Category Archives: Fashion
You Should Call Them “Fun to Laugh at People Who Think They’re Ever Going To Save Money With These” Cards
I am beginning to hate shopping. Actually, I still like shopping; it’s the purchasing part that I’ve come to dread. Lately, it’s feeling more and more like I’m subjecting myself to a final exam every time I walk up to the cash register – and not only didn’t I study for it, but I slept through every lecture.
“May I have your phone number?”
“I don’t give that out.”
“Well, do you receive our offers by mail?”
“Yes.” (No, I don’t. But I don’t want you to ask me for my address.)
“Because it’s all tied in to your phone number.”
“I don’t give that out.”
She eyes me suspiciously. “Okay, well do you have the Fun Cards we gave you last time?”
“No, I thought I couldn’t use them today because you’re having a sale.”
“Oh, you can’t. I was just asking.” Uh huh. You were trying to trick me into trying to use them. But I can’t use them anyway. Not only because you are having a sale, but because they are expired – and I lost them anyway.
“So, is this all together?”
“No, my daughter is paying for that pile, and I am paying for the one that I am holding and haven’t put on the counter yet.”
“Well, we could do them both together.”
“I kind of separated them for a reason.” I don’t want to do them all together. But I guess that’s not the right answer either…
“That’s okay. I can ring them all up at the same time.”
“But she is paying with cash, and I am paying with my debit card.”
“That’s okay. We can still do them together. It’s no problem, really.”
So my daughter and I (and the three people standing behind me) wait, while she uses a calculator to figure out how much my daughter’s share is, then rings up mine, and uses a calculator to figure out what my
grade share is. After cash is handed over, change is returned, debit card is swiped, and receipt is signed, our purchase is finally bagged.
“There! Now, you’ve earned 100,000,000 dollars in Fun Cards and you can use them starting April 1st. You can even use them together.”
“Thank you. I will put these in my wallet, and I will be sure, on April Fool’s Day, to make a special trip to your store so I can buy an entire wardrobe of inappropriate attire for my daughter.”
“Thank you for shopping with us.”
Thank you for taking the joy out of my day and making the people behind me hate me for taking so long.
“Mom, now let’s go to Bath and Body Works! We can use those coupons you threw away in the garbage and I fished out.”
Just in case my last post did not lead you to the obvious conclusion that mustaches are “in”, allow me to assure you that this is, indeed, a fashion trend that has caught on fire – at least among the tween girls of the suburbs of San Antonio, Texas. If you are a tween boy, it is less chic, but completely acceptable to sport a handlebar if you happen to be in the company of tween girls.
It is quite possible that just about every picture that I have taken of my daughter in the last 6 months has portrayed her wearing a mustache. Of course, I cannot verify this information, as my computer crashed last weekend and I do not have any pictures that I have taken of my daughter in the last 6 months. So, Fashion Tip #1 is: “Do not let your mother be the only one in possession of your mustache pictures.”
In other news:
In the interest of trying to eke some fashionable outfits of the items that are already hanging in my closet (and trying to procrastinate mourning over my dead hard drive), I decided to clean out the aforementioned wardrobe repository so that I could actually find garments that are suitable for this year’s season. Although I did not find any mustache-embellished blouses, I did find several frocks that I had neglected until now, and would certainly be acceptably modish if worn by a fashion model in a catalogue. Unfortunately, they will be draping my figure, instead, but such is the fate of clothing bought off the rack in discount stores.
I also found some distinctly unsatisfactory pieces that, frankly, I am pretty convinced some Pompous Pixie of Personal Attire stuffed into my closet so she could laugh heartily if I ever dared to wear them in public. Those quickly got thrown in the Clothing Donation pile.
The result of this afternoon of closet cleaning was that my clothes now have room on the poles, and are no longer tightly clinging to hangers in clumps that I cannot slide along the poles.
Which leads me to my black eye.
I was grabbing a fashionable fuschia sweater off a hanger, rushing to chauffeur my daughter to yet another practice, this afternoon. In my old closet, the hanger would have been forcibly held back by its two neighbors while the sweater would likely have ripped and then raced toward me like a sailor who’s just gotten off a 10 month tour.
However, in the new, improved closet, the hanger reeled back, and with no restraints whatsoever from its companions, let ‘er rip quite forcibly into my right eye. Kind of like the way the wife of the sailor who was running toward his lover would probably have delivered justice to the hussy sneaking around with her man.
So, Fashion Tip #2: Do not clean out your closet. And if you do, expect repercussions.
According to my title, which looks a bit blurry through my swollen right eye, I should be handing out at least one more fashion tip.
Fashion Tip #3: If you are a 40ish woman who is trying to distract people from looking at her black eye, go to the local skating rink, purchase a mustache from the vending machine for 75 cents, and affix it to your face. You can put it wherever you want, as the purpose is to distract, not conform. Although, I would suggest that creating a monobrow would just bring more attention to your black eye.
Who knows, though – you might just start the next trend.
Before you read on, in my defense, I would just like to say that trying to fight depression during the Christmas season, especially when you are a teacher, takes Herculean strength and not a few brain cells. Plus, I was a bit pre-occupied with the world ending and a few other things.
One more party. Last night, we had one last Christmas party to attend. And I was so looking forward to being done with them all.
The entire Firepants family was invited to this one. I had inconveniently scheduled a hair appointment right before the party, but I had planned ahead to make sure we could head over there as soon as I was done. White Elephant gift bought and wrapped. Dessert prepared. Address Google mapped.
Before my appointment, I reminded Dimples that she needed to find a “dress-up” outfit and something to use to roast marshmallows before I returned home.
(If you are new to my blog, I must inform you that I have an overactive Dorfenbergerthalamus that overheats and explodes if I am late to anything. This may seem random, but it’s a pertinent fact.)
I arrived home 40 minutes before the party.
“Dimples, do you have your dress-up outfit chosen?”
“I thi-in-n-k so.” This took 5 minutes to sort out.
“What about the marshmallow roasters?”
“No. I told Daddy, but he hasn’t found anything yet.”
I strode to the pantry and grabbed some barbecue forks.
“O.K. It’s going to take about 15 minutes to get there. Is everyone going to be ready to leave in 10 minutes?”
Cap’n Firepants spoke up. “Yes, I’ll probably be ready. But we’re going to need to stop on the way to pick up some beer.”
“What?!!!!!!!!! You’ve been home for 2 and a half hours. Why didn’t you get beer earlier?”
“What was I supposed to do, take Dimples with me to pick up beer?”
“So, now you are going to take all of us to pick up beer?!”
5 minutes later – “Oh, I forgot I had some beer. So, we don’t need to stop for it.”
“Thank God!” This was not sarcasm. I was truly appreciative that we would not lose minutes picking up beer. My Dorfenbergerthalamus was beginning to smoke.
5 minutes later – “O.K., everyone. Let’s go.”
Wonderbutt is coaxed into the Kitchen Corral. Mrs. P.I.B. gives us the panicked look she gives every time we leave. Armed with our required and optional party supplies, the Firepants family exits stage right.
10 minutes later, as we are flying past the airport, a sudden realization hits.
“Oh, crap. I forgot the White Elephant gift!” I exclaim.
To his credit, Cap’n Firepants, instead of letting the expletives fly, says, “Do you want me to turn around?”
I won’t list all of the options that rattled through my brain, but they included stopping at a convenience store and grabbing a can of Pringles or wrapping up the marshmallow forks in a car mat.
“Yes-s-s,” I reluctantly whisper as I sink deep into the seat and wait for my Dorfenbergerthalamus to go nuclear.
“Don’t worry, Mommy,” Dimples assures me from the back seat. “According to my Girls’ Book of Glamour, it’s best to be fashionably late to a party. Twenty minutes is ideal.”
Yeah, tell that to my Dorfenbergerthalamus…
Despite all of my Googling expertise, the pile of things that I just don’t understand keeps getting higher. I am pretty sure that I know less now than I did when I was 10. I mean, back then, I actually had to hold on to information for lengthy periods for pop quizzes and exams. Now, I discard any facts that are not vital to my present survival.
Today’s list of things I don’t understand:
- Why large things that protrude from your head are more appealing than small, unobtrusive things that can be covered by a fashionable hair style. Every time she sees my husband, Cap’n Firepants, our elderly friend, MILlie, complains to him that her stereo headphones will not work. He explains that the end needs to actually be plugged into something that makes sound – instead of dangling down her back. She says that she does not want to plug them into something; she just wants to walk around with them on, so they will help her hear better. (I tried to get her fitted for a hearing aid last year, but she refuses to wear one.)
- Why my husband insists on being loyal to a car-maker (let’s just call them “Frod”) who keeps selling him cars with transmission problems. After he got stranded, and they finally admitted there might be an issue (despite the fact that he brought it in 3 times before and there was “nothing wrong”), and then they proceeded to keep it for a week without offering him a rental car, I asked him if he still planned to go back there for his next car. “Well, they did fix it,” he stated.
- Why Google cannot help me find someone to help me fix my husband. Not that kind of fix. Just fix his blind allegiance to an automobile manufacturer who has not once returned the favor.
- Why I keep shoes in my closet that are agonizingly painful to wear, then forget the damage they did to my foot the last time I wore them, then stupidly choose to wear them to work one day, not realizing until I am at work that I have made yet another dumb wardrobe decision, make my way through an excruciating day with blinding pain, then come home, take off the shoes, and put them back in my closet without even a sticky note to label them as “Shoes That Cannot Be Worn for More Than 5 Minutes without Completely Hobbling You for the Next Week”.
- Why Dimples takes 90 minute showers, and she does not even shave her legs, yet.
- Why Twitter sent me an e-mail inviting me to use it more often (I never use it; I just signed up for it so I could get a Pinterest account) and then proceeded to suggest that two people I would probably like to follow are Tyra Banks and Snooki.
- How I can explain to Twitter, in 140 characters or less, all of the reasons that I will never follow Tyra or Snooki.
- Why one of my students gave me a very nice gift today, then ran to me after school and said, “Oh, don’t throw out the gift bag because my mom wants it back.”
Why Wonderbutt decided to grab, out of all of the sections of the newspapers spread across the kitchen table, the Obituaries. And dragged them, relatively intact, out to his Poop Pen.
My daughter will be going to middle school (6th-8th grades) for the first time next year. In our area, there are several options for middle schools. We could sell our kidneys, and send her to one of the private schools, or send her to one of three middle schools which are free. One of them is our “home” school, and the other two are magnet schools to which she would need to apply.
I’ve broached the topic of the magnet schools with Dimples several times. Her response has always been that she wants to go to the same school as her friends. When I point out that the magnet schools specialize in topics that interest her, and that she is always complaining that school is boring, she re-asserts the vital necessity of attending the same school as her friends. When I told her the heart-breaking story about a boy who begged his mother to send him to one of the private schools where he could have a more challenging curriculum, promising to give up Christmas gifts until he was 18… guess what? Yeah, blah blah blah friends.
I worried that maybe I had somehow instilled in Dimples too deep a value of friendship, that by my own comments over the years I had given it a higher priority than things like academic achievement – or doing what your mother says is good for you.
The other day, the magnet schools presented to Dimples’ 5th grade class. Later in the day, I talked to one of the 5th grade teachers, and confided Dimples’ deep desire to remain with her friends.
“Oh, you know what the magnet school guy said to the kids about that?” she said. “Ask your parents how many of their middle school friends they actually still keep in touch with.”
“Oh, that’s great!” I said. I don’t even keep up with my high school friends, so I could use that ploy again in 3 more years!
That afternoon, I prepared myself for the magnet school conversation, armed with Mr. Presenter’s clever rejoinder. I asked Dimples if she had enjoyed the presentation.
“Oh, it was great!” she said. “But I could never go there.”
“Why?” I innocently prodded, ready for my cue.
“Because they wear uniforms, Mom, and they are so not fashionable. They have to wear khaki pants with yellow shirts! Yellow and khaki, can you believe it?”
And, for that I had no answer. Because I certainly can’t torture my daughter by forcing her to wear unfashionable clothes.
At least now I know that she has her priorities straight.
So, I got a new job this year. Actually, it’s the same job – just at a different place. I was teaching at my previous school for 13 years, and then got the opportunity to transfer to one closer to my home. When I was swimming in a sea of boxes in the middle of August, and locked out of my room by a cockroach, it occurred to me that volunteering to change schools was not the most intelligent decision I had ever made. In my previous school, cockroaches were usually polite enough to die before I encountered them, and I’m pretty sure that I had a lot fewer teaching materials stored in all of the cubbies and walk-in closet than the plethora that suddenly seemed to poised to swallow me and my new, zero-storage room.
But it was too late to go back. And I adjusted, and made a few medication changes, and prominently displayed an ant farm in the middle of the classroom so the cockroach could make an informed decision about whether or not he wanted to risk another sudden appearance in front of a woman who was not above sticking insects in a transparent prison with fake plastic buildings.
It has taken me until now to realize the true advantage of my new position, and to kick myself for waiting 13 years to make this discovery.
“I love that dress!”
“Wow, you look so fashionable today!”
“You always look so chic!”
“You look beautiful!”
Okay, the last compliment was from a kindergartener who was probably trying to angle a sticker out of me. But, still. Suddenly, praise for my wardrobe is greeting me on a daily basis.
And I haven’t bought anything new.
I just plucked out my same ole winter rags that I’ve worn for the last several seasons, and people are acting like I just walked off the runway. Modeling runway, I mean, of course. Because if I just walked off a plane runway, I’d probably be tackled by Homeland Security and accused of terroristic acts. And full body searched. Which would not be pleasant. And probably would not make me feel very good about myself or my clothes.
So, anyway, I now realize that, instead of spending money on clothing each season so I won’t blend into the wall because people are so used to me wearing the same 5 outfits, I just need to change jobs every year. I need to employ my faculties finding a new faculty to employ me, instead of agonizing over new, risky fashion choices. Consider it my little contribution to the Reduce, Reuse, Recycle Movement.
And, maybe, if I can keep this ingenious plan going for the next 5 or 6 years, I’ll save up enough money to buy this sweet little pair of Jimmy Choos.
What? You weren’t expecting me to donate the cash to charity or something, did you?
I don’t know about you, but when people tell me that I look good, I get cocky.
Then I walk through a paint pan, or drip oil on my silk shirt, or break a heel off my shoe.
So it went the first day of working at my new school this year.
When I walked into the kitchen that morning, Dimples gave me a thumbs up, and the Cap’n told me I looked “hot”. I felt great for about 5 seconds, then realized that they had both just sealed the coffin shut on my first day. I have never once escaped the Compliment Curse, and I knew this day would be no different. The more I needed to look “hot”, the less “hot” I was going to be…
I brought Dimples to school, and we parted in the hallway. She is a morning patrol this year and I, well, I had to do something to look official on my first day.
I wandered around greeting parents and helping people find classrooms, then meandered back to my classroom to start work. As a GT teacher, I don’t have any students the first couple of days. But, I have plenty of work.
After a couple of hours of going cross-eyed with paperwork and basking in my “hotness”, I decided I deserved a break. I walked to the main building, which, as we established in my last post, is the exact distance from my portable as Mars is from Texas. Yes, Mars the planet.
In the Teacher’s Lounge, I passed a mirror. And that’s when I saw it.
The entire raggedy hem of my skirt was hanging down in the rear. Not attractive. Not professional. And definitely not hot.
My first thought was, “Wow, I wish I had a sewing kit here at school.” Dumb.
A. I don’t know how to sew. 2. Where exactly did I think I was going to take off my skirt so I could sew it back together? I certainly couldn’t do it in my classroom, and people were bound to get suspicious if I barricaded the bathroom door for an hour. And their suspicions would probably be worse than my actual predicament. AND, being able to sew doesn’t become any easier when you are in a bathroom closet sitting on a toilet.
So, I backed my way all the way back to my portable, and emptied the drawers of my desk, praying that Neumo, our classroom pet cockroach, would not leap into my face to make my day truly complete.
The tape drawer showed the most promise. I had lime green duct tape I had borrowed from Dimples for some classroom decorating. I imagined myself on Project Runway modeling my new lime green raincoat skirt with masking tape pockets. Definitely hot. Too bad I didn’t have the roll of leopard tape, too…
But, then I noticed my “mavelus tape“, and decided to give that a try instead. I taped my hem, and then strategically placed a bunch of not-so-straight-because-I-use-them-on-my-bulletin-board-pins throughout the entire skirt. As you can imagine, this took quite a bit of finesse considering I was still wearing the skirt.
And I was in a bit of pain any time I sat down.
But that’s nothing new.
I spent the next 4 hours as a voodoo doll, wincing every time I pierced my own skin, and composing a lecture to Cap’n Firepants about how he should never, ever, under no uncertain terms call me “hot” again.
My temporary “fix” made it through the rest of the day with some minor adjustments to my walking stride that I’m certain did not make me look awkward at all.
MacGyver would be proud. Heidi Klum? Not so much.
You can go here if you need an explanation for the whole “Dead Rubber” thing.
I cannot organize my thoughts because Wonderbutt is snoring beside me, and has passed very long and loud, toxic, gaseous clouds at least three times in the past 5 minutes. His windiness trumps my wittiness right now, so I give up.
I will leave you with this disturbing image from the makeup store, Sephora. Hello Kitty makeup? Who exactly is the target audience here?
(Twenty-five years ago, in the midst of being “kidnapped” at 1 A.M. by sorority members during pledging)
Fellow “kidnapping victim”, looking at me: Geez, how do you always look so perfect? It’s the middle of the night, we just got dumped out of bed, and you’ve got every hair in place, and you look gorgeous.
(Yesterday, in the parking lot, after spending an hour getting ready to go to the hospital to visit my mother-in-law:)
Dimples, my daughter: Mom, why do you have two different shoes on?