Thursday, May 17, 2007

This Time, I Really Mean It

There have been a few fashion trends over the years that I’ve sworn I would never do, only to turn around and cave to the general standards of societal pressure. I swore I would never wear straight legged acid wash jeans .. and I did. I swore I would never get a spiral perm … and I did. I wore shoulder pads and Izods with the collars flipped up and legwarmers and Rocky Mountains and Ropers, although I did at least avoid the Madonna cone bra and MC Hammer pants. Sometimes, you just gotta look back at an old picture of yourself with mall bangs and a Flashdance sweatshirt, and have a good laugh at your own expense. Hello, Aqua-net, anyone?

While most of my “fashion don’ts” took place in the 1980’s, current fashion sometimes creeps in, as well. And nowhere is my age and general level of frumpiment showing any more than in my overall distaste for today’s trends and styles.

I will never enjoy looking at a young man’s boxer shorts because his pants hang down so baggy it looks likes he’s carrying a load in the back. I will never look at a boy with a K-Fed cocked baseball cap, bill pointing to the side, and think he looks anything BUT mentally challenged. I will never pierce any part of my face, or wear a ring through my nose like Rocky the bull, or stretch my ear lobes out to the size of dinner plates. I will never wear skin tight t-shirts, and although I might have no choice but to purchase low-rider blue jeans because that’s all you can find these days, I swear I will never like them and never get used to them and curse them until the day I die and have to be buried in them and have my Buddha belly hanging out over the top of the coffin because the freaking low-rider jeans won’t hold in my gut. (PS Are Lee Jeans Ultimate Fit still the best ones for people like me who don’t want our hipbones showing? Not that my hip bones have made any kind of appearance since I was about eight years old, but you know what I mean.)

A lot of the time, fashion is right there in your face and you like it or you don’t. Sometimes, however, fashion sneaks in, in a more sinister manner. Under the guise of TECHNOLOGY.

Remember the first cell phones that came out, that were the size of a bread box? And boom boxes were the size of a Buick? Now, ipods and cell phones and PDA’s are almost as small as a credit card.

I swore I would never clip my cell phone to my belt, and I haven’t. I swore I would never use my phone to send text messages … and I haven’t. And I swear, from the bottom of my very bottom tippy toes, that I will N.E.V.E.R. walk around town with one of those stupid earpiece phones on the side of my head. I’m all about hands-free technology making the roads a safer place while you’re driving, but those people who walk through Kroger or the mall, chatting away, or who can’t even take the earpiece off long enough to have dinner in a restaurant, just look silly to me. And it annoys me that I often assume they are talking to me, when they're coming towards me in the cereal aisle and their expression is animated and their lips are moving, and I will often say something ridiculous and presumptous, like, “Excuse me?” only to realize they’re talking to the person in their ear and actually aren’t giving me the time of day, let alone asking me if I know where the Count Chocula is located.

I pulled into our local post office yesterday to drive through the circle and put something in the mailbox. There was a man just standing in the middle of the lot, with his back to me, talking to himself, waving his hands around and doing the rap-man’s posture thing. It’s a very small post office …. Sort of an out-post, and he and I were the only two people around. Then he ambled over to the mailboxes and dropped something in. Then he turned and quasi-faced me, gesturing, and waving his arms, and grabbing his nether-regions, and talking and talking and talking the whole time. He just STOOD in the drive thru lane, right in my path, and I was pretty sure he was crazy. I checked that my doors were locked, and the windows rolled up, before he turned some more and I saw the ear piece hooked on his ear. I guess when you’re not holding the phone, and your hands are free, they are suddenly more available for waving around. And touching yourself. While I waited (because there was no WAY I was pulling up any where near where he was standing) he finally, slowly, began to amble off in the other direction, talking and gesturing and grabbing all the way. He never acknowledged my presence, and I wondered if he had any idea how ridiculous he looked to the rest of us. Er, to me.

So there you go. I think they look stupid, and I’m stating it publicly: No earpiece for me, ever. I'll either stop what I'm doing to make or take a call, if I can't manage to hold a phone and talk and walk at the same time.

Of course, I swore I didn’t need a DVR and I got one (and although I still don’t watch tv any more than I used to, it sure is a relief not to worry about getting home in time for Dancing With the Stars.) I also swore I would never wear a fanny pack on vacation, and I did. So maybe there’s a headset in my future and I just haven’t accepted it yet.

But I will NEVER walk around talking on it and grabbing my crotch and scaring women at the local post office, all at once.

This time, I really mean it.


Cate said...

I refuse to use a bluetooth. As a matter of fact, lately I've been leaving my cell phone in the car whenever I arrive someplace. It's so nice to be left alone. Granted it's my business phone so I probably should carry it, but for the love of pete, can my clients not call me on a SUNDAY???

Denise Ward said...

I'm intrigued by what kind of a conversation would require crotch grabbing? No wonder it freaked you out!

M, Ms. R, Mom, Auntie M, Marey said...

...u wil text when u hav a teen 2 keep n tuch w/

Jeri from Hawaii said...

I almost always agree with your point of view...but this time I found myself jumping out of the chair yelling Hallujah Sister!!! I thought I was the last person on the face of the earth that thought the ear piece is a ridiculous fashion accessory. God help me I never want to be SO important that I can't be out of touch - ever! I personally think the folks that talk to themselves all the time (ok, maybe they're really talking to someone in their ear) are a little too full of themselves. Hmmm, so important that you can't grocery shop alone, can't eat dinner in a resaurant, can't even mail a letter at the post office with out being in touch - NO THANK YOU!

I'm sort of like Cate, I have two cell phones (one personal and the other for work) but I often leave them in the car, or in my purse, or in the locker. I might drive people a little crazy, but I refuse to be a slave to the phone. OK, maybe the real reason is I am a techno-phobe and I just don't want to be bothered learning how to text message or take pictures with my phone (I can't even usually get decent pictures with a camera, why would I want to use my phone??)

Anonymous said...

I realized the other day that I'm beginning to sound like my mom who had no clue what to do when microwave ovens came out. I had to have my husband explain these new technology items to me. When did I get old? Thanks for reminiscing about the '80s clothes. Unfortunately for me, I really liked the '80s. How sick is that? I was in my 20s. I had somewhat of a waistline. My very favorite dress had a regular rounded neckline in front and it had a V-neck and buttons in back, and the patent leather belt was turned around so that the buckle was in back. I never went for the Big Hair, but it WAS permed and fluffy. That was before I had children and forgot to lose weight. Which reminds me....I need to fill out my points tracker on Weight Watchers Online. :-( I received a text message the other day and thought my phone was weirding out on me because I didn't know I had that capability. Just me being a talker, I guess, because I really prefer to call. Back to fashion ... the shoulder pads really did offset big boobs, and that was nice. But not the football-style shoulder pads. Wow... now I'm feeling fat again.

Claire in Indiana

Anonymous said...

Oh my God.. that was the funniest post you have ever written.. I almost peed in my pants (sorry for TMI). I also laughed at people with those 'ear phones'.. but I got one (Bluetooth) for Christmas, and living up here in NY State where you must have a headset while driving, it's just easier to use than something with a cord. That way when the kids I've left home call, it answers itself, and I don't run off the road while looking for the ringing phone.. I know, I know, I should be able to be out of touch for a little while, but if I missed that Fire Dept in on the way call, I'd feel like a bad mom.. I do, however, leave the Bluetooth in the van when I get out.. so I don't walk around talking to myself and gesturing wildly.

You are one of the few people in the world who can make me laugh out loud while reading .. You just paint a perfect picture with your words!

Can you fill us in some time on why you're disappointed about your retirement plans? I know, I should let those old questions drop, but I've been following Kendrie for years so I feel invested in your family. (scary, huh?)

Have a great day, thanks so much for starting mine with a belly laugh..

Rosemary from Albany NY

M said...

just wait! You WILL text message when your kids are teens! Derek texts me all the time and sometimes the only way I can get a message to him is to text. (can you believe that he is almost 14! and he is soooo starting to act it!)


The Running Girl said...

Thanks for the trip down memory lane. Living in Texas and being in high school in the 80s, I definitely had the big hair. My kids laugh at the pictures. I also had (and still have in a closet somewhere) some parachute pants. How pathetic is that? And I also hate seeing boxers beneath jeans.

I may be behind on technology as well, but every now and then I'll use the text part of my phone. I don't know all the abbreviations, but it is nice for some things. We'll see what happens when Madison gets a phone. When I see that commercial on tv where the mom takes the girls phone away because she has been texting too much, I envision that to be Madison and me. Sigh.


Anna said...

Oh my gosh, I hate that too! Not only do the people look ridiculous, but I always think they're talking to me too. One of my students had a really ghetto mom who would wear hers to our conferences. I wanted to say,"Excuse me, can't you take that out of your ear long enough to talk about your child's problems?" I mean, was she actually planning to answer it if someone called while she was talking to me???!!!

Anonymous said...

There is something called "Cell Phone etiquite" that society has taken a pass on! I agree with all of your statements- grocery store/convenience store talking is a big no no. What about business people? In the middle of a meeting, ringing phones, HOW RUDE!! Or a one on one meeting when client (in my case) takes a call as if their time is so much more important than mine. I always leave my phone in the car (ear piece attached). I will get my messages and return calls when I am in the car and in the car only! I find that to be the respectful way to handle both my business and personal life. Don't take personal calls while we are out to lunch either!!! Again, my time is valuable- I choose to spend it with you. I will not answer my phone neither should you!!! Emergencies aside of course. Or the Dr calling you while you are at Walmart. There are some calls you just HAVE to take. I get it!!! But, I can't imagine that everyone is waiting for a call from their oncologist! Can you?

Kathy with so many opinions here in Pa

Anonymous said...

So, so, funny! Kristi, you echo my sentiments about the blue-tooth thing! My husband watches a lot of Sci-Fi and I always think that those people with flashing blue lights remind me of a Cyborg(sp?) or something!

Mrs. Who said...

1. Try Lee Riders jeans at Wal-Mart. They come up to your waist and fit great. They even come in stretch material. I think they are called mom jeans, but I DON'T CARE. I can't stand having my flabby belly hang over my jeans.

2. TOTALLY agree with you about the cell phone issue. Even wrote a post about it myself.

Keep writing. I read your blog every day!!

D said...

As usual ----ROFLMAO. I am so, totally with you on everything you mentioned. Nothing sparks memories of old like the smell of Aqua Net. And, what's up with jeans these days--- I mean every woman that I have spoken to above 30 has stated that they prefer jeans that actually cover their hips. Surely, designers must realize this. I personally have taken to buying "old school" Gap jeans from thrift stores and garage sales whenever I can find them.

Anonymous said...

I really thought that my friends and I actually caused the hole in the ozone with our OVERuse of aquanet. I really think that my gray "highlights" were caused by aersol glue called aquanet.

Ear thing - just hate it. Some guy used it during the entire time of my daughters ball game. She is 9 , where are peoples priorities!!

Anonymous said...

Yep, just say no to bluetooth. At least in public places. But, as m, ms r, mom, auntiem, marey said, u wil text when u hav a teen 2 keep n touch w./ Trust me, you will. You might hate it like me, but you will.

And, you did bring up the retirement plans. And you know we are all nosy. Elaine in Lynnwood

Anonymous said...

OK ~~ I'm with you on the whole cell phone thingy. What's a bluetooth anyway and when the hell did everyone become so damned important!?! Not agreeing with you so much on the jeans though......I'll take the low jeans any day ~ muffin tops and all!! I hate the straight legs though ~ YUCK!! OMG I wore shoulder pads with my shoulder pads in my 20's. What was I thinking.....oh yeah ~~ they made my butt look smaller. Yeah right! You crack me up!

Suzy Rose ~ mom to Kendall ~ another amazing ALL survivor

Mixed Up Me said...

I hate those ear things too . . . My mom hates them equally as much, so my dad, who has one for business traveling, teased her and told her he was going to wear it during their cruise to Alaska, "just for fun, since there isn't phone reception!"

Melissa said...

Jeans: Try LL Bean. They have several fits, none of which are "low riders". I like the relaxed fit. Also they come in "short" in all sizes so those of who are pettite in height, but nothing else! Gotta order them online or through the catalog, but they have a great return policy.

I hate the bluetooth things cell phone is usually buried in my purse, and OFF. It's for MY use not other peoples! Besides, no one ever calls me! 80% of the time it's battery is dead!

Natalie said...

I am The Queen, I'm telling you THE QUEEN, of thinking people are talking to me when they're on their headsets. Can't tell you how many times I've done this. Totally embarassing. Although I will admit to having a Bluetooth because I am a firm supporter of not holding the phone and driving at the same time. But maybe that's just me because I also can't walk and chew gum at the same time. It's safer for everyone--trust me.

Anonymous said...

Dear Kristie,
I too hate those boys baggy trousers with the crotch hanging so low and their underpants showing, it's so awful. I've seen girls wearing jeans so low and half their strings showing at the back, I guess they think it is attractive and they will have the guys chasing them. Personally, I would think it would be a turn off, it looks so slutty! I live in France, when I see girls like that, I get near enough (if possible) to see if they are speaking English which they invariably are, I don't think French girls would dress like that!
As other's have said in your guest book, when you have teenagers you will probably text, it is an easy way to keep in contact, saves you worrying about them as much!
Take care,
Love Angela