Tripp Or Treat?

Forget the witches' brooms, clown noses, and monster masks. This year's most popular Halloween costume calls for a blue dress, a beret, and a cigar.

"We thought Titanic costumes would be the big rentals, but it looks like Bill and Monica are winning the race," said Stephen LaLiberte, rental manager at Boston Costume.

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CBS Affiliate KIRO-TV in Seattle reports that party-suuply houses around the country are predicting that Monica garb will be this year's "in" costume.

Eric Rockwell of Seattle-area Champion Costumes says customers already are snapping up brunette wigs and berets.

As impeachment hearings move forward in Washington, stores around the country are fielding requests for costumes of President Clinton, Monica Lewinsky, and Linda Tripp.

"We're getting lots of requests," said Claire Olerich, owner of the Costume Gallery in Derry, N.H., noting customers are disappointed when they can't find masks bearing Lewinsky's likeness.


For the creative reveler, dressing up as a figure from the political sex scandal is easy, especially with the details provided in independent counsel Kenneth Starr's report and from Mr. Clinton's grand jury testimony, broadcast nationally last month.

There are wigs to match some of Lewinsky's oft-changing hairstyles. There are dark-hued berets like the ones she wore in those brief meetings with Clinton, captured on videotape in meet-and-greet receiving lines. And there are the cigars.

"People even want the tie," said Marilynn Wick, owner of the Fort-Lauderdale, Fla.-based chain Costume World, referring to one of the gifts the former White House intern gave the president.