I am a fashion disaster.
I am both tall, and wide. This is not a bad thing, as being wide enabled me to bear four children, with minimal physical strain, and I am rather fond of them. Wide, child-bearing hips. A doctor once told me I was a “Percheron”… a Percheron is a work horse, one of those huge ones that haul the beer wagons full of swarthy German Brewmasters over the Alps. Tall, and wide. With big feet. Appealing to heavy beer drinkers.
Tall and wide is fine, but compound that physical mass with a total lack of fashion sense and what you are left with is a middle aged woman standing in the middle of her bedroom, surrounded by a tsunami of discarded garments, with a half an hour to get ready for Parent-Teacher night at school with paint-stained jeans in one hand and her daughter’s ex-boyfriend’s plaid flannel shirt in the other, asking her Weiner, in plaintive tones, “This looks good together, right?”
Even the Weens knows a bad idea when he sees it. “Vy do you not try zee leiderhosen? Nossink vrong vit zee nice leiderhosen.”
How do women do it? Seriously. I’ve been a woman for a long time, and I know a lot of other women. I have friends who are women. I see women on the street. I see them in stores. Wearing clothes. Looking good. Looking effortlessly good.
I have three gorgeous daughters (And one handsome son. I wear his clothes. He doesn’t mind.) and they all know how to dress, so apparently my fashion dysfunction is not hereditary. (My hips are. Sorry, girls.) I beg them to take me shopping, to choose my clothes, to live out their lives in the back of my closet so they can hand me coordinated outfits every morning before I go to work. They decline. Something about adventure and excitement and “living their lives”. I dunno. You’d think, after giving birth to them, that they’d sacrifice themselves on the altar of my vanity. But no.
I am physically incapable of creating outfits that are a) professional, b) attractive, and c) in any other color than black. I wear yoga pants to school. I have more men’s shirts than women’s shirts. As I write this I am wearing men’s pajamas. I do, however, have very nice underwear. Black. (I love Joe Fresh, at the Superstore, undies for, like, three bucks each. Awesome.)
Every morning is a battle in my closet with shirts that don’t match with pants that don’t fit with shoes that pinch with sweaters that sag with nylons that run with ugly, old, baggy, ripped, stained, torn, faded… I put on my yoga pants and a baggy sweater and call it good.
This isn’t normal. I have friends whose watch straps coordinate with their socks. I have friends who regularly wear clothes without paint stains on them. I have a pregnant friend who looks like a supermodel. I have friends who don’t ask their weiner dog for fashion advice.
Do you think that’s the problem?
I don’t know what the solution is, unless we all start wearing uniforms. I would embrace the wearing of school uniforms. For the teachers. I could totally rock a blazer and slacks, as long as that’s all I had to worry about. Blazer. Slacks. Or some kind of smock-like get up. Yes, yes that’s it! Smocks for teachers.
I am going to begin fundraising for Smocks for Teachers, one size fits all, uni-sex, uni-tard. (Uni-tard smocks?) In black, of course.
I might even buy two.