A couple of weeks ago I went to Secret Cinema in London. It was a pretty incredible experience and we all came away safe in the knowledge that it was £50 well spent as we got to sit in an igloo made out of books and attend a lecture on seasonal novelty vaginas.
We were each given a different fancy dress theme – mine being some sort of high society aristocratic penthouse cocktail party attire. I go to parties, but they’re usually in draughty flats and grubby share houses rather than penthouses. I am also not, alarmingly, a member of the genteel aristocracy. High society ladies do not tend to hail from a three bedroom semi in Essex.
I think I pulled off an admirable interpretation of what a high society aristocratic person might look like, focusing on sparkly things and dead animals.
Secret Cinema was on a Friday, and rather than stumbling around trying to get changed in a toilet cubicle; bare foot accidentally landing on a suspicious wet patch on the floor, I went to work dressed in my cocktail party finery. The reaction at the office was quite astonishing. There were compliments, shocked faces, hushed whispers and the IT guy fell over a bin. For about 30 seconds I was convinced that I had done an amazing job and looked awesome, but then realised after the 18th person told me that I looked “Soooo different!!” that it was actually because I usually come to work looking like complete shit. I think the fact that I had actually brushed my hair had blown everyone away.
It got me thinking that maybe I should make more of an effort for work. I know the day will come when I’ll be on the tube in my worn jeans that are baggy around the bum, muddy Converse and T shirt with a coffee stain down the front; hair straggly and un-brushed; make up smudged after a 12 hour day of commuting and hunter gathering…and will run into either; a) an ex boyfriend that I haven’t seen in years, b) an old school friend that I haven’t seen in years, or c) Sean Bean. Who I have never seen but am hopelessly in love with.
The train home out to Essex is packed full of immaculate looking girls in outfits that do not consist of Converse with grass clods in the laces; who have obviously tended to their general upkeep throughout the day. They do not have panda eyes, a reflective forehead, an ink mustache or Dr Emmet Brown hair. I’m starting to feel like the bird feeding woman from Home Alone 2 in their presence.
The thing is, I really like jeans. I also am a big advocate of Converse, grass clod or no. And to top it all off, I love T shirts. Whilst people around me at work lurk on Facebook or gaze at secretescapes.com, I trawl happily through Threadless.com. I could look at T shirts all day.
Anyone can submit a T shirt design to Threadless, and they’re voted for by the customers and you end up with an awesome T shirt depicting Abraham Lincoln punching a T Rex.
I would much rather wear my Middle Earth tube map T shirt than a smart dress. I fear the day that the print starts to flake from my Zombies in Wonderland T shirt, the colour slowly fading from Alice’s cheeks as she swings her samurai sword towards a peeling zombified Cheshire Cat. I feel very smug slipping into my “I Am Alt of Ctrl” T shirt knowing that some commuters somewhere in that vast green commuter belt are currently shoehorning themselves into a suit.
It makes for a more interesting coffee break too (which for me stretches from 8.45am to ohhhh….hmmm….lets say about…lunch), than sifting through the inane drivel on my Facebook news feed. My spontaneous culls are reaching a critical stage. Looking at the same photo of the same person in the same dress in a mildly altered selfie position is not fun. Looking at a Threadless T shirt entitled The Communist Party is fun. Look, Stalin has a beer! Karl Marx has a lampshade on his head!! They’re Communists at a party!!!!!
This week in London is going to involve this thing which we have all forgotten about and need to reacquaint ourselves with…The Sun. There will be a transition period. Once we have all reassured ourselves that this burning ball of flame in the sky is not the coming of the apocalypse, and I have recovered from my chronic sunburn and Vitamin D overdose, we can move on to more pressing matters.
Flip flops. Bare skin. Ray Bans. My Ray Bans have been prepped and ready to go in my handbag since March. Every so often I feel optimistic and bring them out, but then I can’t see where I’m going and end up posting letters into a rubbish bin.
My flip flops have been sitting eagerly by my desk, waggling excitedly at the prospect of a day out. Today I jolted down the street like an out of practice Tony Manero, before eventually easing back into the rhythm of fast paced London flip-flop walking.
I might even have to cut the sleeves off some of my favourite T shirts.