Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Clothes make the man ...

Yesterday I mentioned that I was clothes-less.

Well, not exactly. I do HAVE clothes and wear them daily. However, when it comes to BOOK FAIR clothing, I come up way short.

The thing is, I spend most of my days lifting books, or boxes of books, or trawling around in places that HAVE books (thrift stores, someone's garage, other bookstores, etc.) and for the most part, it's dirty work. Wearing heels is NOT recommended. Besides, I tossed my heels years ago after my sons were born. They always hurt my feet anyway and it would have taken 6" + heels to make me tall enough to make a difference, so why bother at all.

And, when the boys were little, wearing good clothes was entirely wasteful and annoying. Cotton is king when it comes to spit up, poop, pee (remember, these are boys), sand, dirt, mud... you name it, I lived with smears of it on me on a daily, if not hourly basis. One gets inured to all sorts of smells and curious blotches on clothing and body parts.

I also gave up jewelry (except for the rings which are truly permanently attached (they shrank -- that's my line and I'm sticking to it -- the rings shrank. My fingers did NOT grow fatter around the knuckles!) because having one earring yanked forcefully and damagingly out of my ear (and having my favorite pair of Christmas earrings pulled apart by an eighteen month old) taught me right quick. Finally, about three years ago I started putting my earrings on again -- but I still forget somedays. And necklaces tend to weigh me down and drag uncomfortably at my neck so I wear them, but never easily.

Which all means, in as round-about fashion as you can get, that much of my clothing is easy wear stuff. NOT polyester, mind you. And I balk at sweatsuit outfits, even the really expensive combos that people use on their way to and from the gym if they have class.

Mostly I wear jeans and decent shirts. When I'm feeling well (as in not dead tired and dragging around) I try for clean, neat oxford style shirts with the jeans. If I'm doing scout stuff that could potentially be dirty I wear scout tee shirts. The same goes for soccer / baseball games or practice.

Besides, right now, by lunchtime most days, it's nearing 100 degrees (F) and wearing full battle gear is excessive unless you're expected to be somewhere inside with air conditioning.

All of which leaves me far short in the good clothing department for Book Fairs. Of course, there's a range of clothing necessities for different fairs. One wears different gear one in Grass Valley that is ALWAYS when it's 105 in the shade vs the cool, air conditioned, classy, high class environs of San Francisco. Santa Monica falls somewhere in between. Sacramento tends towards the Grass Valley casual.

Even so, I always feel as if what I'm wearing is just NOT RIGHT. Maybe it's because I look at the clothes others are wearing and compare them to my own. Maybe its because I know that people are actually looking at ME, not just the books. Maybe I'm PARANOID... or feeling extraordinarily self-conscious.

Who knows.

All I know is that this year, I really don't have time to spend hours dragging my sorry feet around the Malls looking for something, much less do I want to pay for something that I only use occasionally -- and EACH TIME I NEED SOMETHING DIFFERENT!

So this year, I ordered a couple of new oxford style shirts from Lands End, checked to see if I had a decent pair of jeans to wear (no holes, no sagging spots, etc) and that's what I'm going to wear.

AND I'm going to have on my sneakers. They are somewhat sparkly, but they sure need a cleaning after wearing them for the weeks of scout camp. The thing is, this year I have an excuse for the casual footwear -- my back would not TAKE wearing something complicated or without support.

So there.

As for the clothes. Well I've decided that this leopard (actually lion if you go by astrology) can't easily change it's spots -- so the real me will have to do.

I WILL, however, be wearing my earrings and they will be my best set.

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