I'm about to head to Newbury to the newest Second Time Around consignment shop, which is in a basement near Hereford Street, next to the Boston Architectural College.
I've got two bags of stuff. I was fearless: there are things in there that just a couple of years old. A bright-blue flowered sundress from Boden. A frumpy dirndl skirt from Anthropologie. A clingy black number from Banana Republic that's so sheer it needs a slip. Who wears a slip anymore? What was I thinking when I bought this stuff?
When will I figure out how to choose clothes that look good on me, and that work for me, instead of just buying clothes I like? After all these years of clothes-shopping, I have to say, "Probably never."
Then there's the brown Ann Taylor suit. Unemployed freelancer writers rarely wear suits — at least this one avoids it at all costs. But I sometimes feel insecure and worry that I'll suddenly get an important job interview and I'll need a suit and I won't have one. So I agonize and buy a suit, even though I hate them. Even though I feel like I'm in costume whenever I'm wearing one. I even get a wild urge to commit petty acts of vandalism in my suit, like robbing a parking meter or spray-painting a mailbox. I'm just unsuitable. It's not because I'm too "creative" to wear a suit. I think it's because my mother was a Teamster and my dad is a 1930's socialist and member of the AFL-CIO.
Anyway, I'm about to leave.... nervously. There's nothing like having your clothing rejected by a consignment shop to knock your self-esteem into the gutter. More later.
They took a lot of my things, so I don't feel too embarrassed. But I still had a big bagful to bring home. Including the suit. They said they can't sell them. (Does everyone hate suits as much as I do?) I guess it will go to one of those non-profits that provide business clothing to women breaking into the job market.
They also rejected five iffy tops, a perfectly nice Gap safari jacket, and some old-fashioned sandals. I can't complain. And now I can take the rest of it, and a big bag filled with rattier clothing, to the Salvation Army.
But first, I need to become an expert on John Singleton Copley's European period. That's today's writing assignment. I'm still way too slow at this writing project, but I believe I'm doing a decent job. I certainly nailed Benjamin West yesterday. I think he's as boring as oatmeal, but I somehow managed to make him seem interesting. Back to it.