Thursday, August 04, 2016

Mauled at the mall

So we're in Columbus for a quick overnight trip, visiting a sick relative and doing a little retail therapy (upgrading my teaching wardrobe!), and we even caught the new Star Trek movie at a five-dollar matinee (and when was the last time you spent a mere five dollars to see a first-run film?), and things are going well except for the shopping part.

The problem is partly mine: it wouldn't be so difficult finding teaching clothes if I were a bit less pear-shaped, and shoes wouldn't be such a problem if my feet were shaped like pointy triangles instead of the Hindenburg. But part of the blame goes to clothing manufacturers, who think it's acceptable to charge $134 for a lightly embellished rayon tank top. Granted, it's a gorgeous sage color and it would look great with this incredible jacket I just bought, but the lower edge isn't even hemmed! It's just a raw edge dangling there to remind us peons that people who can afford to pay $134 for a rayon tank top are simply too cool for hems. 

Another blouse was absolutely lovely and nicely made in a fabric that did not feel as if it started its life in a polymer factory, but it cost nearly $150 and matches nothing I currently own. It was begging for a nice periwinkle skirt and jacket and matching pumps, but as far as I'm concerned, it will have to keep begging. (Have you visited a plus-size women's department lately? Apparently, women of size are supposed to wear black and--well, black. Brighter colors need not apply.)

And then when I finally found a cute, colorful suit in my size, I puzzled over when to wear it: the heavy fabric would be uncomfortable in warm weather, but the three-quarter sleeves would expose too much flesh in cold weather. It would be perfect for one or two transitional weeks in the fall, but who buys a suit that can be worn so rarely?

Not that I am bitter. After all, I did find that great jacket and another versatile blouse, and I finally managed to convince my husband that I'm not exaggerating when I tell him that I am capable of visiting a gigantic shoe store without finding more than three pairs in my size, all ugly. He was with me this time and now he knows why shoe-shopping makes me want to cut off my feet at the ankles and replace them with permanent roller-skates. 

Which might make it easier to zip around in a shopping mall the size of Schenectady, but have you ever tried to pull on a pair of pants over roller skates? That's a whole new level of annoying.

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