Monday, November 22, 2010

fall in to the gap

I meant to go clothes shopping this weekend, with the wads of birthday money that was burning a hole in my pocket. I never quite got around to it though, I was too busy traipsing all over God’s green earth to stock the Westy for her maiden voyage! It was fun, despite the pouring rain and the fact that every other working stiff alive was also out shopping on this pre-holiday weekend. I live by the Park Far Away and Be the Buddha credo when facing retail throngs, but I think that the patience of Buddha himself would have been tested this weekend. We’re pretty well set though, but I think we might need another Westy just to haul all the crap.

I still need clothes. I have none. NONE! Every morning is a study in despair as I paw through my drawers laundry basket for something to put on. I have plenty of warm weather clothes, dresses and long shorts and sleeveless shirts galore for my summer/spring/fall wardrobe. But we’re creeping up on that one glitch in the San Diego weather pattern, and although it is fleeting, it is here: winter. This dreadful truth leads to another:  I need pants. The only good thing about wearing pants is that I can opt out of shaving my legs.

It’s hard to find good pants! The first (of many) problem is that I am short. Second is that I can not – and SHOULD not - tolerate any width in my pants. I can rock my skinny jeans like nobody’s business, but that is not exactly proper workplace attire. My workplace is about as casual as they come, but I do need to put forth some semblance of professionalism in my wardrobe, so I am constantly on the hunt for the ever elusive perfect trousers. I haven’t had much luck so far this year.

In fact, when I went back east a couple of weeks ago, I only brought two pair of pants, one was my most favorite, fabulous jeans; the other was also jeans, but in a trouser cut that I imagined I would dress up to go to the theeee-yay-tah. However, when I put those on, I realized that they were entirely hideous. I don’t know how I’d never noticed it before! Ew! So I wore my trusty fabs to NYC, and I really never took them off for the entire weekend…. with one notable exception.

Mom and Mar and I left NYC on Friday afternoon for an important meeting, and although Mar and I were really only needed for moral support and decoration, we were glad to serve. I had on my trusty jeans, a nice enough long sleeved shirt, and a pair of nice warm brown socks that matched my purdy brown shoes. However, after an unexpected sprint in those cogs followed by a night and day of walking across Manhattan in them, I had opted to leave them at home for this errand and borrowed a comfy old pair of soft black clogs from Mom.

As the meeting drew toward its end, Mom suggested that we go to Shorehaven afterward for a drink. Celebration was in order, as was a healthy dose of the hair of the Russian vodka dog.  We grinned in anticipation, but our joy was short lived. You see, had I been wearing sweatpants, hotpants, or parachute pants, I would have been welcome at the Shore of Haven; but in my jeans I was no better off than a sinner at the gates of heaven.

Mom and Mar instantly fell into can-do mode, strategizing how to class up my bottom half. First one and then the other threw out the name of one of mom’s friends who lived between our current location and the club, suggesting that we stop by and borrow a skirt, just for an hour. There I sat at the oak conference table, speechless in the face of those four thirsty, hopeful eyes upon mine. I wanted to be agreeable, I wanted to be respectable, I wanted a drink, too! Then I revealed the horror that lurked beneath the legs of my sassy jeans: hairy legs, brown socks, and old black clogs. And they wanted me to borrow a skirt from a friend of my mom’s! I know this will surprise many of you, but I do have some standards! I refused. There was only one solution that would get us to Shorehaven, and Mom and Mar reluctantly agreed to give me five minutes inside of The Gap.

This was no time to browse or dream, I headed straight for the salesgirl and told her my predicament, hairy legs and all. We quickly agreed that the only option was black pants. She looked me up and down and instantly understood the nature of any pants that would work for me, and brought me right over to the super straight trousers, only to find that there were none in my size. I considered the larger, and even briefly considered the smaller non-size that fit my length, but ultimately settled for the right size in a long, and simply tucked under the extraneous 45 feet of black fabric that could have fit another two entire legs under mine.  

We had our drinks! And yet another great story under our belts (as it were). Mar even offered to hem the pants for me, which was such an unexpected and generous gesture! I graciously accepted, and at some point over the weekend I hopped up on a chair so that the length could be measured and pinned, and I left the pants with Mar to work her magic.

On my birthday propah, the one and  only thing that came in the mail was a package from NYC, bubble wrapped and gift wrapped, despite the fact that Mar had given me a more than generous gift in person the week before (see above about wads of birthday cash burning holes). It was another nice gesture by my biggest sister though, whose kindness and helpfulness are rivaled only by her humility. The card she enclosed smacked me right in the funny bone:

“…And I hope the pants are OK. I’m not an expert tailor, but I’d wear them. They’re not perfectly exact, much to my chagrin, but I’m sure no-one will notice!”

This story just keeps getting better! I’m wearing them today, Mar! Thank you so much for hemming them, you are beyond awesome. I’m certain that no one will notice the extremely slight variance in length, and if they do I’ll insist that one of my legs is longer than the other. 


Me, You, or Ellie said...

They're uneven? Ohmygod that's perfect. Perfect! She's awesome.

And so are you. And so is your post. You are a font of wit and intelligence and humor and you crack me up.

And I just got your text from 11:49 last night. Those GD beer fairies! Hope you successfully swatted them out of your beverage and had yourself a lovely time.

Now get those trousers on and get out there and um, limp out into the world!

Love you.

pants issues in PA said...

If it makes you feel any better, those same black straight-legged trousers from the Gap had an extra 45 yards of fabric in my correct size and I'm 5'7"...I think the Gap seamstresses were hitting the bottle when they were sewing that line.

Me, You, or Ellie said...

From the sounds of it, the Gap seamstresses weren't the *only* seamstresses hitting the bottle....


Autumn said...

I love the way you throw "winter" out there like it's winter here... Ha! And you should try JCrew. They make pants for little bitties like yourself.

MB said...

Yay, I'm glad the pants arrived on your b'day proper and you're wearing them today! Woo-hoo xoxo

Me, You, or Ellie said...

That is perfectly imperfectly perfect.

I want me a big sister just like MB. I can't believe she sews. And I can't wait to check out the black pants in person!


Logical Libby said...

Tall girls can bitch all they want, but short girls have the complaint market covered when it comes to pants. Either you look dowdy, or like you are trying to fit in to your kid's clothes.