Thursday, December 17, 2009

Day 91: Can A Girl Wear Red and Be Bored at the Same Time?


I think I'm bored. Are you bored?

While I've told my share of fibs over the years, I am, generally speaking, appallingly honest. It's cost me friendships, messed with past jobs, and probably not been so helpful for my writing career. I tend to act impulsively and share too much--something I get from my mom (the sharing part). (See--even this is going to get me into trouble. It's okay, though. We always tease her about it. She loves personal stories--ours and others. Hm. Wonder how that affected me?) But it's not a particularly professional way for a fiction writer to behave.

Careers, images. They're careful constructs. (Let's all say "Tiger Woods" together, shall we?) Most artists (I use the term very loosely) keep their innermost selves intensely guarded--and for good reason. We're quivering mollusks inside our shells and so the peeks at our innards need to be brief and structured. Emotional overexposure--and this counts for all people, not just artists--can be a dangerous, costly thing. I don't think this will surprise anyone. The difference between artists is the degree to which they protect themselves. Tiger Woods = Astronomical Self-Protection (okay, cut the snickering!),  Me = Not So Much.

So it's with some trepidation that I tell you how I'm feeling about my Walmart adventure. Feeling is a good thing, I think. Feeling is critical, I hear, to being an actual human.

I'm feeling conflicted and weary at the same time. I wonder if it's not that I'm bored, but that I've adapted. The human capacity for adaptability is stunning, and is one of our greatest gifts.

I didn't really expect this project to be about personal transformation. Seriously--who would ever start such an apparently ridiculous project in order to experience transformation. As I've mentioned before, I'm coming to see that clothes do not "make the man," so to speak. They might make the far-off view of the man a little more pleasant or interesting or off-putting or whatever. But there's a heck of a lot more at play when it comes to how we perceive ourselves and how others perceive us.

Just a few characteristics to consider: gender, body image, physiology, attitude, race, social status, intelligence, faith (or lack thereof), childhood, education, attitudes....So many variables knit together to make up the various view of who we are.
Forgive the abrupt tone change, but if I start exploring all these now, I'll be here for months. So. Many things to think about. I'm not bored anymore.

Are there things you'd like me to address here? Questions you want to ask? Sharing is one of my specialties, you know!

Tuesday's ensemble:

Ah, yes. One of my four RL cotton sweaters. They're so handy, so comfy. Inevitably, when I where one, someone says, "Ralph Lauren at Walmart? I don't think so." And then I have to explain the whole Sam's connection. Frankly, I don't know that I could have done this project for three months trying to get by on Walmart purchases exclusively. I would have had to resort to costuming. No, really. There's too much cognitive dissonance between the person I am inside and what I wear on the outside if I have to wear clothes that 1) I dislike instensely and 2) Violate every style rule I've learned in forty-something years. The whole style-rule thing is critical here. I suppose I could have limited myself to the mothership from the beginning--but I would have known the answer to my primary question (see blog title above) before I even started.

Sam's Club is....Um, I'm not going to write about Sam's today. I have much to say and am even going there this afternoon for some non-clothing supplies. Soon. Maybe tomorrow.

Ralph Lauren sweater: $21; Nine West jeans: $18; Earrings: $7; Earth Spirit shoes: $30
Total: $76

Have a blessed rest of the day. And if you're not Google-following me, I hope you will. I love to know who's along for the ride!


  1. We're quivering mollusks inside our shells and so the peeks at our innards need to be brief and structured.

    Since I turned 50 this year, my doctor told me it's time for a colonoscopy, which I hear is not as fun as it sounds. And although it will peek at my innards and is definitely structured, it will not be brief.

    BTW, I love you in sweaters!

  2. Hey beautiful,

    I like the idea of how much self-protection is needed for writers. I find myself debating this all the time. I'm extremely open and then not at all about other things. Strange, but I think you hit it exactly right -- the mollusk thing! As for boredom, I think I know how you feel -- I think in any big project, you hit a wall about three or four months in and then push to the other side. I'm thinking talking about clothes will lead you to lots of other great things -- issues of class interest me as do issues concerning why people are attracted to certain aesthetics. Why do I hate Ed Hardy and my sister and some of my friends love it? I love your blog and you're not boring me, just for the record!

  3. Huh, see, I tend to share too much myself and I always wondered if that was extremely odd for a writer. I have a few writer friends and a lot of them seem to be all curled up in their shells and here I am running around telling my life story to some checkout lady at Shnucks! I'm happy to hear that I'm not alone! I'm told that honest like that in your work, to a point anyway, is actually really good. (Actually, I believe I heard that from Pinckney! So you probably know that one!)

    As far as bored, I think it's the season. The leaves are all dead now and there is no snow to replace them, so we are kind of in weather limbo. It's JUST cold enough to make being outside no fun, and I hate being suck INside for too long. This is usually when I like to wander furniture stores. It's that or model homes. There is something voyeuristic about both that I get a kick out of. I'm currently working on a short story about the subject. :-)

    If you ever wanna give it a try I am always up for company!

  4. Usually when I get bored I change my hair. (And it's about that time here soon!)

    Definitely continue sharing the introspection caused by this project. I love seeing the ensembles you put together, but definitely also enjoy the thought processes you've shared along the way as well!

    Sharing. Over sharing. Just don't under-share! : ) (I hope this makes sense - it's 12:30 & I really should be sleeping instead of reading & writing blogs, but if I don't write before bed I can't sleep! Catch 22!)

  5. Well, I'm only a writer wannabe so maybe it doesn't matter that I have severely malfunctioning filters which lead to over-sharing, rampant sarcasm at times and lots of eye rolling from my off spring.

    Please keep over sharing with us. :-)