Please Dress Appropriately

Does that even mean anything anymore?

Someone recently posited that if a person wore a neon pink micro mini skirt and leopard prints blouse while sporting a beard, then naturally other people were going to look  at them. And, furthermore, that person wanted to be looked at, or they wouldn’t dress in a manner bound to attract attention.

Um, maybe?

But can’t I just get dressed and go out of the house without worrying if somebody is going to make assumptions about my genitals, my religion, my politics based on what I’m wearing? Isn’t that an awful heavy load to expect one pair of plaid shorts to carry?

I am mad for plaid. Does that mean I’m preppy? A closet Scot? Does it suggest I have a thing for burly lumberjacks or mopey grunge musicians? I mean, I just like plaid and I don’t care if it makes my ass look wider than it absolutely has to.

When I get dressed for the day, I’m already thinking about the weather, what I’m going to do, if I’m going to work or not, if I’m expecting hot flashes, do I need pockets, have I shaved my legs recently or do I need to wear a long skirt and the hair on my legs is so blonde why do I even care? (I rarely have occasion to ask strangers to touch my legs, so the whole issue is moot.) Will I be presenting myself in a professional capacity, or can I wear yoga pants? Stuff like that.

But if I want to wear something shiny and blue, does it mean I feel theatrical and want everyone to look at me? Or does it mean the shiny blue thing has an elastic waistband and is clean and was on the top of the pile? Maybe it belonged to my grandmother, the world champion pole dancer, and I wear it every year on her birthday in her honor. Maybe I was so depressed when I woke up that putting on something shiny and blue was the only way I could stand to get out of bed and out of the house without self-medicating myself with vodka and Ho-Hos.

Are there any hard and fast rules any longer? I, personally, do not want to see your underwear. Not your bra straps, not your boxers, not the whale tail of your thong. I don’t want to see your vajayjay or your twig and berries. I do not want to see you in your pajamas at the grocery store.

I’d avoid wearing white to somebody else’s wedding unless specifically asked to do so. At a job interview, your clothes should be clean and without holes, and so should your shoes.

Other than that, ARE there any rules? Do we even need them? Do you need to know someone’s gender identity before you can admire their shoes (and perhaps ask, very politely, where they got them?)


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