Tuesday, June 16, 2009

#49 Tongue Rings, Tube Tops and Teen-Speak

Finding Your Own Style at "This" Age

I went shopping the other day and while trying on some clothing, the owner of the boutique came into the dressing room and handed me some shirts, dresses and pants she thought "would look great on me". "Really", I said, thinking that these items were meant for the teenager in the next cubicle. Anyway, I put on one of the shirts and came out to look in the mirror. The shirt was really cute, I admit, but so not appropriate for me, a 47 year old suburban housewife, blog writer, kiddie chauffeur, and yoga student. The next item, a pair of pants, were amazing. They were made of cotton and some other fabric that totally sucked in my thighs and rounded my tush. Woefully, when I tried to sit down in them, I almost caused new damage to an area that had already seen enough damage from the birth of my son with the "Charlie Brown Head". The last item I tried on was a dress that was cut so low and showed so much boob I thought it might be on backwards. Alas, it was on correctly. The owner [my age at the least] thought I looked "adorable" -- I looked at this attractively put-together woman and thought to myself that she looked, well -- silly. Silly, as in totally inappropriate.

My look has changed over the years to what I now call conservative-fun, with a little "urban" thrown in. I think most of us dress in a way that reflects the person we are, who we have become, our interests and our passions. I have a friend who is so "Green" that she won't wear leather shoes nor carry a leather brief case. Another friend dresses in what I consider a "preppy" look. However, no matter your fashion genre, at a certain age, certain articles of clothing just seem "not right". The question is: How are we supposed to know these things? My library doesn't carry the 'aging manual'. You know, the one that says what length your hair should be, the right way to wear make-up, and what you should be wearing at certain ages. The rules of our mothers don't all carry over to our generation.

For those of you thinking there are no rules, trust me, there are. If you are not being "judged" by your family and friends, strangers are looking at you and wondering what you are trying to prove. My son and I watched a talk show a couple of years ago where kids brought their moms for makeovers because they were embarrassed by the way their mothers dressed [too young and too sexy were the main reasons]. Another show, "How do I Look?" has friends and family members write in asking for help to change the way their loved one dresses because it is "inappropriate" for their age, their status, this century, whatever. I think if you look good in an itsy bitsy teeny weeny yellow polka dot bikini, and you're 47, more power to you. BUT, I don't think you should be flirting with the lifeguards... just my opinion.

Because there is no manual or documented record of what a women of a certain age shouldn't wear, I decided that I would make my own "what not" list of what I thought was inappropriate FOR ME. I'm not judging or questioning anyone else. This is just my list.... see, it says Bobbie's with an apostrophe-s.

Bobbie's What Not To Wear, Do, Say List

1. sparkly eye glitter
2. really short shorts, like cheek revealing [i don't care how thin i am]
3. short shirts that show my belly button [unless i'm in the gym]
4. pants or shorts with the brand name across the butt
5. thong sticking out the back of my pants [on purpose]
6. teen-speak [not sure I would know what I was saying if I chose to speak it]
7. purple fingernail polish [i'm ok with it on the toes]
8. siren red lipstick [vertical lip lines; need i say more?]
9. FM shoes [if you don't know what this is, you never owned them]
10. tongue ring [my husband, the oral surgeon, would divorce me]
11. mini skirts [i mean major mini]
12. tube tops [PUH-lease]
13. baby doll shirts [i'm too old to be pregnant... on purpose]
14. thong bathing suit [that's shocking at any age]
15. multiple piercings in one ear [that means probably more than 2, but I could be swayed to maybe 3 if it's done right]
16. "interesting" hair colors [ones that no one is ever born with, ie blue, pink, etc.]

It's hard to get older when you feel young at heart. However, since we all live in glass houses, me thinks it's important to remember that if you want to tell someone that what they are wearing isn't age appropriate, make sure your windows are shatterproof ....just in case a rock is coming your way. LOL

[actually, i may have to re-think #14 -- grandma doesn't look too bad in that thong...]


Anonymous said...

Did you see this article in yesterday's NYTimes? It is right on this topic! I love your blog!


Bobbie's Babbles said...

dear anonymous, thanks for your comment. i just read the article... maybe she read my blog...

Lynn Haraldson-Bering said...

I agree with your list except for #4. Sometimes the only seriously comfy comfy sweats I can find have something written across the butt. Of course I don't go out of the house (usually) wearing them, but they do have their place in my "wardrobe." *snort*

I wear thongs, too, but NEVER could I wear one in public to the beach. I'd have to be stark raving mad before I could do that.

LOVE the Charlie Brown head reference. I birthed one of those, too! "Wow, look at the size of her head" is all I heard as I was pushing and pushing and thinking, "I'm never doing this again!"

Bobbie's Babbles said...

thanks lynn for your sympathy note on the charlie brown head referenc. only those who have done this can appreciate what it's like. my husband [the surgeon] said that after watching me giving birth to my son, he had a whole new respect for women.

anonymous said...

Great article--OMG--so many people need to read this. However-take it from me--it is very difficult to find tops, especially, since everything being sold makes you look pregnant !! Once you add in a couple of giant breasts the task becomes more difficult.

Anonymous said...

Great article--OMG--so many people need to read this. However-take it from me--it is very difficult to find tops, especially, since everything being sold makes you look pregnant !! Once you add in a couple of giant breasts the task becomes more difficult.

Chris H said...

Awesome! I love your list and your reasoning.. I'm right behind ya girl! thongs... IKKKY unless you are super toned and slim really!