Sunday, January 23, 2011

Enough is enough.

The other day, I went to a very fancy gym. The type of gym that has a 6-month waiting list, classes you've never heard of and Keihl's in the bathroom next to designer sinks*.

And I found myself standing for quite a while near the entrance watching people come in for their morning workout. I quickly noticed a pattern amongst the members. It was a simple pattern, really. They all looked exactly the freaking same.
This website is a joke, right? RIGHT?!
 Slim-hipped women with Botoxed foreheads, perfect hair and neurotic children marched in, one after another, like a stream of specially designed robots.
We are not dudes. We are hot chicks.
Their uniform was a loose but clingy T-shirt over black leggings atop Minnetonka boots, accessorized with subtle but obviously expensive jewelry. Even the children all looked the same: scared looking, red-headed boys who could use a cupcake, a roll in the dirt and an adventure.

My hair is not perfect. My hips are not particularly slim. And my workout outfit made me laugh when I put it on that morning. For a brief moment, I felt less than these women somehow. Then I simply felt alone.
For your viewing pleasure, an irrelevant picture of ducklings.
I searched in vain for a friendly face but indifferent gazes slid over me. I told myself that these were, in all likelihood, kind, intelligent and lovely women. That their children were probably happy, funny kids with lovely lives.

And while that is probably true, I still felt somehow desolate in a sea of bored, desperate people.

Now, I should have prefaced this little story by stating the following:

Most of my teenage rules of fashion have long since been discarded (ie never wear pink with red, never mix metals or leather) but a few remain.

-Never wear more than 3 items of the same color, unless a 3-piece suit is involved**.

-Never wear anything with a cutesy saying or image embroidered on it, especially not holiday related kitschery.

-Never wear sweatpants that bunch at the ankle (at least not in public).

-Never ask me what I think about your outfit if you don't want my honest opinion.

Simply a few rules that I dress by. And on that day, in that gym, amonst all those women, I saw an older woman wearing bright red sneakers, bright red bunchy sweatpants and matching sweatshirt complete with embroidered snowmen on it, bright red sunglasses and, to top it off, bright red lipstick.

She was laughing her head off. And had she taken the time to ask me what I thought of her outfit, I would have honestly said, "it's bloody brilliant."

But of course, she was too busy guffawing at whatever the person on the other end of her cell phone call was saying to give a shit about what I thought.
Image courtesy of Advanced Style. Note: this is not the woman I saw.
Now, I had planned to have here a long conclusion paragraph about why she was such a welcome sight and how important it is that we treasure the people like her in our lives. But, really, what it comes down to is this: people like her exist. And that is enough. It may even be wonderful.

*I find it very odd that such a thing exists.
**And even then exercise caution.


  1. I love this story. I love her. And I love bunchy sweatpants.
    Also, kids don't belong at the gym. My personal opinion.