It seems I have regressed. I am not an indecisive individual in almost every aspect of my being. But at some point in the last few years, I appear to have lost the ability to be able to go clothes shopping for myself.
Unless my wife comes with me and tells me what I can and can’t have, what I should and shouldn’t wear, I am likely to commit any manner of fashion faux pas all in the name of clothing myself. It’s a treacherous path I’ve waltzed down more than once and mostly to my peril.
From age 12 to about age 38, I took control of buying my own clothes. Like most men, I shopped on Boxing Day for the year. For the remaining 12 months there would need to be occasional socks and jocks missions but I had them down pat and could be in and out of the shop with 7 pairs of boxers and 7 pairs of socks in around 7 minutes. I didn’t have much clue but if it fit, was discounted and didn’t need ironing, I was generally on board.
Before the age of 12, the significant woman in my life, my Mum made various clothing decisions. I lost faith in her ability when the pair of runners I’d picked out turned out to be women’s shoes and it seemed she was quite content to condone my early forays into cross dressing.
There came a point which was part surrender and part acknowledgement that there were people better equipped to make fashion decisions than I was, and, they were living in my house.
To be honest life has never been better. I now have clothes that are slimming, I have others that match my eyes and I have shorts which are ok to wear at night, not with thongs apparently, but I call that progress just the same.
Anything in Trojan green may be worn on rugby days only and tracksuit pants are not to leave the house or allowed to be pulled up too high. T-shirts with holes or gravy stains are periodically thrown out and God help me if my trousers are either too short, too long or too baggy.
Shopping for clothes still only happens maybe once or twice a year. I take up position in a change room and receive items which satisfy selection criteria over the closed door. I try them on and anything I like I can keep. Anything I don’t like which was popular in the eyes of the selectors, needs to be modelled. Its virtues both espoused and discredited. I call these my St Vincent’s items, because that’s who usually ends up with them after 12 months in the wardrobe.