Forever in Blue Jeans

Here’s a Good Morning America Advice Guru update for those of you who are poised and ready to switch morning show allegiances should I make the cut. (Did you get that, Mr. ABC Executive?  That’s right.  If you pick me, hoards of my friends and family members are prepared to defect from that “other” morning show; you know the one that keeps beating you in the ratings war.  I’m just saying.)  I’m getting sidetracked. Where was I?  Update, that’s right.  I suppose I should just go ahead and apologize for my ruminations to those of you who are sick of hearing about this Advice Guru business, and especially to those of you who could have cared less from the start, but guess what.  I’m not.   This is important to me and you’re going to have to be just a teensy, weensy bit patient, you know patience is a virtue and all that.  Or, you can go ahead and skip ahead to the third paragraph.  Fine.  Be that way.  Whatever (eye roll… you forget, I’m the mother of teenagers).

So here’s the update: still no news. I’m beginning to waiver on the old no news is good news attitude.  “Be steadfast,” I keep telling myself.  No news is good news.  No news is good news.  Monday is November 8, which marks the “couple of weeks” that Robin and George anticipated it would take to sift through the 15,000 applications.  November 8 is only four days away, and that’s if they work over the weekend.  Surely I should have heard by now.  Maybe no news is really bad news.  Oh boy.  Emotional roller coaster, here we go again, “Warning! For safety, you should be in good health and free from high blood pressure, heart, back or neck problems, motion sickness, or other conditions that could be aggravated by this adventure. Expectant mothers should not ride.” * Or maybe just maybe, they’re saving the best for last, right?  Maybe I’ll get an email or a phone call at 11:59 pm on Monday night!   It could happen.  So with that in mind, while it is almost too tempting to pass up an opportunity to a discuss the recent election results, I will continue to stick with benign topics.  Today I will talk to you about shopping for blue jeans.

I’m sure Mr. Levi Strauss never dreamed that the sturdy trousers he began peddling to California miners in the late 1870’s would become an American wardrobe staple.  I am a red-blooded American woman and therefore a well-fitting, comfortable pair of jeans is vital to my happiness.  Shopping for blue jeans is exhausting.  For one thing I have some shopping idiosyncrasies, which tend to manifest themselves most profoundly when I am on the prowl for a new pair of blue jeans.  Couple this with the sweeping number of choices that must be made in pursuit of the perfect pair of jeans and I get plum tuckered out just thinking about it.

These days there are styles and cuts to fit every conceivable body type.  You can’t fit a round peg into a square hole, so I’ve given up trying to squeeze my callipygian figure, ample thighs and all, into any pair of jeans bearing a tag with the words skinny, slim, or tapered fit.  Even when I am at my absolute skinniest, the proportions of my body are much better suited for jeans that qualify as the relaxed, loose, or made for women with big legs variety.

The concept of “rise” refers to the distance between your crotch and the waistband of your jeans, and was first introduced to me about six or seven years ago by my much younger next-door neighbor.  She suggested we make a date to go shopping.  Little did I know her hidden agenda was to get me out of my favorite high-waisted frumpy mom jeans and into a pair of hip, low rise boot cut jeans.  It was on this shopping trip that I discovered that blue jeans were allowed to rest below the natural waist, and in fact looked much better when they did.  Since then, I have tried a variety of “rises” ranging from traditional (i.e. frumpy mom rise) to medium rise, low rise, and extremely-low-Brazilian-bikini-wax-required-rise.  SPECIAL NOTE:  No woman over the age of 35 should attempt to wear extremely low rise.  It’s just not pretty, and by the way I have established that medium rise works best for me, just in case you were wondering.

Indigo, faded, stonewashed, and acid-washed are just a few of the finishes available on blue jeans these days.  I’m fine with this pre-washed business, but what I can’t fathom is spending good money on ripped jeans.  What’s up with that?  When I rip my jeans, it’s usually inadvertently and I either patch them or give them to Goodwill.  Who exactly is responsible for ripping up perfectly good pairs of jeans prior to sale?  What sort of qualifications does one need to get that job?  Call me old fashioned, but I like the feel of crisp newness when I buy a new pair of jeans. I’m sure Mr. Levi Strauss never dreamed that the sturdy trousers he began peddling to California miners in the late 1870’s would become an American wardrobe staple, and in order to boost sales, designers would be ripping them to shreds prior to delivering them to retail establishments.  I’m am fairly certain that an important feature of the product old Levi patented was their durability and ability to withstand daily wear and tear without ripping.  Huh.  Anyway, in 1885, a brand new pair of indigo blue jeans sold for about $1.50.  Today an equivalent pair of jeans runs between $30 and $50, and the more fashionably faded and ripped styles will set you back $75 or even $100.  Call me old fashioned, but I don’t think I’ll ever be able to bring myself to buy a pair of pre-ripped jeans.  What do you think Mr. Levi Strauss would think about that?

Till tomorrow…Good night.  Sleep tight.

*Actual warning from a sign posted at a rollercoaster circa. 1800.



6 thoughts on “Forever in Blue Jeans

  1. Kathleen,

    I edited the piece a bit since last night…perhaps if we don’t hear from ABC we could go into business shredding jeans for American Eagle Outfitters. It seems there’s a market for it. 🙂
    You hang in there too.

  2. Jeans for different sizes and shapes are great. Have you ever seen large women pour themselves into jeans that are too tight and look like they have been painted on? The funny thing is, they think they look great and the tightness makes them look thinner. Not so, ladies…..take a look in the mirror. The lumps and bumps do not disappear.

  3. Dear former neighbor and friend,

    Thanks for the shout out in your blog – I laughed and do remember this shopping trip and others! Aren’t you thrilled I re-introduced you to the hip, young you that you already were/still are??? Wish we were still neighbors and shopping buddies…


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