Monday, September 26, 2011

A Burning Issue

Warning: a couple of times a year, I write about something totally trivial and personal. This is one of those times.

I have never been into clothes. Never been into fashion. I do know how to spell “style”, but that’s about how far it goes with me. I remember my dad telling me all throughout high school and college that no boy will even notice me because I dress like a “golanca” – which means … “rogue”, in a way. Back then, I used to wear his (torn, bell-bottom) jeans from when he went to college, so, go figure!

I could not tell you what goes through my head as I pick a shirt or a skirt or a pair of jeans. Well, my first thought is always: “Holy cow! Is that what people pay for cheese cloth?!” But my second thought is: “It won’t fit”! Unlike the majority of women out there, I hate shopping for clothes and shoes, because nothing ever fits. I have no set size. I can wear a 0, a 1, a 3 or a 4, a 5 or a 7, even a 14 or a 16 – depending on what department I shop in: women, petites, juniors, children, etc… I never know!

Unlike my beautiful sister, who knows exactly what’s in fashion now, in Montreal and Paris, and New York and what is a has been already … I have no clue whether denim is in or “so out”, same thing for chenille, velure or polyester. I have people tell me “oh, purple is the color of the summer” (that’s my favorite color), and I smile, thinking: “well, then, this one year I must be in style, ‘cause I have plenty of purple clothes, thank you very much”. But I never know, and fashion has never, ever preoccupied me!

As long as it’s covered and I am comfortable, I am good!

And that’s one of my criteria: money is first – it has to be cheap to buy it; I feel silly investing a lot in clothes and even shoes; comfort is a close second; if I don’t feel comfortable in something, there is no way I’ll buy it. And fashion can wait.

But lately, I have experienced some strange new feeling. I wake up every morning hating my clothes. All of them! They look like solitary little strange soldiers, lined up to torture me every day! I hate them all! Some don’t fit anymore, some are faded, some are so old I am simply bored by them! But for the first time in my life, I actually have some kind of feeling about my clothes!

I asked my husband if people who buy an expensive car for their midlife crisis have always been into cars, or just one day wake up that they want to buy an expensive car, and they just buy it, outta crazy impulse. I feel the same way: I have never been preoccupied by clothes, but all of a sudden, I want to burn all of mine and spend $5000 on a whole new wardrobe and a whole new ‘style’. Well, a style at all, from the previously non existent one!

Yes, ladies and gents, I am having my midlife crisis and mine is about clothes! True to form, as always – I am a late bloomer (to be noticing clothes just now – people usually have these dilemmas when they are teens!) and a precocious one, too (to be having my midlife crisis at 36, I guess) – but here we go … I am a mess! It still doesn’t excite me to go shopping for them, but I actually notice what women wear around me, to get ideas and figure out what in the world to do with myself next. I have no clue where to start. How do people learn about what looks good on them? How do people buy clothes? Really ...

I have not actually burned my clothes as of yet. I have not even thrown at least one t-shirt in a Good Will basket … I am not sure what will happen, really, but I do know I will have to do something soon! Spending 20 minutes in front of my shelves in the closet every morning trying to decide what to wear needs to stop! That time is for snoozing, not for styling! One is so much more becoming of me than the other.

And for my friends and family who read this and are now thinking “oh, I’ll take her shopping and I’ll show her a few things that’ll look cute on her” – STOP! You know me well enough to know the last thing I could be is a puppet! I am pretty lost, but I still can’t take advice benevolently.

This too shall have to be a self-discovery journey. I just hope I remember to burn only after I have gotten some new outfits to replace the old. It, after all, still needs to be covered first!

I know … I am trifling.


A said...

So this is the right time for me to visit you and go for that shopping trip with my sister I have always dreamt about... :-)

A. Wilson said...

Haha. ANY DAY is the perfect time to visit me! As for shopping - yeah, you know how that goes!!! I'll go shopping, but YOU'll be buying. ;) Love you and MISS you!!