‘I say, beware of all enterprises that require new clothes, and not rather a new wearer of clothes.’ Henry David Thoreau
This is my favorite shirt. I love it more now than the first time I put it on. I wish I had a meter to tell me which things will turn out like this shirt. When it was new, it was a nice medium-weight denim, several shades darker. It was probably laundered six or seven times before it revealed its beauty to me. It faded and softened, calling out to me every time I open my closet. Buttons have been replaced a few times, buttonholes repaired, tucks restitched, and today, an iron-on patch applied to the right side just below the yoke. The lace on the yoke has a small, well, maybe good-sized snag. I don’t think anyone will ever know.
I fear it will wear out one day, as my favorites have done before, before too much longer. Sadly, it’s like trying plug a hole in a dam, when you plug one leak, another starts. I guess I will just love it as long as it lasts.
Not too long ago Bud and I spent some time waiting to get our taxes done. Anxious waiting is the best kind. Several other couples were sharing our misery. They were sitting far enough away that I couldn’t initiate a conversation like I often do, so I had to content myself with giving them a thorough inspection, since their conversation held little interest. I admired the woman’s sweater of cheery buttercup yellow, well-made, and obviously high quality. It fit her perfectly. She saw me admiring her and smiled. What a nice lady. I’d like to visit with her.
Whispering, I pointed her out to Bud, “I love that woman’s sweater.”
Bud gave a cursory look, then commented, “I like her husband’s shirt.”
I hadn’t even noticed. The man was wearing the same Walmart shirt Bud was sporting, both a little worse for the wear.
I just get dirty. I don’t mean my shoes have little smudges. I look like I fell in the garbage every day. I don’t understand it. When I worked, I dressed and left the house just like everyone else. By the time I got to work, I had stepped in something, spilled coffee on myself, or rubbed up against something and gotten a spot on my clothes. As the day went on, I was sure to end up with ink spots on my hands and/or clothes and have a few spots. I sponged the worst off, but still got home a mess.
I wear my oldest clothes in the yard and make no effort to stay clean. After a few hours of digging, hauling, moving rocks, and planting, I look like I have been rolling in the mud. That doesn’t bother me in the least. When I am done working, I just drop the clothes in the washer, and get straight in the shower.
My mother and two of my sisters stay crisp and clean. Mother can wear white and work all day and look like she’s dressed for a garden party. My other sister is like me. She looks like she works on a garbage truck. What in the world do people do who stay clean? Is it magic?