What Not To Wear…

Pam Pollock
October 2022

I was a little indecisive about what I should title this month’s column as I had several options swirling about in my head: I Shipped My Pants was the strangest one and really didn’t fit the topic, but it gave me fits of giggles as I recalled that hilarious Kmart commercial from a few years ago. Then I came up with Who Wore It Better and it was a really good one, but I realized that my spouse did indeed wear it better, so I tossed that one aside as well.  I finally settled on What Not To Wear, so come along for the ride of a day in the life of Pam and Steve…

Now I need to add a little backstory to my tale – my spouse and I will be celebrating 40 years of marriage in December.  I always tell my loving husband that, “What’s yours in mine and what’s mine is … mine.”  He’s never been amused by my thought process.  We have a daily battle over the TV remote and the shows being broadcast.  At night, it’s a fight to the death over the covers on the bed.  He always comes up a winner on that one.  I buy special “Pam Snacks” and walk out into the kitchen only to discover my chip bag has only 3 tiny pieces left in it.  Don’t even get me started on my Sarris chocolate situation – I’ve taken to hiding my candy, but I hide it so well that I forget where I put it!  He purposely chooses snacks that he knows I will never eat.

When we get in one of our automobiles, there’s a mad dash on my part to adjust the A/C or heat.  If we are in his pick-up truck, I also immediately reach for the radio dial to change it to the Classic Vinyl station.  But woe to the man if we are in MY car and he attempts to adjust the mirrors.  Both of us are also territorial about the pens and pencils at the office.

Back to my tale – as most of you know, I am very big on birding.  I sometimes get up before daylight and head off into the woods.  Many times, the temperature is cool, and I dress in jeans or sweatpants, but it starts getting hot and humid as the day goes on.  My husband is an avid outdoorsman and owns a couple of pairs of pant that you can zip off the legs to make them into shorts.  I realized that I needed me some of these magical, convertible pants and I ordered a couple pairs immediately.

And that’s when I realized that sexism is alive and well in the garment industry.  My husband’s pants have pockets galore – ample, roomy cargo pockets and deep ones on the old caboose.  There’s zippers and snaps and all sorts of wizardry!  And mine?  Two little zippered spaces and a tiny pocket on the rear.  Well, ship my pants – that just isn’t right. I went back online and finally found a pair of women’s pants that had cargo pockets.  And all was right in the world – until 2 weeks ago when the dude is planning on going to Lake Erie to fish and he can’t find his army green fishing pants.  He has to wake up at 3:00 am and he discovers that he can’t find his pants at 10:00 pm – we tear up the house looking for them.  He accuses me of misplacing his pants, I get indignant.  He goes to bed – very grumpily, I might add – and I find his missing pants in the dirty clothes hamper.  I stay up and wash and dry them for him because I am a loving, caring wife.  At 3:00 am I hear his alarm blaring and I groggily tell him that his nice and clean pants are in the bathroom.  Five seconds later, he yells, “These are not my pants – they’re yours!”  I argue that they are not – I stumble into the bathroom and discover that they are indeed my pants.

For over a week, we look for these pants to no avail. I snidely suggest to him that maybe he should take better care of his things.  I continue to go on wonderful birding adventures.  He sulks.  And one night I am doing the laundry and I go to fold one of my pairs of birding pants – and it’s the mystical, marvelous pockets galore pair and I am confused because I am wearing my mystical, marvelous pockets galore pants at that very moment… and then I realize that I took my dear, dear, dear spouse’s convertible pants and I have been wearing them and keeping them with my clothes.  And the night that he couldn’t find HIS pants at 10:00 pm?  Well, that’s because I was wearing them.

I tell him that I have found his pants.  IT’S A MIRACLE!  He presses for more details – when did I find them?  Just now, I reply.  Where were they? I hedge with my answer and then a lightbulb goes off in his head and he accusingly proclaims, “You’ve had them this entire time and have been wearing them!”  He  then asks the burning question, “How did you not notice how long they are on you?  I am 10 inches taller than you!”

He snatches his beloved pants out of my arms, and scurries away with his treasure.  I swear I heard him whispering, “My precious” as he ran down the hallway.  He’s been guarding those pants like Fort Knox ever since, only allowing me to don them for the photo above and then making me give them right back to him.

It's okay, dear – no, really, I totally know what not to wear from now on.  But I do have the last laugh, I ran out of my deodorant 3 days ago and I’ve been wearing his Ocean Surf Speed Stick.  Hey, what’s his is mine, right?!