Enjoying the warmer temperatures and anticipating upcoming spring weather, I took a look at my all-black closet and decided to go do some spring shopping for a little color. My plans took a slight shift when Kenny announced he’d like to join me, but then I envisioned a few new purchases, with a stop for a glass of yummy red wine at whatever outdoor cafe (okay, bar) that we found along the way, so we hopped in the car and headed for Portland.
Scratching my original plans for a leisurely, day-long stroll through my favorite boutiques (Kenny’s shopping style is more “get in, buy it, get out”), we hit the mall. Lights, noises, food courts, and miles of brightly lit windows featuring hot colors, shorter lengths, and summer fabrics.
Found a store we liked, where I grabbed a few colorful pieces and a swimsuit, and happily headed for the dressing room, imagining my trendy summer style. 15 minutes later, the day was going south on a luge. The cute pink jeans wouldn’t budge past my thighs. Seriously?? I peeled them off and checked the size. Yep, size 8. Apparently that refers to my knees, not my hips, because those suckers weren’t going all the way up in this lifetime. Tossed them over the swinging door in a disgusted heap and grabbed the shorts (yeah, THERE’S a good idea. If the jeans don’t fit, try the shorts). Hopped up and down trying to heave-HO them up far enough to button the waist until I finally squeezed the snap shut. Oh. My. God. I looked like a giant banana-nut muffin. And when did my thighs start jiggling?? They didn’t jiggle last year. But there they were, in all their white, tanless glory, shaking like jello shots to the beat of Girls Just Wanna Have Fun blaring over the loudspeaker, which wouldn’t have been so depressing if I hadn’t been STANDING STILL.
I looked up to see Kenny poke his head over the door, smiling, “I found a few pair of jeans for myself while I was waiting.” “Did you try them on?” I asked. “Don’t need to. They’re a 36. They’ll be fine.” “Hating you just a little bit right now.”
In my final act of desperation, I grabbed the swimsuit (one-piece, skirted bottom, very 40s pin-up retro, and black. Could work). Size 8-10? Yeah, if you live in Taiwan and your fit model is a 12-year-old BOY. I looked like a weiner dog stuffed into a tube top, with skin squishing out at both ends. By now I’m in tears, and Kenny is calling through the door, “Is there anything I can get for you, sweetie?” A hankie, I sniffled. And a gun. Meanwhile, the 14-year-old anorexic salesgirl, with impossibly long, firm legs, chirps out, “Don’t worry, ma’am,” (ma’am??) “It’s not summer yet. You still have time.” To do what?? Lose the same 10 pounds I’ve been working on since 1974? Oh shut up and go eat a cheeseburger.
We bought Kenny’s new jeans and left my new clothes, along with the last shred of my self-esteem, on the dressing room floor. On our way to the winery, Kenny suggested a quick stop at Safeway for a few essentials. At day’s end, you’ve got to love a man who watches you toss Milk Duds, Hot Tamales, Fig Newtons, Ice Cream Sandwiches, Lucky Charms, and half a dozen bottles of wine (10% off with 6!) into the cart, while wailing the entire time about how hard it is to lose weight, and who has the good grace (and natural survival skills) not to say a word.