Sunday, May 01, 2005

In Which Our Heroine Takes Her Snark To The Park

There's nothing like the first really warm day of spring to short-circuit the tiny vestigial scrap of sartorial judgment normally displayed by the average citizen. To Queen's Park today to goggle aghast at the pageant of ill-attired humanity gambolling heedless in the sunshine.

A girl swanned past my bench on her lover's arm, proudly sporting a brand-new pair of varicolored denim hotpants that could have been designed by an international committee of experts hell-bent on making her thighs look like Christmas hams.

Bare torsos teemed on all sides, ranging in form from the consumptively hypotrophic to the explosively beer-engorged, but all partaking of the same refulgent pallor. Awesome promontories of gut overhung waistbands male and female alike.

Pregnant women billowed by in sheer chiffon pavilions that advertised their gigantic knickers to all comers.

Piercy punky 30ish hipster couples trundled along ironically pushing their goth-prams. [Priority Memo To Couples: Little Jack does not count as a hipster accessory. You have not retained your Alternacred post partum. Having unfathomably chosen to have a baby, you must now accept the reality that you have ipso facto made yourselves parents. Sorry.]

Even children weren't immune. Flocks of little girls disguised as strawberry milkshakes swarmed the middle distance. (What exactly do these parents think will happen if their children fail to exhibit the received chromatic gender markers? Do they fear their daughters will be drafted? Turned into tiny lesbians?)

Blessed respite arrived in the form of a Tibetan monk, of all things, demurely clad in brown robe and matching pantaloons. It may not have been hot off the catwalk, but at least it didn't make him look like a road accident.

People. Is it literally impossible to put on clothes that actually flatter your form, whatever that may be? I'm no body-nazi; I'm not saying 'You must be skinny and perfect and indistinguishable from Kate Moss.' Far from it. Let your form be whatever you are comfortable with, within reasonable health parameters. What I am saying, sternly but lovingly, is 'You must wear clothes that do not make you look awful.'

I'm serious about this. We each have an aesthetic existence in the world, whether we like it or not. It is incumbent on us to recognize and take responsibility for it, for our own good and the good of those around us. It is in your hands whether you adorn your surroundings or disfigure them.

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