Thursday, 10 November 2016

Doing things in style.

Okay! While I would not say that I have got over the shock of discovering that the Americans are as stupid, if not indeed even more stupid, than the British when it comes to voting, life must go on. I suppose I shall have to grow accustomed to seeing Trump's smug face whenever some item concerning the USA pops up in the news. I do not, however, have to learn to like it but, as I said, life goes on.

I woke this morning to rain and so I did not leap out of bed and go for a run but instead rolled over for five minutes and woke again an hour later. My mother would have said that I must have needed the sleep. The rain has sort of come and gone and come again all day since then. The weather witch breadshop lady commented that the rain had come to us - "Nos vino la lluvia" - in resigned tones.

She is not the only person to have commented to me in this way about the weather. It's strange how quickly we grow used to certain weather conditions, even unusual ones, like the extended summer that seems to have gone in all sorts of places. My sister in the South of Spain told me that, instead of cooling down somewhat into autumn, their summer just went on and on. Even in the Northwest of England, September and October kept giving us fine and sunny days, putting off the onset of wintery grey. And, as if we had convinced ourselves that this state of affairs could continue indefinitely, we are now rather surprised to find that we do need to sort out our winter wardrobe after all.

Skimming the paper for items unrelated to elections, poverty, war, the dire state of the world, I came across something by a self confessed fashionista, whose name I neglected to note down. She wrote about a study by a parcel delivery service, based she hazarded a guess on the numbers of pairs of jeans people sent back, that claimed that most people think other people shouldn't wear jeans after the age of 53. By people I think she meant women as the age factor seems to be brought up more often for us than for men. Why the arbitrary selection of age 53? After all, most 53 year-old women nowadays look a whole lot younger than 53 year-old women did at almost any time in the past. 

Which brings me to a little aside about age. In a discussion group recently we decided that MacBeth must be at least middle-aged. Then the youngest member of our select band, a mere 17, when asked to define middle-aged, told us that this meant 35 to 45. Goodness! I am pretty sure my daughter, 36, does not regard herself as middle-aged! But everything is relative. I can remember being a callow young teacher of 22 or 23 and regarding the more experienced 40+ year-olds as positively ancient! Such is the cruelty of youth!

Be that as it may, 53 is apparently the age at which a woman should stop wearing jeans. The fashionista more or less dismissed this on the grounds that jeans come in so many different styles these days and, so long as they are comfortable, she plans to continue wearing them. I'm with her on that. Those skinny, stretchy jeans that look unforgiving on anyone who is not stick thin, I leave to the very young and fashion conscious. Other styles I continue to wear, except for dungarees, a garment I really like but is decidedly a young person's style.

In the final analysis, and I think my fashionista would back me up on this, it all comes down to a few essential question:
* do I feel comfortable in this?
* do I look silly in this?
* do I look like mutton dressed as lamb?

My fashionista wrote about certain dresses she still has in her wardrobe but which she refuses to wear as they make her feel like the artist Grayson Perry dressed up in one of his ultra-feminine outfits. Personally, I draw the line at patterned leggings, which really should not be worn by anyone over the age of 5! Oh, and leggings worn with very short tops, another style that only the stick-thin can get way with successfully but which is often favoured by those more well-endowed in the nether regions. A nice, long jumper or tunic, please, ladies.

Of course, I may change my mind tomorrow and decide to apply other criteria to my wardrobe. Perhaps I shall simply grow old and outrageous!

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