Frailty, Thy Name Is Fashion

Shakespeare said it of women, because, in his opinion, women were devoid of reason, ruled instead by their emotions and passions. But frailty’s name is not “woman,” it’s FASHION!

Things are said, often innocently, that scar one for life. Twenty years ago, while taking pictures at the old Conga Room, a friend said to me: “You’re so cute, with your fanny pack,” pointing at the blue bag that I had wrapped around my waist, completely out of convenience, as I wanted my hands free to take as many pictures of the artists on stage as possible. She’s my friend on Facebook to this day, most likely with no recollection of that exchange, but there’s no leather “belt bag” that I see advertised on Maire Claire (at a $600 price tag) that won’t bring back that conversation. And that’s because… what is the difference?! Other than the material, I had a very similar thing wrapped around me on that night that I was called “so cute” with a tone of “so ridiculous.” Ohhh, but Ashya (the brand) is supposed to be so clever now!?

Another friend called me “matronly” once. Matronly. I looked up the meaning, again, just now: “Denoting, relating to, or characteristic of a conservatively dressed older married woman, especially one with a somewhat heavy build.” I wasn’t married when she called me that. I haven’t been married for 23 years! Conservative? When have I given a f*** about rules? (Well, just now, by not spelling out the word “fuck.” Damn it.) And the “heavy build”? That’s as of late, but I was built just fine back then.

Frailty, thy name is FASHION! People make assumptions about your person based only on the clothes you can afford. And crap that was once ridiculous comes around to become a full-page magazine ad instead. But the PTSD… that lasts forever.

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