June 17, 2021

My Wife Bought It

A friend asked me, “Have you been to Australia?”

“No,” I answered. “Why?”

He pointed to my feet and said, “The Aussies wear boots like those.”

“What can I say? My wife brought them home from the store one day, handed them to me and said, ‘Here, wear these. One on each foot, zippers to the inside.’ So I do.”

Quite often, my wife feels that amount of detail is necessary. Tee shirts, socks, and hats don’t need much explanation, but almost everything else requires direction.

Briefs: Optional, but if worn, one at a time, Y in front, change daily.

Pants: Never optional, short or long depends on other factors, always go on after briefs, before shoes.

Shirt: Occasionally optional. Based on an evaluation of my physique, unless there is a large body of water involved, should probably not be considered optional.

Shoes: Optional, but mandatory when socks are present.

I rarely buy clothes anymore. I don’t like shopping for clothes, so it suits me just fine if my wife wants to buy stuff for me to try on and take back if it doesn’t fit. Unfortunately as a result, I sometimes end up with stuff I know I’m not ever going to wear. If it fits, is a good buy, and it looks okay to her, chances are we’ll be keeping it. Just because I don’t like it may not be reason enough to take it back. Guys know what I mean. There have even been times when I’ve said, “Buy ’em if you like, but I ain’t wearing ’em,” and they still ended up in my closet. Sooner or later, I have a septic-tank-cleaning-type chore and they come in mighty handy. Usually it’s something like plaid shorts. I’m not saying there’s anything wrong with plaid shorts; they’re just not for me.

When it comes to deciding which combinations of clothing items to wear together I usually don’t need any more than a raised eyebrow to point me in the right direction. Statements like “Do you plan to change before we go?” or “Did you intend to wear that shirt with those slacks?” are a dead giveaway. Notice the choice of the word “slacks.” I don’t wear slacks. While I was growing up my dad wore pants. Once every ten years or so Mom would wear slacks, but Dad wore pants. I wear pants. I don’t care what other guys wear. They can call them slacks if they want to, dress slacks if they prefer. Dickers, Dockers, or Timmy-tom Tuckers, but I wear pants.

Once I learn the acceptable combinations of shirts and pants that I own, I’m usually pretty well set until I get a new shirt or a new pair of pants. In the past, when I’ve received a gift of a shirt and a pair of shorts together, that makes it pretty easy. Since they were purchased together, the odds are in my favor that they can be worn together–I go with that.

I usually don’t have much trouble matching a shirt to my jeans, because just about any shirt can be worn with jeans. I know I really should have said “blue denim pants,” but if I had, you either wouldn’t have known what I was talking about–or you would assume that I’m just weird. I also could have called them by their real name, “dungarees,” and had all the anti-dung people up in arms. One person I know even calls them “sheepherders” (a family tradition I think).

There is no real reason why any shirt goes with jeans, and it wasn’t always so, but ever since West Side Story even the tee shirt has been acceptable. After all, who can argue fashion sense with a New York City street gang that spontaneously bursts into song and dance at almost any possible situation?

That’s why I wear my jeans as often as I can. They make life so much simpler. I wonder what they call them in Australia. They have a lot of sheep in Australia. Maybe that’s where the sheepherder thing came from.

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