If you’re a woman, then you know that shopping for jeans is never fun. It’s certainly not something I’ve ever enjoyed. If I can, I prefer to shop online and hope that my order fits. I’d rather avoid the whole standing undressed in a fitting room under those garish, fluorescent lights. You know what I’m talking about…that horrible light that emphasizes any and all imperfections. I mean, you can have a mostly positive body image before entering a dressing room, but afterward, forget it! My weight happens to be fairly in line with my height, and I exercise regularly; however, after spending time in a dressing room, I sometimes feel like I need to subsist on water and celery for a day or two.
The terrible lighting is just one aspect of the whole unpleasant experience. I don’t know why, but I can never find another pair of jeans that fits the same as the exact pair purchased at an earlier date. They’re either way too long, have a weird cut, or so tight I can’t breathe. Who, exactly, are clothing companies making these jeans for anyway? Barbie and her friends? In the bell curve of women buying jeans, I just don’t see the mean group being 6 feet tall and 100 pounds. But, hey, that’s just my perspective.
Anyway, the reason I’m rambling on about jeans is that I needed some. I wear all kinds of jeans: straight-leg, boot-cut, and occasionally skinny jeans (with a lot of stretch). But, I mainly wear the classic fit, straight-leg variety. I want to be comfortable, and moving easily and breathing are pluses–especially when I’m feeding sheep, collecting eggs, or walking our dog, Dash. So, when I found myself in Downtown Roanoke with some extra time on my hands, I thought, I should shop local. There’s a clothing store in the Market Square where I’ve bought jeans a number of times in the past, and they usually carry what I want.
Feeling good about my decision, I walked into the store and began to look around, gradually making my way toward the table in the center of the room with stacks of neatly folded jeans. Of course, they’re never labeled in normal sizes, for instance, 4, 6, 8 or even small, medium, or large. No, it’s some crazy stuff like: 26, 27, 30—(insert eye roll here). Nevertheless, it had been a while since my last purchase, and I couldn’t remember my double digit size. I was standing there looking somewhat bewildered and maybe a little lost in my faded, straight-leg jeans, cowboy boots, and the least amount of jewelry I could wear, when a cute, trendy saleswoman sauntered over and smiled. She was wearing dark, skinny jeans, stylish ankle boots, and fashionable, dangle earrings. She asked if she could help. I smiled and explained the style of jeans I was looking for and mentioned that I didn’t want anything too skinny as I have a little bit of a derrière. She smiled knowingly and said that she was curvy, too, assuring me that she had a number of jeans with “nice stretch” that would work well—her favorites.
Feeling relieved that she understood me, I headed to the fitting room and….sigh, started getting undressed. The saleswoman arrived a minute or two later with three pairs of jeans. I held up the first pair, which seemed on the small side. I looked at the tag: skinny jeans. Although I had said that I didn’t mind one pair of skinny jeans, I immediately had visions of the scene in the film, “Eat, Pray, Love.” The one where Julia Roberts’ character has to buy new jeans, because she’s been living in Italy for three months, enjoying wonderful food, and gaining weight. In the scene, she’s lying on the floor, desperately trying to button her jeans with the help of a friend. Well, I didn’t have a friend with me today, and I certainly wasn’t going to lie on the floor. I was either going to pull up these jeans and they were going to fit, or they weren’t. I tried them on. They were snug, but I could still breathe while sitting; apparently, “stretch” does makes a difference between consciousness and passing out from oxygen deprivation. After a bit of a struggle getting the clingy jeans off, I was ready for some nice straight-leg jeans. Trying to avoid the mirror, I reached for the next pair and held them up. Narrowing my eyes, I thought, these look a lot smaller than the last pair. I glanced at the inside label. What in the world? Oh Lawd, I thought, she’s gone and brought me a pair of ULTRA skinny jeans. Which made me wonder, exactly what part of the, “I’ve got junk in my trunk” conversation did she not understand? There was no way I was trying on these jeans. So, I picked up the last pair, which was—wait for it… more skinny jeans. Apparently, the nice saleswoman and I had a miscommunicatiom. Or, maybe, HER skinny jeans were ultra. You know, cutting off the circulation of oxygen to her brain and impairing her ability to process simple sentences. At this point, I knew I needed to get dressed and just go out there and look for myself.
As I finished up dressing, the saleswoman asked if everything was okay. Standing there in my classic fit jeans and cowboy boots, I pulled back the curtain. I asked her, again, about the straight-leg or bootcut jeans. She paused for a second, averted her eyes, and said in a low voice, “We don’t have any. They really aren’t in style right now.” I looked at her, confusion covering my face. After a moment, I smiled, thanked her, and left.
Here’s the thing: I was obviously in the wrong store. In what universe do straight-leg or classic fit jeans go out of style? Well, anyway, they’re very much in style on Green Hill Farm. And, when I get home, I’m going to shop the way I like to shop for jeans: fully dressed, online, with a cup of tea, and no fluorescent lights. But first, I’m heading next door to Chocolate Paper, a lovely stationary store that sells wonderful chocolate candy. I think I deserve a caramel truffle with sea salt…maybe even two. After all, it’s good to shop local. 😉
Categories: Reflections on Farm Life