in defense of kicks

—I feel okay about posting this now that I know ‘What Not To Wear’ has already aired its series finale—

If you were to ask me to describe my personal style I’d go with one of two options: bartender in an ill-fated NBC sitcom; or just finished a game of pick-up basketball chic. I don’t know why you’d ever ask me to do such a thing, but I’ve read enough women’s magazines to know that’s a real question that is asked sometimes… in certain circles.

I have a lot of very stylish friends. You know the people who look like they just walk in to Banana Republic and mannequins strip off their own outfits and hand them over? Yeah, I have friends like that. My best friend effortlessly throws together outfits that would make me look like some sort of crazy hobo, but she looks cool.

I’m not saying I can’t get dressed up. Hell, ask me to be in your wedding and I’ll look the part of dainty bridesmaid. I’ll wear pink. I’ll wear sparkly nail polish. I’ll curl my hair. I can play the role. I just don’t have that natural style. The effort I put in to just dressing appropriately for work five days a week takes it all out of me and I still usually end up wearing jeans on Fridays — Casual Friday, right?

The number of tank tops and gray v-neck t-shirts I own could only be classified as ridiculous. I have at least twice as many pairs of Nikes as heels and I’m pretty sure I should own stock in Rainbow sandals.

I take a lot of heat from friends about what I choose to wear out. Maybe it’s deserved. Maybe purple suede air force ones really aren’t meant for bachelorette parties. Maybe “jorts” aren’t okay to wear downtown, even if you proudly claim your Pickens County roots while you wear them. I get it. I get it, people. I just don’t care.

You guys! We follow a lot of rules already —  traffic laws; societal laws; airport restrictions. I respect rules. My parents will verify that I was a dream teenager to raise because of this (How hard did you just roll your eyes, mom and dad? HOW HARD?). I’m not really kidding, though. Honestly I think, in general, life is easier and better with rules.

But fashion rules? Seriously, that’s just not going to happen. Don’t mix black and brown? Are you being real right now? Sometimes black and brown look awesome together. Don’t wear white after labor day? I know I’m from the South and some things are supposed to be sacred — but the weather doesn’t change at labor day. It’s still summer for a solid month afterwards. How is a federal holiday the arbitrary cut-off for all our unpigmented clothing? Don’t wear horizontal stripes? OH MY GOD. If we’re not supposed to wear horizontal stripes then why is everyone still making things with horizontal stripes? Don’t wear jorts if you’re over 18? Honestly, I’m not sure that’s a rule. It might just be a thing my friends say when they’re embarrassed by me. Really though, I’ll wear jorts as long as I want to! My legs are 40 inches long, dammit!

Listen, I promise you can count on me to be a safe driver. You can count on me to cut all my liquids down to three ounces or less before I arrive at the airport. You can trust me to keep a secret. You can count on me not to steal things or cheat at sports… And, more than anything else, you can trust that I won’t be offended if you choose to wear purple suede Air Force Ones to my wedding one day… but you may want to clear it with my mom first.

 

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