The high school world of scraped lockers, scuffed linoleum, and Sharpie-emblazoned picnic tables provided an outlet for me. I suppose you are all anticipating a pro-educational story, an inspirational tale of how that one teacher who made us create Odyssey themed board games changed my life forever. Maybe I went back to visit said teacher, glitter-glued poster board tucked under my grateful elbow. Maybe I hugged her, and she wept with joy that I had made something of myself. A real-life mommy blogger! And she helped!
No such luck, friends. This is an epic journey of wordy fashion. This is how my desperate attempts to keep up with the Seniors resulted in a skewed perception of what it meant to make a statement…
Once upon a time, a young girl ventured into the dank, dark hallways of a metropolitan public school. Clad with only a modest cardigan and purple backpack, she tread carefully lest she attract the cruel attention of well-dressed peers ready to pounce on her misguided clothing choices. One day, a neighbor girl extended a friendly greeting. “Onward to the local mall,” she declared! Dressed in head-to-toe boring, the lass obliged. Her mother drove the Nissan chariot, stopping gently so that the young girls could gracefully tuck and roll.
The marble castle smelled of salty pretzels and teenage hormones. Scared by this foreign land, the outcast shuffled cautiously behind her confident friend, twisting through mazes of skateboard-wielding boys, up glass-encased elevators, down dimly lit corridors until they reached the beaming entrance to the Holy Land of Cool. It was Abercrombie & Fitch, luring the innocent with black and white photos of muscled models and the overwhelming aroma of cheap cologne. She felt the popularity lingering in the air, hovering overhead, and whispering in her frumpy ear, “Thou must shell out cash and make a statement“. She dropped her overalls at the dressing room’s swinging door, wriggling into distressed-cotton glory. Marveling at herself in the navel-baring, small-chest-hugging shirt, the maiden felt enlightened to the true meaning of “Baby Tee”. She read the words splattered across the front in spray-paint, Doll Face. Without any clue what this trendy language meant, she took a cue from the adventuresome travelers before her and guessed. Surely doll face must translate into vogue or chic or perhaps even classy in these parts.
As the sun rose on Monday morn, the fresh-faced princess pranced into First Period. Surrounded by hand-me-down peasants, she held her royal chin high, pushing her Abercrombie-covered bosom forth for maximum attention. By lunch’s hour, she found her social status plated in gold and awaiting her arrival at a previously exclusive table. Swarms of pretty, popular folk conversed with her. Finally! Finally they could appreciate her, even if they mostly wanted to borrow her rambling shirt.
And so it continued over four years and a crap-ton of moons, that the princess lived by the honorable code: Thou shalt rock thy loudest shirt! Crank up the volume dear sir! Her “Half Nelson, Full Nelson, Any Nelson Will Do” shirt made a statement…that her last name was Nelson…and that she appreciated the art of wrestling. Her “Jesus Is My Homeboy” shirt was a timeless choice for Wednesday night youth group. She found the most inner-joy in outwardly announcing her bottom’s apple shape by way of sweatpants that read “Juicy” across the rear. Her friends joined the cotton conversation with poetic pieces so expensive they sacrificed hefty allowances and weekly lunch money. They wore a uniform statement which made the statement, “Recognize! We are making a statement!”
But as the story goes, the lady’s luck was soon to run out. As she fled the confines of her childhood home for the outside world of collegiate dorms and beer pong, the golden glow of Lord Abercrombie faded in the distance. Down and poor, she could no longer pay the six pence and fifty-eight dollars for an unique, mass-replicated Wordy Tee. Instead of clever phrases or innuendo, she wore her downtrodden heart on her plain, black sleeve. Once royal, the girl now fell from elaborate graphic elegance into the Gap (clearance rack). She fell silent, burdened with rent and car payments, not so much as a peep from her stoic, solid-hued shirt.
She worked as peasants do, hardly saying so much as “I am working and unhappy about it” through the scritch and scratch of her polyester apron. Eventually the memories of her scream-happy wardrobe dwindled, and she became content in her bland bureau. Through cow fields and child-birth and into The Motherhood, the poor lass felt it best to keep her wardrobe simple and quiet. No respectable woman grocery shops in “Baby Got Back” sweatpants. No honorable mother would dare sport the scarlet “MILF” tee.
Halt! Wait! Cease & assist! This is no ending fit for a blogging tale!
Far from the orange stools of the city lunchroom, the girl now found herself in the blandest cottage in all the land. Plain walls spread cold and flat across beams, sucking character and charm from all who entered. As her gentle babe napped, she happened upon a gift from her mother. A framed StoryPerson shone from the depths of a cardboard box. She pulled the artwork close, it’s lengthy sentences sprawling around colorful stick figures! Thou shalt rock thy loudest art! Crank up the volume, dear sir! Not now, imbecile. The babeth slumbers!