When I was a kid, I used to say that I wanted to grow into a doddering old woman who walked around with her hair dishevelled, wearing rubber boots and her dead husband’s cardigans. Well, I just realised that I may be reaching my goal faster than I thought. Perhaps for psychological reasons best left uninvestigated, my favourite piece of clothing is the old grey cardigan I purchased at the second hand store. You know, the kind that your great grandfather wore on his voyage to the new country, the one made from the wool of a sheep he probably sheared himself. Old man cardigans are the cat’s pyjamas (okay, no, but you can wear them over your cat pyjamas which is even better). You can wear them over anything, and because it is a dull grey it matches everything. As an added bonus, it has two perfectly sized pockets for holding used kleenexes, small chocolates and other sundry useful tidbits. I loves my old man cardigan. In fact, my whole history could be viewed from the perspective of my favourite ugly sweater.
1989-1990:this is when the trend began. Somehow I got a hold of one of my deceased great grandfather’s brown polyester cardigans and wore it over my black turtle necks. Other choice garments from this period included black buster brown’s (that looked like they might be orthotics for an eighty year old).
1990-1995: here was a bit of hiatus. Unfortunately, I was living on the west coast right at the moment of the huge grunge earthquake, which meant that there was an excess of flannel plaids and half shaved heads (do you remember this look? where girls could still have long hair but still be semi hard core by shaving the back of their heads? I am shuddering as the memory of it washes over me).
1995-now: aahhh, the years I have spent with J. There has been a number of old man cardigans (and old woman cardigans) shared between the two of us.
Now, to share your own very favourite old man cardigan, used kleenexes and all-it must be love…
Of course, the love might not last that long if he keeps on making comments like the one he made when I came home with some new winter boots. Green suede on the outside, beautiful emerald faux fur on the inside, with a rubber sole to get me through any slush the Montreal winters throw my way, I proudly showed my new purchase to J who promptly told me that they looked like rubber boots. Despite the fact that he could not recognise good Italian craftmanship when he saw it, his comment gave me pause. I harkened back to my youthful desire to become an eccentric old bat. With the wisdom of my years, I concluded that we don’t in fact change much over the years. Or perhaps we cast our dye very early on. Or perhaps we make our bed and then must lie in it. Oh, I don’t know. Maybe I need some more of that wisdom stuff….
Oh and by the way, the boots in fact turned out to be sock eaters.