Posted by Danny
I love school uniforms. I’m not as concerned about the value of leveling the playing field for all students as I am for the simplicity of getting dressed each morning, although I’m sure both reasons have merit.
This is the first year ever that one of my kids did not have to wear a polyester outfit five days a week throughout the school year. DJ, at a new high school, has the freedom to wear pretty much anything she wants to wear. And you know what that means…according to her, she is grossly lacking fashion options.
So, we hit the Streets at Southpoint mall a week ago.
I used to go into a store and look for a nice bench to rest my feet. But I noticed that most girls who are shopping have someone else with them to help pick things out and to give opinions. I see lots of moms and daughters laughing or arguing at the mall. I love to laugh, and I’m learning to spar. I thought to myself, “I can do this! I can shop with a 14-year-old.”
I’m sort of a clothes horse myself, although I specialize in dress shirts and bow ties. I wondered if I could apply my Nowell’s experience to the Urban Outfitters.
To my surprise, I found that I really got into helping DJ lug stuff around the store, and I was not short on opinions. I found myself saying things like:
“You can’t wear linen after Labor Day. That’s a BIG no-no. That would have to be for next year.”
“I like the scoop neckline on that dress. The V neck isn’t flattering to your complexion.” I’m not sure that made sense but I liked the round one better and complexion sounded very shoppy.
“That’s cute but you don’t have any shoes to go with that outfit. We’re gonna have to hit Nordstrom.”
I even caught myself pointing out that “Purple is the new black,” although I made that up because I couldn’t find DJ’s size except in purple (if any of you hear me asking if my pants make my butt look big, you have permission to smack me).
It makes me sad to realize that Lisa can’t be there to go into the dressing room with my girls to help them zip things up and argue with them about the appropriateness of their dress length. Instead, they have a dorky father waiting by the door ready to give an opinion that can’t possible hold any level of credibility.
“Dad, what do you think?”
“I think it is defective – your butt is hanging out. It has a negative inseam. Take it off and I’ll report it to the sales clerk.”
I realize that the primary reasons DJ is still willing to shop with me are because I represent both transportation and VISA. But regardless of the reasons, I just like to spend time with her – even if it is in the overly perfumed, semi-naked postered Abercrombie and Fitch.
And the one benefit my shopping philosophy has over Lisa’s for the girls? After two hours I’ll buy anything regardless of the look or price. 120 minutes and I’m done – there becomes no price too high for my freedom.