Friday, September 4, 2015

Would Clint Eastwood Make a Movie About Clothes?

              As you know I pride myself in always looking my best regardless of the circumstances.  I have stuck to this mantra until very recently and under extreme circumstances.  Anyone who moves to Southern California and questions the lack of central air in most homes and apartments is told, in a ridiculously condescending manner, “It doesn’t get humid enough to need air conditioning.”  Lies!  Lies and vicious rumors!!  These past few weeks have been New Orleans humid and Mississippi hot and I am not happy about it.  Homophobia is only 30% of why I left the South; the other 70% was attempting to escape the humidity and that whole ‘gravy as a beverage’ lifestyle.  I was fat, y’all. 

                Due to this unfortunate weather change, I have resorted to wearing shorts and polos each weekend, except at church.  I am all about inclusivity at church, but I would rather not see the knees and toes of my fellow worshippers, some of whom appear capable of climbing trees like a sloth.  And I am referring to the animal, not the deadly sin.  I don’t like my toes, much less anyone else’s but I feel I should give a shout out to the women who keep their toes ‘did’. 

                This change in my wardrobe and my Bible Study ‘homework’ of being less focused on ‘things’, has me dressing more like the average person and while I am dealing with those issues, it has started to impact my life in unexpected ways.  I have shared with y’all how I am treated when I am dressed in my normal manner and there are many upsides to it; however, there were downsides as well and I never realized it until I became much more relaxed in my wardrobe choices.  I will share with you forthwith:

The Good:

  1. I always get better service while shopping.
  2. Strangers often ask me for fashion advice.  Sometimes I offer my advice if I feel they need it, either to give a vote of confidence to someone unsure of their new look or to avert a disaster in the making.
  3. I have been offered an interior designer’s discount while shopping for home furnishings at places like West Elm.
  4. More than 20 years after graduation I am still consulted by friends and fraternity brothers on wardrobe questions and I gladly offer my advice.  I appreciate the fact they care enough to ask.
  5. People have told me a compliment from me means more to them than one from someone less, shall we say, fashion forward.

The Bad:

  1. Upon my initial visit to any new doctor’s office, the staff thinks I am a drug rep, and one without snacks, so I am not necessarily greeted in a timely manner.
  2. If I wear my fire engine red chinos to Target I am mistaken for a manager.  I’ve stopped correcting the shoppers who stop me and simply answer their questions or take them to the appropriate aisle or hand them off to customer service.  I guess I’m a Target volunteer at this point.
  3. If I go directly to a mall after work wearing my suit, I am mistaken for a jewelry store employee, which is either an insult or a compliment depending on the jewelry store.  Tiffany’s, I’ll take.  Zale’s, not so much.
  4. If I go to Starbucks directly from work, without my suit jacket but still wearing my tie, I am often mistaken for a bank employee and was once caught up in a Wells Fargo/Bank of America shouting match in the parking lot of a Starbucks. 

The Ugly:

  1. Many people assume I am constantly judging, which is not always the case.  TO be fair I am always judging the sharing of the toes, but otherwise not so much.   To be clear, I am constantly assessing, but I am not always critiquing and I typically share my opinion only when is it is solicited.  I try to never be rude; my mother raised me better than that.
          The moment I can retire these shorts and polos and return to my glory days as a fashion plate, I'll be sure and let you know.  Maybe I'll post photos.  And that is all I'm saying for now.

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