Friday, October 7, 2011
Red(neck) is the new Black
It’s the end of the first month and we’ve settled into somewhat of a routine. I accuse him of being the source of all odd smells and he accuses me of “forgetting where you come from”. Now, I have been accused of many things in my day, some nefarious, some untrue and others quite on the mark. But as someone who is able to recognize a Jim Ed Brown and Helen Cornelius duet from another room, I take exception to that remark.
I may want to forget some of the more redneck aspects of my heritage, like peeing in the yard without shame or the cover of darkness, but as someone who once dressed as Buck Owens for Halloween, I feel I am sufficiently country as to be welcomed at a 4-H meeting, y’all. I mean, I am the former owner/caretaker of a cow, sheep and horse; not necessarily in that order. I have worn Wrangler jeans and cowboy boots, albeit under duress, but I actually bought chukka boots last year, people. Chukka Boots! The fact that they are navy and come with a matching suede belt shouldn’t take any of the shine of my spurs, if you know what I mean.
After being confronted with this information, my father’s terse reply was, “Well, pardon me, Conway Twitty. Did you get your pink pants at the feed store?” Touché, Farmer Brown. Touché, indeed.
And so it goes. I have cooked boiled okra, people. Boiled Okra! But to be fair, I have made him watch Project Runway, which he says he doesn’t like but still manages to vocalize his opinions on which dress looks most “hookerish”. Oddly enough, we usually have similar tastes although I am able to guess which weird-shouldered Barbarella dress the judges will pick, whether I actually like it or not.
I think this sudden interest in fashion stems from his purchase, upon arrival, of a black bowler. He has now decided that he wants to collect hats and has since purchased gray bowler and a brown fedora. He asked me what I thought about his hats. I said I liked them just fine, but that if insisted on wearing them he needed to start dressing in more fashionable attire. As it is he looks like a hillbilly who mugged a British banker in the 1870s. And he agreed! I was rendered speechless and fled to Marshall’s before he could rescind his comment.
Why not TJ Maxx, you ask? Well, I’ll tell you. TJ Maxx and Marshall’s (and Homegoods) are owned by the same company (TJX) but there are distinct differences. TJ Maxx has jewelry, only women’s shoes and more designer labels. Marshall’s has shoes for the entire family, no jewelry department and Big & Tall Menswear.
In my frenzy, I purchased an additional pair of khakis (he now has two) and a blue plaid button-down. Gingham is the new black. You heard it here first.
Of course, he hasn’t actually worn the shirt yet, but I’m holding out hope, y’all. I have made it my duty to make the world a better-dressed place one person at a time. I guess I should have picked a less complex pupil for my latest project. But fear not. Those huge, yeti-like feet will be encased in coordinated socks by the end of the year. I mean, he can’t see his feet so he wouldn’t know anyway, right?
Stealth fashion seems to be the best bet for this redneck redo. I’ll be like a Navy Seal of fashion, without the guns or camouflage make-up or the combat. Okay, maybe not a Navy Seal. Maybe just a navy-jacketed style coach for those who wear overalls. I’ll do whatever I need to do, as long as I’m cute, not sweaty and get a free pass for being judgmental. You pickin’ up what I’m throwin’ down?