The Emperor’s New Clothes


Sometimes the Porcupine reminds me of an unruly boy who just can’t stop getting into mischief. He reminds me of other things too. I secretly desired (not a secret anymore…) to have coffee with him just to see how long he could make conversation before bolting out of the café like a wild stallion bursting out of the corral to run free. I would have some fun stealthily timing how long he would allow himself to be contained. Perhaps the Mona Lisa knows the limits of his endurance for polite social conversation.

He does have a habit of being a bit un-PC – like noticing a woman’s white wet tee-shirt in one steamed up TM class which resembled hot yoga. Since I consider myself French I find this charming rather than offensive but then again, another secret desire of mine is that the guys take off their wet tee-shirts in exercise class. It appears however that he recently offended someone’s sensibilities with his tenue at the gym. That’s a fancy French word for what he wears or in this case – what he wasn’t wearing. Alas, the Mona Lisa stepped up to give him some fashion advice regarding his package. Learning that hitherto his wardrobe selections would be policed by his employer put him in a foul mood as his mojo was in jeopardy. Even a wet white tee-shirt contest among us girls didn’t cheer him up.

Ever empathetic, I really feel his pain on this one. It is not of little consequence what we wear. It’s one of the first decisions we make every morning and in my case, can affect my entire day. When I look great, I feel great. It’s as simple as that. However, one can’t realistically expect to look good all the time, although the Cub somehow manages to. I look good sometime, like everyone especially in the summer. Picture a recent summer day in August. I’m wearing a summer tan and my white suit because I’m meeting JuJu & JaJa after work for a restaurant week dinner en famille. They are ruthlessly critical of my appearance – I guess because there’s always the risk that you will become your mother. At 7:30 am I’m in the doctor’s office and a woman with purple hair tells me I look great. I reply that maybe I’ll find my guy today and she says, “No girl, he’s gonna find you!” What would I do without the random black woman in my life giving me unsolicited commentary? Later that day at work, the video tech (tall black dude with dreads) tells me I look great in white – “Miss – that suit really does look good on you but then again you look good all the time”. (Maybe I should learn to like guys in finance?) Alternately in the winter when I wear my Davy Crocket hat, I routinely get a compliment within 15 minutes of leaving my apartment. If you ever see this hat, you’ll realize that it’s the hat, not me that is being remarked because it’s so unusual. However, it must be acknowledged that there is an art to wearing clothing that suits you. It’s something I take seriously. Part of my cleansing of late has been to have only clothes in my closet that I love, to make a commitment to systematically only wear what looks great on me. Everyone could follow this rule and look great. People I haven’t seen in ages often say to me “well you’re looking good. “ No reason to be haters girls….

So it goes that the Porcupine needs to feel good in what he wears when he’s working – in his case, body-hugging spandex from head to toe, enhancing major body parts. Although I could tell him that honestly he would look good in whatever he wears, I know that he wants to make his own fashion choices as clearly the guy who wears different color sneakers doesn’t want to be dictated to.

This brings to mind Brian and I paying it forward by matchmaking our friends, although ill-advised, it is sometimes an irresistible urge that is well intentioned. I sincerely hope that my dear friend who I’ll call Matlock (recently widowed lawyer) finds love with one of my besties who calls herself Cher. There’s a good chance he’s interested as he coyly remarked that she “wore turquoise”. Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, I rest my case about the power of clothes.


One thought on “The Emperor’s New Clothes

  1. The Cub says:

    Puh-lease one of our many similarities is that our clothes are on always on point. Nance was prancing around the apartment at 8 AM in a onesie in prep for hot yoga. There’s a reason this blog’s namesake is the cub and the COUGAR. Rawrrrr.

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