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What every entomologist needs…

an awkward ladybug costume.


An assignment to create another Three Wolf Moon shirt? Really? I’m getting GRADED for this? My life could only get better if I’d started my work on Monday like a sane, sensible human being.

I was excitation to give this assignment a try, although initially I wasn’t certain I’d be able to capture the essence of the glorious Three Wolf Moon reviews. There’s something about that sort of spontaneous moment of communal absurdity that’s difficult to recreate, and generally results in a terrible forced meme that never gets off the ground. The stuff that makes great memes great is, in part, their unpredictability, and how organically they arise from the depths of internet subculture.

However, in attempting to find something weird and different to review on Amazon, I found that the majority of obscure items (like unicorn meat, wolf urine and real uranium) already had a plethora of silly reviews attached to them; apparently the three wolf moon shirt spawned not only that one meme, but an entire tradition of leaving ridiculous reviews on odd products. In a similar vein, the mundane items I looked at mostly had at least a few real reviews already, meaning my review would hardly stand out.

At last, I found it. A Halloween costume so dumb and awkward that itneededa stupid review. In keeping with many of the story-reviews I’d read as I trawled through the weird underbelly of, I went with a hyper-serious tone, and even went so far as to use the persona of a scientist to really make the point. The trope of the crazy scientist living with the animals they’re studying is a well-known one, so I had a lot to work with in terms of cultural background. While my review hasn’t generated any other reviews in kind, I have a second review! And possibly a third later on! And folks are seeing it—as of writing this, 11 out of 12 OVER FORTY people found it “helpful.” Granted, that might be due to the fact that it is absolutely because I advertised what I was doing on a knitting forum I frequent that’s full of weird, awesome people who appreciate this kind of thing and who were willing to jump in and help me out (it’s not cheating, it’s generating traffic!).

In case you don’t want to head over to Amazon to view my story in all its absurdity, here’s the text of my review:

Excellent for research! Entomologist approved October 28, 2012

By H
As an entomologist specializing in Coccinellidae, I have been searching for a suitable disguise that would help me conduct up close research on new species of lady beetle that I have discovered. They are a fascinating breed, having established a colony that is similar in structure and function to that of a beehive a termite mound. I had purchased an inferior costume for my first attempt at studying this colony, and the results were unpleasant; apparently able to detect the faults in my disguise, the lady beetles swarmed and began to gnaw on my face. After a brief recovery period, however, I was determined to find a better costume and try again.This costume proved nearly faultless, and has served my needs admirably. I had to sew on an extra pair of legs and supply my own black unitard beneath the ensemble to complete the look, as well as modifying the wings so they sat beneath its outer shell, but otherwise its sturdy construction bright coloration, perfectly mimicking the iconic red elytra of the Coccinellidae, were just what I needed. I chose this costume over the others advertised on this website because the spots it boasts are more proportional to the garment’s overall size; others I looked into tended to present in a smaller polka dot pattern, which may have been the fatal flaw in my first disguise.I write this now from the outer limits of the Coccinellidae colony. They have accepted me into their ranks, and I have begun living as they do, setting out each morning before dawn to collect aphids and other scale insects for more sedentary colony members. Their behavior is utterly unprecedented, and seems almost intelligent. Soon I hope to catch a glimpse of the center of their colony, possibly a queen-beetle of some sort. I live in hope, and all thanks to this excellent costume.

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