Sunday, July 8, 2007


The other day TL and I went to the Southland Mall, a very unfancy mall where everything is on sale right now, perhaps due to the rumored remodel scheduled to start in the fall. I wanted a soft-serve ice cream cone and she needed a bathing suit for the beach (some of us are going to Maui next week). I proposed that as it is summer and the mall will probably be filled with teenagers who aren't gainfully occupied at summer school or jobs or camp, we could throw on our teen 'tudes and pretend it was the mid-'80s. Amazingly enough the mall complied, as in every store we went to, the music was a nostalgic (ahem) selection of Chicago ("You're The Inspiration"), Cyndi Lauper ("Time After Time"), and Stevie Wonder ("I Just Called To Say I Love You"). There may have even been some Hall & Oates.

At first we tried to remember to say "Oh my gaw-odd!" as often as possible.

I wound up getting a pair of long shorts, or maybe they are capris. Even if I knew, it's hard to tell because my legs are so short that pants that are supposed to be mid-calf length just look like really bad high-waters. I also got a couple of sleeveless shirts. What I didn't get, and should have, was a bra and a new pair of jeans. I don't know what it's like for people who can wear Levi's numbered jeans, but I can't, and that's okay because Sears and Penney's always have the jeans I like.

I went back today by myself. It's been awhile since I shopped for clothes by myself, as Zirpu has excellent taste and he usually comes along. But jeans and a bra - that's like asking Superman to open the pickle jar.

Something happened while I was trying on bras that would have killed me as a teenager. Someone opened the door and started to walk in while I was topless! How many of us have the kill-me-now memory of the saleslady barging in when our mothers took us for our first bras? I snapped, "Excuse me, knock first please!" I pushed the door shut, only to hear the same person do it to the woman in the next booth (she snapped, "Hell-ooo! Knock first, okay?!").

Selected bra in hand (and shirt back on) I went to the corner where the jeans were. Ack! They only had a few pairs of Lee (pants for women with hips, hello) and they were stretch jeans! Double ack! So I toddled off to Penny's, sure they would have them there. I don't know what is going on at Lee but while Penney's had a wider selection of sizes, they were still all stretch jeans. What the hell is up with that?

I've been living with my body for almost forty years and we're used to each other now. We have a different relationship than we did before the car wreck so shopping for clothes is easier than it was when I hated everything about shopping: the fitting rooms, the tryings-on, the mirrors, and the choice. Still, I got cranky really quickly because they didn't have the right jeans and all of these made me look like a big circle in the middle. When the hips were wide enough, the waist band was much too big. I felt myself descending into that place of "I wish my body were different" and ditched the buying of jeans.

Then I had a quite a time finding dark-colored undies. Apparently inexpensive underwear only comes in white or pink or, if you're lucky, light blue. TL pointed out that white underwear is better for white pants, and I agree, but as I don't wear white pants (and wear a slip with my one white skirt) I don't need white undies. White undies says "Granny" to me and I don't like them. I wound up having to get underwear at Victoria's Secret, a store which has ad campaigns of which I don't approve. But at least they have black and navy blue underwear!

The other day it was much more fun and useful to be at the mall. This morning it was just annoying.


Saipan Writer said...

Very funny!

I too have short legs. I also have an enormous butt (although my hips aren't wide). It just sticks out so much that people have actually gasped when I turned around, shocked to see it. What can I say.

I, too, have gotten used to my body. And to being unable to find pants that fit both rear end and waist.

I noticed Stacy and Clinton (on TLC's What Not to Wear) once telling a woman with a similar problem to just buy the damn pants that fit the rear/hips, because you can always have the waistband altered/adjusted.

Why did I never think of that?

Good luck on your search for jeans. You won't want them in Maui, tho'. Get a cute sundress. It will be too hot for jeans.

Samatakah said...

Actually Bink said (via email, but wanted to post it here):

If you like basic cotton underwear, Target has nice ones that are good quality and inexpensive and come in colors. Also, I have the same problem with jeans that fit my hips not fitting my waist. What I do is just buy jeans to fit my hips, then take in two darts in the front and two in the back at the waistline. It is easy to do if you have access to a sewing machine, and if not, any tailor could do it for you.