You know what I miss about having a Real Job? The clothes.
I have a closet full of business attire. I’ve got the suits, the silk blouses, the classic Basics that supposedly never go out of style, all the stuff that would meet Stacy and Clinton’s approval. (And their word is gospel, don’t you know.) And especially the shoes. I’ve got a thing for Anne Klein shoes. Thanks to the wonder that is eBay, I have amassed a ridiculous collection of sandals and peep-toe pumps, f*ck me boots (and some in a less aggressive, more business-like mode) and kitten heels, in virtually any colour you’d care to match with a neutral skirt and jacket and a ‘pop of colour’ tank. I have killer shoes.
I promise you that if you invite me to a job interview, I will look the part.
(Let’s see now. The last interview I attended was in … um, September. Not even in my field, just an administrative position with a small-animal veterinarian, something I thought would help pay a few bills. Needless to say, I didn’t get it.)
So that’s the irony. I have basically two modes of attire, and neither of them, these days, includes any of that Dry Clean Only stuff.
When I’m in the barn, I’m in jeans or those Oh So Flattering breeches, a pair of beaten-up Blunnies with the soles peeling off (or this time of year, a pair of no-longer-watertight Hunter wellies), and various versions of turtleneck and polar fleece, or ratty t-shirt in the summer.
Dead sexy, right?
And when I’m working, I’m at my kitchen table. (There is a spare bedroom which was designated as my office-to-be when I moved in six months ago, but at present it’s still crammed with boxes and there’s no room to set up my desk. Check back in another six months so I can tell you nothing’s changed.) And I’m generally either in the mud- and hair-encrusted barn clothes, or I have made the monumental effort to change into jammies and slippers.
I spend 80% of my life, I figure, wearing slippers.
Now I know that one of the main perks of being a freelance journalist and working from home is supposed to be exactly that, the jammies. I’ve heard my colleagues singing the praises of emancipation from pantyhose. (Okay, I agree on the pantyhose, but then hosiery seems to have generally gone out of style anyway, at least the sheer, runs-if-you-look-at-it-cross-eyed type has.) And there is a helluvalot to be said for being comfortable, and for having your washing machine in the next room so when you spill hot chocolate down your front, you just shrug and fling the fleece in there and grab another one from the bedroom. Alternatively, you just go about your day with crusty hot chocolate on you, because really, who’s seeing you except the cats, who clearly don’t give a tinker’s damn what level of slob you are as long as you keep dishing out the crunchies and the occasional morsel of bacon?
And slippers don’t make my feet hurt, which puts them clearly ahead — in one category, anyway — of my fabulous cream-and-black two-tone D’Orsay peep-toe pumps that go with the black pinstripe suit with the kick pleats. You know, the kind that are crippling but which get you compliments from strangers.
Maybe that’s what I’m missing? Wardrobe egoboo?
On some level, anyway, I miss being presentable.
Not enough to do what some freelancers apparently do, which is rent office space and create office hours for themselves because they find it difficult to work without that sort of structure and pretense. Nope, not rich, and not crazy.
But I do find myself creating reasons to wear stuff from the Better Than Jeans category. I go to the hair salon and the dentist dressed to the nines. So maybe just a smidge crazy.