Sunday, May 02, 2010

Confession: what I have been thinking about is fashion. Part of this taking-care-of-myself nonsense. How very women's magazine.

History? Armchair fashionista, all longing and anger and doom.

I started without a chance, no money, sacks of old hand-me-downs many times picked over, two blocks from the public library. I can tell you about the Dior dress. I can tell you about thread count, and rayon viscosity, and the de-constructed genius of Chanel. I can identify silk and cashmere from their synthetic counterparts by touch, from walking down the aisles of value village and examining every piece, from stealing into banana republic for moments at a time only to fondle and gape.

I wear enormous men's wool hiking socks under four year old sauconys, layers of plain threadbare t-shirts, black thrift-store jeans, sometimes hats.

I resent my passion, because this is what's expected of me, as a woman. I resent it because it at first was fueled so entirely by expectations of others which I would ABSOLUTELY NEVER be able to meet. But--there are things you need. Clothes to wear, for example; to sleep in and hike in, to work or work out or go grocery shopping.

I resent it also because it is most commonly followed with such vapid, brainless persistence. There's nothing say with clothes if your entire world is clothes, nothing but self-referential circles to chew off your tail in. It is social appropriateness; it could be art.

I definitely don't have this clothing and gender stuff figured out. It helps that my closest guy friend is an artist and dresses well--equality, or at least a taste--what would the world be like if everyone would dress well? Prettier, for sure. More expressive. Aesthetic preferences say something about your soul.

I've been coming together about it in pieces. Slowly.