Friday, March 5, 2010

Clothing is BAD!

You need not turn away for fear of an expose' on a nudist camp (Ha – that’s a funny phrase on a number of levels). It’s not that I shun clothing, it’s just that most clothing finds ways to confound my under-developed brain. I have patiently tried to make peace with the stuff for decades, but it is disagreeable at best and ‘Pol-Pot’ evil at best.

My jacket in particular obviously receives more than ample exercise during the colder seasons of the year. Though it complains little, in its silent but deadly way, it tries irritating me with sophomoric tricks. The pocket liner for one has separated from the normal pocket hole, however only on ONE side. So unless you purposefully reach in and insert the things that you normally put in pockets with care, they may choose the normal fist-sized recess, or more likely, they will drop off into the Grand Canyon? Yes that space behind your pockets is the black hole of jackets and the really fun part is that the space is a continuous void that extends from one side of the garment to the other.

I know it sounds like a pretty minor thing to complain about with real troubles in the world. But consider the daily, if not hourly, frustration of losing ones keys, absent-mindedly into that void of batting; dark unseen places previously only known to Sri Lankan seamstresses. I have found pens, pencils, paper clips, business cards, a rubber band, and exactly 57 cents (interestingly enough excluding quarters) lost deep in the fabric of space-time itself.

If you are familiar with winter jackets, then you likely have owned one with that rugged continuous cord that extends the girth of the jacket. You snug up this string presumably to get a more body-hugging fit at the waistline. Sadly I never have had need to snug up any garment over my jolly waist, but that does not mean that little evil string will leave me alone. On the outside, if that cord gets caught and pulled to one side, the coat will bunch up and rise on one hip while flaccidly draping helplessly on the other. For a person of my size, this unfairly gives the untrained observer a reason to flee screaming for ‘Sanctuary’ as a modern day ‘hunchback’ bears down upon them from a darkened drug store parking lot.

Fortunately my self esteem is not easily damaged as I simply attempt to adjust the cord and relieve the momentary tension with the horrified observer. But as previously described, the inner parts of the jacket and batting have been dislodged and disturbed from my frequent fishing trips for parking meter money. Now that nasty scratchy batting inexplicably will tangle with every back and forth pull to even up the fall of the jacket. Magically, as if I need the help, my posterior grows a life preserver-sized pillow rolling up in the back of my jacket. Though my esteem is still solidly intact, I do try to avoid the hemorrhoid and Beano medication aisle at Walgreens now.

The final straw to this jacket is the stupid hood. Of course ALL normal adults avoid use of a built-in jacket hood in favor of a more stylish fashion hat and ear-muffs, or a cool skater-dude knitted cap. Nope, not me! When the going gets tough, I raise my oversized head tarp in anticipation of the warmth akin to a tender hug from my Mother. But of course I think of all this too late. Either the wind relentlessly fights my efforts to cinch this parachute closed, or the trash can-sized hood has already filled with rain or snow. So when I pull the hood over, it showers my head and neck with a shivering icy grip of electric-cold.

So forgive me if I do not find the same elation as most of you by opening a bulky Christmas box from Kohls. I just have a negative Pavlovian response to outerwear that far outweighs my inner appreciation of your thoughtfulness. I have begun taking pro-active baby steps at trying to re-condition myself to learn to love my jacket again. Ooo what’s this in my pocket - a QUARTER? And oh my gosh, look … is that a sawbuck inadvertently stuck in my hood? Wow I’m already feeling better! I think I'm ready to cruise ALL of the aisles at Walgreens? Not to worry, Spring is nearly here and I’m pullin’out my WINDBREAKER!

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