The Shirt Off My Back

This week (and last) I bought shirts. Yay shirts! And ties. At Target I bought a teal linen shirt that matches my hair quite nicely, and a very nice cotton dress shirt that appears lavender, but when you get up close you can tell it’s a very fine purple and white check. The week before I went to Macy’s with my former girlfriend and now friend Momo, and shopped their “Store for Men”  where we found a nice silver and white striped dress shirt and two ties, one purple and silver striped and one teal and turquoise paisley on black.

I like shopping at Target because no one pays you any mind whatsoever while you shop. I can stand there in the men’s department and try on shirts and hold up jeans and contemplate sweaters in perfect anonymity. The only ones who ever give me any odd looks are the Hispanic men also shopping there, and I don’t know if its cultural or I’m just imagining it, but they generally glance my way and then quickly away. I think I don’t fit real well into their world view, with my blue hair and my size and androgyny, so they’d rather think of me as invisible. Also there’s the novelty of being a gringo shopping in a store with predominantly Latino customers. I get the same “What the hell is Whitey doing here?” looks when I shop at the Mercado on the corner for groceries. But I’m sort of used to that, I live in a neighborhood where my inability to speak Spanish puts me in a distinct minority.

Macy’s was a little weirder. It was also all but deserted, but I had this conspicuous feeling there that was the opposite of the anonymity I feel in Target. When it came time to try on the shirts, I decided that it would be easier to take them to the large-size women’s department on the same floor than to brave the suspicious glare of the men’s department clerks. I seriously was half-expecting to get thrown out by the guy manning the tie department, who kept casting venomous glances our way as Momo and I checked out the ties in the sale bin. Of course I didn’t exactly fit in in the women’s department either. I got some looks from the clerk there, too, but since I was shopping with Momo, who is decidedly more femme than me, they didn’t challenge us.

The reason for all these new clothes is I have a wedding to attend at the end of May. A pair of women I’m very fond of are tying the knot, and they’ve asked me to sing at their wedding. Obviously I want to look my best for them. Alas, I think I might need to go shop at the big and tall men’s shop. I’m right at the edge, and I have a thick-as-hell neck, and even my new shirts are uncomfortable when I button the top button. I also think it’s time to buy a proper binder and quit playing pretend with the sports bras. I’ve found some candidates in sizes for big folks like me at Underworks. Anyone with experience in this arena is welcome to render opinion.

Silver Stripes and Teal Paisley

Grape and Silver on Violet
(I already owned the dark purple Tencel shirt here, but it goes nicely with the new tie.)

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~ by Nezu on 26 April 2010.

6 Responses to “The Shirt Off My Back”

  1. most awesome! do I know these ladies getting married 😉 I still want to go shopping with you … we can hit casual male in mountain view/Los altos … they are very cool in there & have a FABULOUS clearance rack. agree that target rocks!

    • As it happens, you do. *laughs* And yes! I want to go shopping with you, too. We still need to get your wedding clothes, don’t we? Also shoes!

      • wedding clothes are purchased & were at the tailors when you came over which is why I didn’t show you… & in the interest of saving $$ I think I’m going with a pair of shoes I already own … meant to show you those & forgot … so, soon… maybe as soon as next week… what does your week look like? … so, I’m new to this blog thing, you’ll have to teach me how to change the image attached to me… it looks kinda girlie 🙂

  2. I told you this in chat, but I’ll repeat it so you have it somewhere you can look at it-

    When you are in a store, with the intent of spending money (particularly a mostly abandoned store, where the only flak you can get is from employees)

    And they go a step beyond the hairy eyeball.

    Fuckem fuckem fuckem fuckem fuckem fuckem! Grab six expensive shirts (actually, do that at the start and just carry them around) and when you get shit demand to see a manager.

    Try to look like you were going to spend about 200$ in a store like Macy’s.

    And get the pricks name, and then if you really want to ruin his life write a letter when you get home. They do have these things called a complaints department. It’s not a store run by some religious group (well okay it was technically a temple of the almighty dollar) and we weren’t being NEARLY gay enough to offend other customers.

    What’s really kinda ironic about this to me is that you’re the one that thinks we should go test drive the Tesla that was REALLY have no intention of buying

    On a side note- I really wished they’d had that awesome plaid in my size. I may go hunt for that today.

    • OK the deal with the Tesla is we tell them UP FRONT as soon as we walk in the door that we’re writers, putting a Tesla in a book, and want to get a brochure and look at them in person to make sure we had the details right. No wasting of their time or pretending like we have that kind of cash! (And then if they’re cool and offer us a ride, awesome.)

      And yeah, you’re right. I’m usually more self-confident than I was that night, but for some reason I was feeling weird and uncomfortable in that mostly empty Macy’s. I was glad you were with me.

  3. Cool. I like both shirts – the striped one with the tie is very nice. And do as she says when you go into dept stores. Grab something(s) that equal up to $$ and then shop. If nothing else it will make you feel a bit more confident.

    I even get weird looks. Maybe its the pink curl, maybe its the lack of bra. Maybe its the paint on the shoes. Just ignore the idiots. If they want your money, they have to behave.

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