Listen, I don’t have a lot going on right now (other than constant panic), and therefore, I’m going to tell you about my t-shirts. Let’s be real, though, the existence of this blog is hard evidence that I rarely have a lot going on, so you can expect more posts just like this one. You might, then, ask yourself: is this person a recluse? What does she mean she doesn’t have a lot going on? I’m here to tell you, though — I’m not socially awkward (emphasis on socially), I just have no real interests, so I’m unbearable to have a real conversation with. I love chatting with people, but I can’t say the person on the other end feels the same.
You’re lucky I give myself several days to write these posts. Otherwise, reading my innermost thoughts would be agonizing.
Rambling, and now moving on (see what I mean about listening to me?).
Genie in a Bottle
From the moment that my mother (mistakenly) decided that I had enough sense to dress myself, I’ve had a t-shirt problem. And by problem, I don’t mean it in a superficial way — where I have too many t-shirts. The problem isn’t inherently a shopping problem. (Although that is true — I do have too many shirts and a shopping problem — this is not quite where the problems end for me.)
Let’s start at the beginning. The point when I was given the ultimate responsibility in choosing my own outfits. Let’s travel back to the Mickey Mouse Club days of 1995.
Um, there was a time when belly shirts were acceptable attire for ladies (and sometimes on men, re: backstreet boys). But, in 1995, before Britney made it popular (circa 1999; & yes, I do know every useless fact about 90s popstars), I mysteriously found myself staring down a girls’ sized belly shirt in my closet. This closet shirt remains a bit clandestine because my mom did NOT want me to wear this shirt.
(Looking back, the situation truly begs a series of questions: who bought me this shirt? Did my grandma buy me this shirt? Did she think a belly shirt would look nice on her granddaughter? Was it an uncle? Why would he do that? How did this happen to a 6-year-old?)
Back to staring at the shirt in my closet. The shirt of my dreams was white with very thin & airy fabric, and it tied into a bow in the front, just above my belly button. A bare belly button seemed so appealing.
My family was going out to dinner, and I was told to change out of my play clothes and put on something nice to wear in public. Obviously, I came downstairs, proudly wearing my belly shirt with a pair of polka dot leggings – the outfit I decided was just flawless for public viewing. I was a 6-year-old genie in a bottle. A perfect outfit, and my mom was horrified. I was cute, and she was mad.
She, of course, told me to take it off and change into a regular shirt for dinner. I screamed until she gave up on trying to be a good mother. Since I was insufferable to reason with, we went out to dinner, and I wore the belly shirt.
Here’s the thing, though: after about 3 minutes in the restaurant, I became very cold. It was June, and the jerks who owned the restaurant thought air-conditioning was a necessary & welcomed treat for all patrons. How wrong they were. And considering how insufferable I am to reason with, I refused to tell my family that I made a bare belly button mistake during dinner. I sat in silence with a cold belly and barely touched my dinner.
As the night went on, I couldn’t contain my feelings any longer. After dinner, my belly button felt like an ice cube. Subsequently, in the parking lot, much like an afterschool special, I put my hand on my mom’s arm, and she stopped to look at me. I looked up at her.
“Mom, I should have listened to you. I’m… still hungry.”
I couldn’t enjoy my chicken fingers at all because of the belly button draft. I deeply regretted not being able to enjoy those chicken fingers.
I won’t give you the gory details into each t-shirt escapade I’ve endured throughout my life. I will, though, give you a brief synopsis of a few more ridiculous ideas I’ve had about shirts, outfits, and clothes in general.
Later in life, I bought a hideous tie dye Grateful Dead t-shirt that I wore on the daily; the phase moved onto wearing only t-shirts that were long enough to cover my butt (even though I was around 10 and had no butt), which was a stark contrast to the bare belly button phase; then, weekend pants.
Weekend pants were puke green athletic pants: flared at the bottom with a stripe down the side. I have vivid memories of wearing my weekend pants while on my scooter and only on the weekends.
They were exclusively called weekend pants, without an article attached.
“Mom, where in the world are weekend pants? It’s almost Saturday!”
My sibling, Lars, had these two things to say about his memory of weekend pants:
- “She never washed them.”
- “They smelled like the dickens.”
My family is still uncertain how these puke green pants became the only pants I would wear on the weekends. They were comfortable, but I only wore leggings on schooldays, so I don’t know how much more comfortable they were than leggings. At this point, though: who’s to say? They were called weekend pants, and that’s who I am.