Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Pretty Sure I'm The Only One I know That Can Fail Panties....Sigh

“Wine Country Casual? What the hell is that?!” My slightly panicked mutterings when I finally received my FedEx package from the Wine Writer’s Symposium detailing all the doings that will be going on while I’m there. “Well whatever it is I’m sure I don’t have it” I told my husband and began planting the seed, in my own head, about having to get some shopping done. I think I had seen on the website that there were a couple nights when we would be required to swank it up a little but, well I’d inconveniently forgotten that smidgen of a detail thinking there was weeks and weeks to find something, maybe have it tailored even. Yeah, utter horseshit. I loathe shopping, especially for anything fancy, so I was delaying it…you know, the way you do with the dentist. It’s that dreadful for me and even though I knew I was running out of time I simply choose not to think about it. That ignore it and it might go away kind of thinking that always, always ends up being a very fine, and wicked smart idea. Fuck me.

Got my packet on Thursday night didn’t even really look at it until Saturday evening and that was when it hit me, I had basically screwed myself out of any meaningful shopping, (if there is such a thing) and due to prior commitments had only one day to try and dress myself for a couple fancy dinners and meeting one of my favorite wine writers, face to face, for the first time. Perfect. Today was that day. Today, fucking Valentine’s Day. I had to go, (insert doom-doom-doom music here) to the goddamn mall on fucking Valentine’s Day. Brilliant. 

Put it off as long as I could this afternoon. I had been foolishly waiting for an email that never really came, but made myself feel better with whispered assurances that the chicks getting their hair did, partaking of free makeovers and spraying themselves, heavily, with the counter samples of perfume would be long gone, and hoping that the, “Holy shit I need a gift” dudes were probably filtering out and making their stress sweaty drive home. Checked my empty email box one last time, poured myself a glass of courage and pouted before slipping my gray hoodie over my head, begrudgingly shoving my feet into my Vans and heading for the door. “Two things; one you don’t need ANY new pajamas and two, you’ve been complaining about needing new underwear for months now, get yourself a few pair while you’re there.”  The husband’s parting words, (the pajama bit like a dagger in my heart) before I flipped the latch on the screen and shuffled to my car.

Ladies, feel free to yank my card or whatever but this one thing kept looping in my head all the way to the mall, “Girl clothes. I have to continue dressing like Ellen Degeneres and wonder why chicks keep hitting on me, or I have to buy girl clothes.” One scan of the offerings that greeted me from store to store and I was feeling more comfortable with the whole lesbian thing. Gawd I hate the clothes they make for women. It’s not even about comfort, well okay maybe it is but what up with the ruffles, big splashy patterns, fucking sequins and either itsy bitsy or big loopy sleeves?! That shit right there aint practical and having that much crap hanging off of me will do nothing but make me way too aware of my clothes. Who needs that noise? I flipped through the racks of frilly shirts made out of material I’m sure was designed to cling to my every…nook and cranny, and when I happened upon a shelf full of folded, crisp, white button down shirts my excitement was smacked down when I unfolded one to find a big ass dangly buckle hanging from the waist. 

A sweet woman who apparently sensed my anxiety, that or saw the, “This fucking blows!” face I was sporting offered to help. Fantastic plan that, having someone that doesn’t know anything about you pick out clothes for you. I stood in the dressing room, comfy jeans and sweatshirt in a pile on the floor, in my undies and socks as this woman brought me shirts she thought would, “Play nicely off the pattern in that jacket you picked out” yay, whimper. I needed only try on the first of the five brightly colored, low-cut and puckered with ruffles “blouses” (why can’t they just be shirts? I just don’t get this) she brought me, my breasts looking like they were a bowl holding a pile of oddly colored kale, the material lying flat against my hips and waist, my face aghast and deeply wrinkled looking at myself, this poor woman cooing about how I cute I looked…me trying my best not to call her a name. “Look at how nicely it shows off your shape” she grinned. “Yup, and the second I sit down lots more shapes are gonna show. No way. Not for me” I said through a pained smile, “I’ll just take the jacket and I need some underwear” I told her while wiggling back into my jeans and hoodie. Underwear I know. Underwear I can do. I buy one kind in varying shades and colors, easy. 

Um…what the hell?! I got to the crunders table, it was in the same place I left it, like a year ago, and there where all the bikini briefs used to be where piles and piles of undies but in shapes unlike those I’d known before. Oh sure they always had the butt floss and lacy shit, I just never went there and those were in fact still hung on little hangers in another area but MY crunders were now missing and in their place were things like, Hipsters, String Bikini (oh and I say this as a fat girl, they should not make those for fat girls. Ever seen pork roast wrapped in twine? Just sayin’) Full Briefs, (aka Granny Panties) and Seamless Boy Cut. I was frozen. What to do? I’d ventured off my panty path before and ended up with lace crawling up my butt cheeks and although designed to do so, most uncomfortable I assure you. I walked round and round the table looking like a puppy that is trying to settle on a place to lie down before just grabbing fistfuls, and no, I’m not exaggerating, of stoopid crunders and marching for the register. Failing at panties is pretty bad no? Ugh. Tossed over my credit card, took my sack of undies and shitty attitude to the final stop…the makeup counter. Grrrr

Now remember when I had told myself that all the gift seekers were probably gone already? Yeah, wrong once again. They were there, hundreds of them, standing helpless and pale in the makeup department of the Macy’s. Fuck!! I pulled the little slip from my pocket, the one that has the kind, shade and item number of the makeup and powder I wear. The ones, much like my undies, that I’ve been wearing for like ever but can’t be bothered to remember the name of, and stood there like a fucking day trader trying to flag someone down. “Buy! I wanna buy!” Another very sweet woman came to my rescue. She took the slip from my hand, gave my sour face and sweatshirt clad frame a once over, (I don’t see this as bitchy, just what makeup counter girls do) slipped me a, “Awe, poor you” grin and bounced off for my goods. I stood there watching these poor men trying to navigate the makeup counters, getting sprayed with this fragrance and that, thinking, “Well they ought not be spraying these poor bastards with perfume on Valentine’s Day” when my helpful assistant returned. “Congratulations! You’ve spent enough to get a free gift” she chirped. Oh goddamn it….

“So if you ring up everything together you get both of these gifts along with a free set of brushes” she told me through her big, ultra-white grin. “Okay, so what would be the benefit of ringing them up separately?” not trying to be an ass, just trying to figure this out. “Nothing” she replied. “So I’m sorry, why would you ask me that?” nerves were rubbed to their final layer of dealing, just wanted my face crud and wanted to go home already. She gave me a quick shrug and began ringing my purchase, together. 

“Now which travel makeup case would you like? The black with pink bow or pink with black bow?”

“Let’s go with the black bag”

“Would you like the black eyeliner or mascara?"

“Eyeliner I guess….”

“Which pink lip shimmer?”

“The pink one?”

“I’m sorry? Which shade of pink?”

“Which one will play nicely with this jacket?” pulling the sleeve from my bag.

“I think with your skin tone you should go with this one”


“Now, which moisturizer? Age defying or the one that adds elasticity?”

“Really? Can I go soon? You’re the one giving me the gift, you pick it”

Got home, kicked off my shoes and walked into my bedroom with bags in hand. “How’d it go?” my husband trying to be chipper knowing that I loathe the whole shopping experience. I lifted both bags over my head and let the weird sample bottles, pink tubes and black travel bag, the nearly twenty pairs of crunders spill onto the bed.

 “Cute jacket, did you get a shirt to go with it? And what’s up with these undies, they have lace on them?”

I am now on my fourth glass of Camille Saves Carte d’Or. Letting the rich fruit, powerful nuttiness, the sexy as fuck stain of a remarkable wine wash this craptastic day off of me. 

The knowing that there is a bottle of 2006 Jose Dhondt Blanc de Blanc awaiting my touch…might just pull this Valentine’s Day out yet. 
Not going to worry about creeping crunders until tomorrow….


Alfonso Cevola said...

"Why are you trying so hard to fit in when you were born to stand out?"

- From the movie "What a girl wants"

Winey the Elder said...

I can walk into any of the half dozen wine shops in this verdant metropolis and fill a large U-Haul with bottles that I'd like "try on", and be home by supper.

Clothes shopping? Fuck I hate clothes shopping. It can take me a month to buy a pair of pants. Who makes this crap and for whom? I once thought that I might be better off shopping at Ross' or Marshalls, where the tags often indicate that the garment is "irregular" (I've long considered that I must be irregular since the "regular" looks like shit on me in the mirror) but last year's out of styles usually don't cut it either.

I envy those who can walk into a store and breeze out with an "outfit"; not in my genetic make up, I'm afraid. So, for solace, I often just come home, arms laden with fascinating bottles of "relaxed fit" wines that are just my cut and swath.

My Y chromosomes can so feel your pain, and I must say you look adorable in that champagne...just your style and shade girl and it hugs you in all the right places.

Mon coeur,

Samantha Dugan said...

Okay, I think I love you. I can think of two times when a somewhat simple comment actually made things so clear to me that it was able to make a dramatic impact on how I see myself. One was sitting in a swanky restaurant, feeling horribly under dressed and my boss calmly looked at me, put his hand on the table and said, "Sam, we're spending the same money"....the other was your comment, from a movie or not, just now. Thank you dear friend and I cannot wait to see you Monday!

Oh man, nice to know I'm not alone. When I got home and told my husband about my adventure, in a much more animated way than I was able to convey here I'm sure, he smiled, shook his head and said, "You do know this is part of why I love you right?"....guess irregular sometimes fits just right. Spending the rest of the evening walking around in my Champagne suit suited me perfectly and made an otherwise shitty day...grand.

Thanks to both of you. I was sure this would be a "Girls Only" comment section, that is if my f-bombs didn't chase them all away too, so it made me smile and wish to dispense hugs when I saw you two adorable gentlemen here. Sheesh, does anyone have better, or more supportive readers? Can't imagine they could.

John M. Kelly said...

Man I'm glad I don't have to go through that shit. I have no "style." I buy clothing in fits and starts - every 3 or 4 years. I'm wearing stuff today I've had for 20 years (blazers for longer). I'm built like a coat hanger - I can buy stuff online and it just fits. Drives my girlfriend crazy - she faces the same anxieties you do, and after she buys something - especially pants - she has to alter to fit.

But if anyone is judging me by what I'm wearing I'm not aware of it. Thank god I've got more going on - if all I had to offer society was being a fashion plate I'd probably shoot myself.

IMHO you have it going on too, the same. Every time I have seen you I can say without reservation that your outfit was the farthest thing from my notice. I'm with Alfonso on this one.

BTW - go with the seamless boy cut.

chris said...

As usual, Alfonso is right.

Shopping? It's no fun. Makeup counter lady look, no replacement drawers, no perfect white shirt...been there many a time.

Don't worry about how you'll look at the symposium, you'll be wearing the support from all of us.

Carolyn Blakeslee said...

I can so relate to this. I've braved "real store" shopping maybe once in the last 10 years. Give me eBay, Goodwill, consignment shops and I'm okay (except for underwear, of course, which I buy online). Have a blast at the conference!

Romes said...

awww poor Sam... I'm sitting here trying not to laugh (not at you) but at the picture in my mind of you wadding a big handful of boy short panties and virtually throwing them at the sales lady - did you even check sizes? You crack me up girlfriend!

Everyone else is correct - your personality and sexiness from within is what shines - but I too understand wanting the armour on the outside to protect from those that may be too stupid to see the inside. Luckily, on this trip, you are to be surrounded by people who already know you, get you and love you, so relax and enjoy the moments as they come.

Oh - and next time, when a cool colorado friend says she could so take you out shopping and whip up a few things in no time... well maybe you should say yes? And god forbid - NO RUFFLES - they are for girls who are trying to hide that they don't have boobs - you my dear don't need ruffles!

Is this a long enough comment for a book deal? ;-)

Love you!

Samantha Dugan said...

John My Sweet Friend,
Fuck that was so sweet of you to say. Trust me, I've got nothing in the "going on" department, which is why I normally don't get too hung up about this stuff. Like you I wear clothes I've had for years, (even at my wedding reception....talk about your mother in-law thinking you're a freak. If I heard one more, "A normal women would have" one more time) and in casual situations I do okay. I think it was the fancy part that threw me as girl dressy is so not what I do or how I feel at all comfortable. Whatever, if they toss me for my clothes then I didn't belong there in the first place. Oh and I went with "Hipsters" this morning only to discover another fail, who knew you should check the back of undies for writing before you buy them?! Who fucking thought there would be writing on the ass part of underwear?! Well not me which is why I am sporting pink and black crunders with hearts and XX's and OO's. Fuck.

Now that I might be able to wear well. Thank you lovely lady.

My shape and, um...style does not make second hand too doable, least not in the past but maybe it's time to give it another look. Thanks for the tip!

Oh go ahead, laugh, Call-o sure as shit did and as we've come to discover, you and Call-o have lots in common. In our short time together you have pretty much nailed me, I did in fact throw wads of undies at the poor sales lady. I did smile though. And I did check the sizes, well on most of them. Next time girlie, I will say yes to your generous offer....but no goddamn scarves! Thanks for the comment love, I know you don't love to make them so it means a lot.

Ron Washam, HMW said...

My Gorgeous Samantha,

The title of your post set off my Google Alert for "Panties." I was so glad it was you and not Rush Limbaugh like it usually is.

Every time we've been together I thought you looked fabulous, very Samantha, very stylish. And why you're worried about how you look when you're going to Napa to meet a bunch of wine writer guys who have Asperger's for Fashion is beyond me.

I'm the worst dressed human I know, and also don't care. When I was in high school my trademark was green deck shoes--never wore anything else. And I wondered why I never had a date--green deck shoes normally get girls hot. And I stopped shopping for clothes when they stopped making GarAnimals.

Can't wait to see you Monday. Hoping for those X's and O's.

I love you.

webb said...

I was prepared to tell the guys to just skip my comment, but am somehow "happy" to see that they can relate. As "a woman of a certain age" who carries a bit of extra junk in the trunk, I totally relate to your hatred of shopping and wish I could have been in California to go with you. It's worse than a root canal!

Black pants, white shirts and tees, a scarf or two in bright colors, a couple of "statement necklaces" and the most comfortable high heeled pumps you can stand ... that - plus the new jacket - is all you need. Maybe a shiny barrette or comb and ta da, you can go anywhere and everything "matches" - whatever that is.

Good luck. You will be gorgeous! (and all of the above is available at Target if you just totally feel the need to fill in something else.) Now, go make some new friends who don't care a whit about the packaging.

Brenda said...

I am not a fan of shopping myself. I dread it so much. Hugs to you .

Samantha Dugan said...

Ron My Love,
Funny you should mention Limbaugh, exactly who I looked like cramming my hefty bits into these "Hipster" crunders this morning.....so sad. I think I worry about trying to look at least somewhat appealing because you fiercely smart and wildly talented guys have been drawn to me for some reason, just can't bear the idea of getting that, "Ohhhh, that's what you look like" face. Stupid I know but part of my gender's plight. I often joke that I fail at girl but in the insecurity department, A++. That being said, when I step out of that airport Monday morning, just knowing that I will see your handsome and loving face will make me feel like the most beautiful woman on the planet....or in Santa Rosa anyway. Cannot wait.

Whoa there sister, too much color and hair jewelery? Can't do it. Looks great on others and so very sad on me. Dressing up for me most often involves a shirt and tie and as much as I might have wanted to change that for this trip, looks like that's what is going to happen. I simply need to be comfortable if I'm to shine at all but I do thank you for the tips and I'm with you, Target rules!

I knew there had to be others....

Marcia Macomber said...

Love the way you referred to it as "the Macy's" like everyone refers to "the 405." Icky, yucky!

One of the best things about all the gawdawful ruffly, sequiny, over-done pattern-y fashions right now is it makes shopping faster. Since I hate shopping for clothes, it's fast to look over everything and conclude, "Nothin' fer me!"

Safe travels!

Sara Louise said...

What the hell is Wine Country Casual?? I hate when they make shiz like that up.
And ruffles, big splashy patterns, sequins and either itsy bitsy or big loopy sleeves... good lord... is that what's happening back in my homeland these days? You need to find a Zara stat.

Samantha Dugan said...

Marcia & Sara,
Thank Gawd! I thought for sure I'd lose some female backing on this one. I think the three of us should start a "Ruffle Watch". Each time one of us sees a woman in ruffles, ( I mean someone is wearing that crap right?) we should pop on Facebook and alert each other. Who's in?

Sara Louise said...

Sounds good to me.
Operation Ruffle Watch is a go.

Samantha Dugan said...

Count me in!

Alfonso Cevola said...

That's it, Ron. I'm bringing my green deck shoes now!

Samantha Dugan said...

I had to Google deck shoes.

Anonymous said...


this is simply tremendous. Moving and humorous at the same time.

I have always thought you dressed well. The first time Steph and I went to big houses in Napa (granted, fifteen years ago) we dressed up in our best nor cal hip (before we lived in nor cal); you know, khakis, sweaters, a nice skirt and tights on S (ah, fond memories). And then we found ourselves crammed shoulder to shoulder with tourists from the midwest in jeans, pro-wings, and hooded Buckeye sweatshirts. Meeting wine gurus is one thing. Tasting...wear what you want. The minute you open your mouth and start talking about wine you will either scare the shit out of/impress the hell out of (both) most of those pouring from behind the counter. Of course, if they are snooty or rude (becoming too common I hear) tell them how much their wine blows compared to the French.

Now, having lived in Nor Cal more than a decade, I'd say "wine country casual" is really SF casual (still plenty of tourists dressed for Disneyland though). And Sam, you would fit in in SF in almost everything I have seen you wear. If you have one thing besides writing talent and an open heart, it is style.

And when it comes to the gurus: you know boatloads about wine and are a charming person; you will wow them.

Much love my friend. It has been too long since Steph and I saw you. Maybe next trip down...and if you ever get into foothill wineries, and they are some solid houses now (Cedarville comes to mind) you had better let us know!


Pop Champagne said...

lol! I wear what I like and think I look good in rather than staying on trends... cuz you gotta look comfortable! if you look all awkard doesn't matter how expensive your outfit is you will look awkard!

Samantha Dugan said...

I miss you guys too. You know I always get a little nervous when you read my posts. Worried that I might make that brilliant head of your implode with my grammatical errors and what not, so hearing you say this was tremendous....well that was tremendous! Post mall buzzy rants seem to be something of a thang for me. Can't remember the last time I went and didn't come home to pound my keys. Hate it. Thank you dear friend and all my love to you and Steph.


Selyndria said...

I am so wearing ruffles to the next tasting/event.

I like shopping, but I had gay roommates years ago who helped me develop a personal style. I know what I want when I go in to shop and I'm pretty quick about being in and out of stores.

That said, there's a lot to be said about comfort. When you're comfortable in your clothes, you wear the clothes, not the other way around. You also project much more confidence when you're comfortable in your clothes. Be comfortable and be yourself. You always look put together and Doll, you project and ooze Wine. You wear it well.