THE QUEST FOR THE PERFECT JACKET
This sounds silly but it actually isn't. I have embarked on a quest for the perfect spring jacket a few months ago, and have encountered such monsters as the brainwashing to conform to consumerism, the lies of the marketing and the advertisement, the objectifying of women, the dogma of beauty, the discrimination according to body size, boob shape, ass shape, etc., poor craftsmanship, bad design, careless customer service, and finally, no notion that women might actually have a very specific idea about what they want—women are told what to wear, and if they don't like what they can buy, tough shit. There isn't anything else available.
For those of you who don't know, my mother is a fashion designer, and I therefore grew up with particular sensibilities when it comes to clothes and style (this will come out in my book Seamstress). The clothes in Soviet Union were ugly, utilitarian, and often fit badly, therefore women made the clothes themselves. The women in my family made beautiful clothes by sewing, knitting, crocheting, and altering, for as long as I can remember. So when I finally made enough money this year to set aside for a clothes budget, I started carefully planning the list of things I need and the list of things I want. The needs were a must (I was out of panties and the padding in my biking shorts died). The wants were a luxury. I have by now satisfied most of my needs, and as a way of learning to make time for myself and to enjoy something I usually don't let myself enjoy (always work, work, work), I have gleefully decided to buy two things I really really wanted for a long long time: red flats and a nice spring jacket.
Red flats were easy (my first pair I got at 14 when I made money gathering strawberries and blew it on gray sneakers and red patent flats with a bow—and I wanted a new pair since then). I did extensive research online, realized I really want this pair but can't afford it, found the cheaper one (but comparable), walked into a store, tried them on, bought them. They're still sitting in my closet, waiting for me to wear them on a special occasion (I'm so afraid to wear them, it's ridiculous—they seem such a luxury and so precious!).
Now, to the jacket.
The jacket I wanted was a classic trench coat that was either normal length or cropped, you know, so I could wear it with jeans (but not a sporty jacket, rather a nice dressy jacket, on a casual side). Just like with red ballet flats, I had a very clear picture in my mind of what I wanted. I started looking, and boy, was I in for a surprise.
Number one, I couldn't find the color I wanted: a clean off-white or a dark navy. The colors were either screaming "I'm a prepubescent girl! I love pink! And blue! And neon yellow!" or they were muted, "I'm an outdoorsy type woman, and I'm getting old," or they were this brownish tan that made my white skin look gray, or they had garish patterns that one brand copied from another, because what if they're smarter and know better what they're doing?