That sounded really critical but that's not the way I meant it. My husband is brilliant, talented, handsome, funny, and I love him more than air. He just doesn't have very good fashion sense. Bless his heart.
This might be partially my fault. Okay, it's probably all my fault. We met at a fitness club 25+ years ago. I thought Jayson had the most beautiful eyes I'd ever seen and he looked pretty darn good in his racquetball shorts. I stalked him for a while but couldn't get him to ask me for a date so I asked him out. When he picked me up I realized that I had never seen him in street clothes before. And I didn't want to see him in them again. Shortly after we started dating regularly I took him shopping and I've been shopping for him ever since. It's not that I'm controlling or demanding or expect him to look a certain way. It's just that I'm trying to save him from himself.
I tried to gently inform Jayson that his taste in clothing might not accurately reflect who he really is. I tried to teach him how to determine what's in style and how to put an outfit together but he never really caught on, probably because he really didn't give a rip. He was perfectly comfortable wearing a wide leather belt with his sweatpants. I am not making that up.
I realize that I might have inadvertently given my husband a complex about his clothes. I am reminded of this when he's getting ready for work and wakes me from a dead sleep at 7 a.m. to ask me if his underwear matches his belt. Or if it's okay to wear black shoes with khaki pants. He just doesn't grasp the concept of neutrals. For 25 years I have been trying to explain to him that I have purposely chosen a Garanimals wardrobe for him and they're ALL the giraffe. All of his pants are neutrals so that all of his shirts will go with them.
Jayson has gone on a few shopping trips by himself but it's usually easier for me to just go with him since I have to walk him through the store via cell phone anyway. Not too long ago he was in Stein Mart having a panic attack about whether a certain shirt he liked was turquoise or teal. I told him it didn't matter since he'd be wearing it with neutral britches but he insisted that the color of the shirt could affect his choice in socks so he should know whether it's in the green family or the blue. Our cell conversation went something like this:
JAYSON: I found a shirt that I like but I'm not sure if it will go with my pants.
ME: Your pants are black, gray and khaki. Trust me. It will go.
JAYSON: If it's blue I can wear it with with black pants but if it's green I can wear it with brown, right?
ME: You can wear both with both.
JAYSON: But what about my socks?
ME: It's a freakin' GIRAFFE! If you like the shirt, get it.
JAYSON: I wish I could take it outside to see the color better.
ME: Look around you. Find a woman. Any woman.
JAYSON: Okay. I see one.
ME: Now go ask her if the shirt is turquoise or teal.
JAYSON: Okay, I'll call you back.
I honestly can't remember if the shirt was turquoise or teal because obviously it didn't matter. But Jayson did get a second opinion from a total stranger which gave him the confidence he needed to make an intelligent wardrobe decision.
Last night we went britches shopping at Kohl's. Jayson made a declaration that he wanted some light khaki pants since all of his were the darker khaki that leans toward brown. For him, light khaki is exciting and out-of-the-box. I know, bless his heart.
We were discussing what color shirts would go with khaki and, once again, he was not grasping the concept of "everything". He kept trying to trip me up by asking me about crazy obscure colors...like orange. Then we saw a guy in the parking lot wearing an orange shirt with light khaki pants. Jayson determined that it looked fine. Then there was another man with light khaki pants and a blue shirt. Jayson said (and I am not making this up), "Wow, I guess it really does go with everything."
I suppressed an aneurism as we walked into the store and headed for the men's department. We picked out a couple of pairs of jeans, several pairs of pants (including the uber chic light khaki) and a couple of shirts that were more colorful than Jayson is used to.
He went into the fitting room to try everything on and instructed me not to wander too far. This is because each item requires my approval before he can move on to the next. This is NOT my rule. I would so totally rather be kicking back at home while he is shopping but because I apparently ruined him early on, this is the price I pay.
I am not a fan of traditional shopping but I do love thrift stores, flea markets and garage sales. Jayson doesn't care for shopping at all but he is usually willing to go with me as long as I don't require him to participate in the shopping. He never EVER nags or complains or tries to rush me and I dearly love him for that. I will go into whatever store I want to, take as long as I want to and Jayson will wait patiently outside. I pretend that he is my bodyguard or my Secret Service agent. If we're at a flea market or a festival where it's crowded and I don't see him when I come out of the store, he whistles for me. I call it our mating call. It's a short little whistle, not loud at all, but I am so in tune with it that when I hear it my head automatically jerks up in the direction of the sound.
Jayson had to use the mating call a couple of times at Kohl's since hanging around the dressing rooms made me feel a little bit like I was hanging around the men's room door. When I told this to Jayson he said that although the fitting rooms were in the men's department they were very much co-ed. He signaled for me to follow him to his dressing room where there were some abandoned garments hanging on a hook: a bra, a couple of pairs of panties and a very frilly black lace teddy. I asked him if the teddy fit and he said it was too tight in the bust.
After inspecting each item that Jayson tried on and reassuring him that everything matched everything else, we went home with several new outfits for him. Since today is casual Friday, he wanted to wear one of his new pairs of jeans to work:
JAYSON: Which one of the jeans made my butt look really good?
ME: They both did.
JAYSON: Yeah but one of them made it look really REALLY good. (He said this with his hands held up as if he was grasping a basketball.)
If I could go back and do it all over again, I would learn to love sweatpants with a leather belt.