I learned to drive while growing up in a very small town. Like, the kind of small town Carrie Underwood sings about with back roads, Jesus, and dating the varsity quarterback. We had a "drive your tractor to school" day once a year. We had ONE STOPLIGHT.
Needless to say, we didn't have a lot of traffic. Because we didn't have a lot of people.
So when I moved to Chicago last month....... Well, I think you see where I'm going with this. There were a couple of things they must have glossed over back in driving school. Things like:
1) I don't know how to parallel park. I think they tried to teach this at some point? Maybe there was a video on it? I remember there were orange cones, but I don't remember having to actually park.. parallel-y. Instead I grew up where we had these things called "parking lots". And nobody ever held up traffic trying to squeeze their mini-van into a five foot slot next to the sidewalk.
2) The cab drivers play chicken with the pedestrians. And everyone is weirdly okay with it. No one seems worried that their about to die.
3) People honk. A lot. Mostly at me, because I drive like a grandma.
I wouldn't call myself a nervous flyer, I'm more of a nervous airport go-er. Because airport security has a special way of making me feel like an international terrorist. Not on purpose, it's not as if they're eyeing me up and down with a couple of pitch forks. The majority of TSA agents that I've met were actually very nice. But they have a job to do, and they take it seriously. Which is a good thing, because if there's anything that would make me a nervous flyer, it would be some crazy guy on my plane.
But - let's be real here - if you think I know how to make a bomb out of a bottle of shampoo, you're giving me too much credit. I write my own fashion blog and keep selfies saved on my phone, I'm not the kind of gal who would dump my salon-brand-argon-oil-no-frizz shampoo down the drain just to start concocting a missile. I'm WAAAY too vain for that.
But TSA figured, you know, better safe than sorry. Who knows? The next world renowned international terrorist could be a twenty-six year old girl from the Midwest traveling with fancy shampoo and wearing a Calvin Klein dress.
Because that was my real mistake. Wearing that dress to the airport. Who wears a dress to the airport? Beyonce?
I'm sure my dad wasn't the first parent to tell his teenage daughter "no" when she asked him for a pair of ripped-up, faded, holy jeans. "They have holes in them," he'd say. "Who would pay seventy dollars for a pair of jeans that have holes in them? I can't even donate jeans like that to Goodwill."
Dads. They just don't understand fashion.
I bought my first and only pair of "holy jeans" for the same reason that I bought a velour tracksuit (circa 2003) and a whole bunch of big sunglasses: because Jessica Simpson wore holy jeans and tracksuits and big sunglasses and she was Jessica Simpson. She was married to Nick Lachey. She was in that movie Dukes of Hazzard. She thought tuna might be chicken, which at the time, I thought held a solid argument. The can really does say, "chicken of the sea".
So when I saw Jessica Simpson wearing jeans with holes in them, I decided that I had to go out and buy some jeans with holes in them. Because Jessica Simpson made them look chic. And effortless. Like she was fashion-y, but she wasn't trying too hard to be fashion-y. It just happened. She just woke up, threw on whatever was laying around, and BOOM! Instant pin on Pinterest.
Of course Pinterest didn't exist back then.) So I didn't know what kind of "holy jeans" to buy. I had to rely on episodes of Newlyweds and the Juniors department at JcPenny to guide me on my style choices. Which is how I ended up with my very own pair of holy jeans - and they didn't come from my attempt at spending hours with scissors, sand paper and a copy of Seventeen magazine that featured an article about using sand paper and scissors to rip up your jeans. (This was a real article, by the way. I remember, because I asked my dad if he had any sand paper laying around in the garage. #JustGirlyThings)
I don't know how to French braid. Fishtail braid?
Regardless, I can only do ONE braid. The easy one. The one with three strands of hair and a normal amount of fingers. No YouTube tutorials required.
I don't know if being a halfwit when it comes to hair is all that uncommon. It seems like when I talk to... well, basically anyone who can French braid their own hair, they seem shocked that I don't know how do something so simple. Like I'm telling them that I don't know how to use a comb. "REALLY?" they say, as I explain how my hairstyle skills rival that of a Stay-At-Home Dad's. "But it's SO EASY!" they say, and I feel like I must be doing something wrong. I must be making it more complicated than it needs to be. Maybe I'm adding too much hair. Maybe I need more fingers.
The day that I learned the easy, no-frills, nothing-fancy-about-it braid was a big day for me. I think I was ten or eleven. Up until that day, I can remember taking two strands of hair and twisting them around until it resembled... I don't know, something, a pretzel twist maybe?... and then trying to convince people that it was a braid. But not like, a regular braid. Like a COOL braid.
Today's post is about pencil skirts. Because sometimes you want to look "professional", but also, still kind of hot. Mostly hot. Like a Victoria Secret model posing on the cover of Cosmopolitan to feature a story called: "How to look 'professional', but also, still kind of hot".
My first pencil skirt came from an impulse buy during college after my friend asked me what I was wearing to the Big Annual Career Fair that week (because, you know, "networking opportunities"... also, free pens) and said that if I wanted to be taken 'seriously', I probably shouldn't wear "jeans and, like, a nice shirt".
(Also, the cute guy from my business class was going to be there and so far he'd only seen me in UGG boots and an 8 AM messy bun. This would give him the opportunity to see me as more than just a consistently bad hair day - "I'm also a classy, level headed chick who kind of has her life figured out after college"... more importantly, it was my excuse to wear a skirt in front of him. Like I said, networking opportunities.)
I used to think that if I wore "boyfriend" jeans, people might think that I actually had a boyfriend. Isn’t that why they call them boyfriend jeans? Because maybe your boyfriend left them at your house and - instead of putting on your OWN jeans that morning (you know, the ones designed for your female body type that actually fit) - you were like, “Oh, maybe I’ll just wear my BOYFRIEND jeans”.
Because that makes sense. Why wear your own clothes when you can wear your boyfriend's clothes that were wadded up in a ball on your bedroom floor?
At least that was how I'd always imagined it. Like Boyfriend spent the night, and we woke up together and maybe I left the house before he did - you know, for bagels or something - and I just slipped on his jeans because they looked soo comfy. And because I wanted the world to know that I had a boyfriend, and that maybe he was still at my place, and that maybe he wasn't wearing pants.
This doesn't make sense for a few reasons:
1) It's weird. Why am I stealing his jeans? Why wouldn't I just steal his sweatshirt like a normal girlfriend?
2) If I wanted to be "comfy", why wouldn't I throw on sweatpants? Even if they were "Boyfriend's" sweatpants? Sweatpants are exponentially more comfy than any form of jeans that have ever existed, even men's jeans that are baggy and have extra room in the crotch area.
3) Men's jeans are baggy and have extra room in the crotch area.
Seriously. Even if Boyfriend and I were the same size - and I'm going to level with you here, boyfriends and I have never been the same size - his jeans would not be comfortable. Jeans are not soft and blanket-y like over-sized sweatpants. They're made of denim. You're wearing baggy denim. How many times have you said to yourself, "Gee. I can't wait to go home and throw on my baggy denim sweatpants...".... oh, right. Never.
Because that's not a thing.