I was recently packing for yet another trip, this one complicated by trying to decide what, from my limited collection of camera-ready clothes ("camera-ready," in this case, meaning 'having a pattern that doesn't induce seizures in any eventual watchers and is not white or black') would be suitable for both a taped interviewy thing and a taped rock concert, and as I was trying stuff on, I found myself asking the eternal question:
"Does this make me look fat?"
Luckily, I was only asking myself, not pestering my long-suffering husband. (He likes to make himself scarce while I'm packing; he doesn't need to increase his store of profanity.) We have a deal: I don't ask him if I'm fat, and he doesn't ask me where his wallet and keys are. (We break this deal, like glass, in cases of emergency.)
At the moment of asking, though, I stopped for a minute. Why is "fat" automatically the one thing that must be avoided? I'm not talking "need to be airlifted from house for medical attention," fat, I'm talking "fifteen extra pounds from a crappy winter" fat. (Not that the degree really matters.) Why, of all the aesthetic choices that can be made, is "slim" the one that has to be prioritized? Why am I not asking myself, first and foremost, "Does this make me look unhappy?" or "Does this make me look boring?" or "Does this make me look fashion-victimy?" or "Does this make me look like a visiting space alien, and not in the sexy lamé-bikini-and-boots way?"
So I stopped asking the "fat" question, and started asking the "unhappy" one, and this is one of the things where the answer was "No, it doesn't make you look unhappy. Quite the reverse!" But: does it make me look TOO HAPPY, aka crazy? (I already know that it doesn't make me look slimmer, and that's okay.)
Here's a close-up:
It's a skirt that used to be a plain circle, without a waistband, and recently I got tired of skirts without waistbands, so I took it apart and added one. (With quite a bit of cursing and muttering, I might add.) The fabric is from Ikea; someday I'm going to walk into someone's house wearing this and match all their couch cushions. Then it WILL make me look crazy, but I'll be happy, so I don't care.
I'm NOT quite sure this is actually camera-ready (stripes might be bad, right?) but if it does end up airing (and yes yes I will give you all details when I know them) I'm sure they'll post some kind of warning.