June 10, 2004
Falling Down On The Job



My pants are falling down again. 

Every time I stand up or squat down or reach on my tiptoes to grab a file folder from the top shelf of the supply cabinet, I can feel them snaking back down around my hips. Then I've got to sneak into the server closet (or behind the shipping supply cabinet, or squeezed into the space between the water cooler and the snack cupboard) and hike them up again. There are no belt loops on these pants --  just a sort of ineffectual side-zipper/button combination -- so I can't jury-rig them with rubber bands. Safety pins are involuntary acupuncture, waiting to happen. Even triple-rolling the waistband doesn't work: within a couple of minutes they've managed to work their way back down again, the crotch dangling uncomfortably between my lower thighs. All I need is a baseball cap and a pair of pin-striped boxers hanging out of the rear waistband, and I'd be right at home in front of the West Oakland Taco Bell.

It might be funny if it weren't so maddeningly inconvenient.

Nothing fits me right now. I'm at that peculiar *in-between* phase of the weight loss effort, where the Fat Clothes are too fat but the Skinny Clothes are still another eight weeks of fat-free/sugar-free pudding away. Not that I maintain huge stockpiles of Fat Clothes and Skinny Clothes in my closet these days. In our teeny-tiny apartment, we have precisely enough closet space to maintain a *right now* wardrobe --  the clothes that fit us comfortably right now, today, this minute -- and very little else. The only exceptions are my wedding dress, shrouded in plastic; the dress I wore to the Hamilton family reunion in Idado in 1991; a little blue and white polka-dot skirt suit that ran away with me in 1997 (and has hung in the back of my closet ever since); plus a handful of 'professional clothes' I've picked up over the past few years for which I feel some lingering sentimental attachment.

Like these pants.

I bought these pants as part of a three-piece suit -- jacket, pants and skirt -- back when I made the leap from Front Desk to Executive Ass at the Totem Pole Company. They were the first honest-to-goodness *professional clothes* I'd ever bought for myself --  the first brand-new *professional clothes* I'd ever bought, I should say: until then it had been mostly thrift-store finds and hand-me-downs from my mom -- and I've harbored a secret unreasonable pride in them ever since. They weren't especially expensive. I got them off the clearance rack. They're not especially well-made: I've had to repair the ineffectual side-zipper/button combination at least a bazillion times in the past four years, usually while standing in the middle stall of the ladies room. And they're not especially attractive. They've always been a little too baggy in the butt. But these days it's getting ridiculous.  

("Woman," Dawn says, as she walks into the copy room and catches me tugging them up again. "You need to buy some new PANTS.")

Screw 'emotional attachment.'  As soon as I get home tonight, these suckers are going into the Salvation Army bag.

Still, as "problems" go, this is definitely the sort of problem you want to have ... like having more hard drive space than you need, or not knowing which Prom offer to accept.  And I've already started picking up a few new Skinny Clothes, here and there.  Just last weekend, David and I went to the mall and outfitted ourselves for the trip to TicTac.  I didn't buy a lot -- I want to wait for the real wardrobe renovation until after I've hit my goal weight, another eighteen pounds from now -- but what I did buy, I'm happy with.  I got a new pair of jeans that will be perfect for Soft Tacos and Mexi-Fries with the Tots, after we land on Saturday  ... a snappy red pullover that will work for lattes and frosted blueberry scones with my old high school classmate, Carolyn Dopps  ... a nice blouse and matching slacks I'll wear to eat Kung-Pao Chicken and deep-fried egg rolls with my Dad and step-mother on Sunday afternoon.  Best of all, I found a beautiful new suit -- pants and jacket, both in a gorgeous sky-blue that matches David's eyes --  that will not only see me through Kyle's graduation ceremony on Monday, but also through the big celebration dinner afterwards.  Plus I picked up enough T-shirts and tank tops and comfy pants to see me through four days of appetizers, omelets, vending machine cookies, greasy restaurant sandwiches and teeny-tiny bags of airline peanuts.

On second thought  ...  maybe I'd better hang onto those fat pants for a little while longer.


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not to mention the ten-pound box of aplets & cotlets i plan to sneak home
in my suitcase ...