Last week, the students in the high school theater department had an unofficial “spirit week” to celebrate the upcoming performance—their last production of the year. Wednesday was ‘mismatch patterns’ day.
Tuesday night, there was a flurry of activity in my house. J was texting her friends, discussing what they would wear, sharing hideous combinations via FaceTime. I threw some even more hideous ideas her way, but when she rejected them, I left her to her own devices.
Finally, she came downstairs in her proposed outfit, but she had already decided it was too much. “Abort mission! Abort mission!” she commented as she modeled her dreadful get up.
She had two different socks—one striped, one with skeleton leg bones. Her pants were short and patterned with an elephant print, and she had layered a plaid flannel over a striped tank. The outfit was completed with what she would later refer to as a “gross green floral scarf.” She was a sight to behold.
“I… don’t know if I want to do this,” she expressed her thoughts aloud.
“You’re not the only one participating,” I told her. “I saw the combination your friend was putting together.”
“I don’t know…” she said as she disappeared back up to her room. She came down a while later to work on her homework. She was quiet for a few minutes as she worked. Then, out of the blue she looked at me, excited. “Your cow shirt, Mom! Do you still have your cow shirt?” The shirt was one I had picked up in cowboy country years ago and had actually worn at one point in my life. Since then, J had used it once before as part of a costume for a school event.
“I’m not sure. If I did, it would be hanging on the closet door,” I told her. She ran upstairs. “Is it there?”
“Got it!” she announced, retreating to her room.
I’m not sure what it was about my cow shirt that made the crazy outfit more tolerable than a plaid flannel. It certainly made it crazier. And I can pretty much guarantee that no one else had a cow shirt to (mis)match their outfit!
[image is a photo of my crazy cow shirt that definitely does not match much else in this life]