oh. Alarm bells went off in my head and I thought, I KNEW it was a sharingan! But why did Google give it? Thankfully, two peeps said it was the icon for “biohazard.” Well, after careful research, I have concluded that no, it’s not a sharingan, and it’s not 100% exactly the same as the biohazard icon, although we know where the inspiration for it came from.

After all the thinking and effort, I didn’t win, HA HA HAAAA!!!!!!!!!!! Anyway, I enjoyed it. Below are more pics from our itty-bitty party 🙂

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Instagram Sadako. Great idea by Jane C.

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Real-life sweethearts, Count Yahoo! Messenger and the Dancing SnapChat (maybe she’ll let us see her little dance)…Cutie-much!

android-costume

Android E. has lost his screws!

Basketball-ing kitty? Nope. Just Firefox hugging the world

Basketball-ing kitty? Nope. Just Mr. Firefox hugging the world

internet-explorer

Doro the Internet Explorer: The new creepy

office-ghost

Speaking of creepy…..!!!!

all-browsers

Well, Safari got lost (broken compass, maybe), but here are your browsers: Doro the IE  who is perennially behind, Chrome Mama (THE WINNER because everybody just wanted to wear the costume, he he), Mr. Firefox, and Opera Diva

hashtag

Hashtag Lady says she doesn’t have a costume every year, then she whips out one #indenial

hashtag-all

Being a very flexible icon, the hashtag is paired everywhere. Here, a smiling Sadako is forced–er–asked to be the Hashtag model #tree. The list continues with #van, #trashcan, #bike, #person, #yougettheidea

costume-improv

Costume failed but this one joins the party anyway

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He’s getting made up impromptu #nocostume

google-chrome

How bitter is this mini-Chrome when he comes in to find a giant Chrome? LOL!!!

monster-mold

No costume, too, but don’t you just like his art?

halloween-costumes

Preparing for the Annual Walk. It’s not the same without the Annual Walk

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Group shot! Too bad Mr. Firefox left early. 😉 Oh, and introducing Ms. C-Prompt sitting at far right

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Wacky Techies!

 

Photos courtesy of the office peeps so please do not distribute…Just feel free to link back to here, if ever.

 

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Do you have any pics or stories to share from last Halloween? Share to us! We’d like to see what you’ve been up to 😉

Zombie-fied!!!

News are too sad lately so I thought I’d share something fun, just to lighten up the mood a bit.

Well, our company had a Halloween contest. In the past, people who wanted to participate could wear their costumes and the judge, The Big Boss, would decide on who won based on the criteria for that year. This year, things changed. This time, it would be a group effort, a branch vs. branch contest. The requirement was for each branch to come up with a theme and create a three-minute video based on the criteria. Naturally, all branches exceeded the maximum allowed time. Yeah, we are very disciplined and follow rules 😉

Check out our costumes:

plants-vs-zombies-cosplay

Obviously, we were too few to feature as many plants and zombies, but I still think it worked out well, win or lose 🙂

To state the obvious, our team decided to do a Plants vs. Zombies thing. The girls outnumbered the guys so we (girls) were assigned the zombie roles. Some girls were really just too shy that they declined to participate (it’s not compulsary, but just for fun), and the numbers became even.

Anyway, we each had chosen our zombie and plant. I chose to be DJ Zom-B ’cause he sounded fun to do, I also like hats, he’s got a high toughness rate, and he has nine degrades, kind of like nine lives. Also, I wanted to challenge myself with the costume a bit. I honestly have never in my life played the game yet but I knew about it.

dj-zom-b-pvz

DJ Zom-B adds a Jake the Adventurer hat to his collection, striking a pose with the requisite peace sign…Sheesh.

For the zombie heads, we got our general idea from a post from the Glamorous Gamer Girls blog. We got empty carton boxes that had been stocked until then, got a general head circumference measurement, drew the mouths, cut out the “insides” of the mouths to leave some teeth, and then paper mached the head masks. We didn’t include the eyes yet so we could paint easier.  The guys were really so nice to help out the girls.

From there, we worked on our own in-between breaks, although sometimes we helped others out. Every girl worked on the eyes the way she wanted to, with some girls simply gluing the balls on the head masks while others cut holes instead to push the eyes in a bit. One thought of putting tissue and painting it around the eyes to cover the gaps. I followed her example and even added eyelids. Why DJ Zom-B’s eyes are kind of misplaced was due to a mistake I made, but I am happy it actually added character (LOL!!!). Why not? Zombies are supposed to be decaying!

I could have done better with the hats but I had to make do with the resources and we were pressed for time. I only made three hats or I would have not been able to move. They were light enough but not so much if you’re wearing a big head mask as well. Have to admit, the top one looked different because I didn’t want to rid of my drawn image of Griever  (the winged lion image from Final Fantasy, found stenciled on Squall Leonhart‘s gunblade) from the cosplay two Christmases ago.

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The DJ Zom-B model

Meanwhile, I did what I could with the whole costume. Did not realize sooner that DJ Zom-B was supposed to be wearing a sleeveless top but I didn’t want to do a lot of body painting (the other girls weren’t going to paint themselves either, I found out later) so I wore a green long-sleeved thing to serve as “bare” arms and painted my white gloves green to serve as hands. I did what I could, too, for the bling-blings.

The guys did well with their totally bad*** plant costumes. They did their own paper maches. Everyone agrees that the Bonk Choy costume was da bonk! I mean, the bomb! Next on my bests list would be the Jalapeno, so cool!

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DJ Zom-B and Swashbuckler Zombie corner Bonk Choy…Uh-oh

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Meet my boyfriend ;D

The plan for the video was a fake trailer for the supposed film version of the game. We had such a hilarious time doing the shoots, then taking “selfies” and photo-bombings in-between takes, as you can see above. That was in the evening. Earlier at lunch, some zombies and plants walked the streets to find brains…er, food.

And now, here is our cute video with something extra at the end. With apologies to Universal Pictures; no copyright infringement intended as the idea was to present a fake movie trailer and there was a need to be authentic-looking enough…ENJOY!!!