3 Feb 2015

Hestia and Juno | Clothing disasters

This could be me.
The clothes, not the Colin Firth.
If there is ONE phrase that strikes fear into my heart and mirth into Tartarus's, it's my mother saying: "I've just laid out some clothes for you to take a look at."

It's not that she has poor taste.

It's just different taste to mine.

It's 78 year-old lady taste.

Mother buys clothes for real or imagined holidays. All frocks are for sunny days in Greek temperatures.  All trousers are measured against the yardstick of 'golfing in America' or 'travelling clothes unlikely to attract a pick-pocket's attention'.  The general standard for all of my mother's clothing purchases is: If it's not got sequins on it then, frankly, it's not for her.

Reader, cast your mind back to Bridget Jones and how her mother left a Christmas outfit out for her on the bed when she came to visit.  My girlfriend and I peed ourselves laughing in the cinema because that could have been MY MOTHER and my friend knew my regular hell that is 'My Mother's Passed-Down Clothes'.

So it came to pass that on Sunday morning as Tartarus and I roused ourselves from sleep she poked her head around the bedroom door and said: "I've just laid out some clothes for you to take a look at."

"Ah, right-o" I said weakly.

Tartarus started sniggering.

"I bought myself these pyjamas from QVC and they don't really fit me.  Can't wear a legging to bed, you know."

For the MILLIONTH time I wondered why she didn't just package them up and send them back to QVC, they positively INVITE you to do that if you're not happy with something.  Like a crotch that cannot cope with leggings in bed.

Feeling pretty sure that my own crotch would not be happy with leggings in bed, I took a look at the pile of stuff.

'Today," I thought, "I will be FIRM and not take anything that is horrid."

On top of the pile were the jammies.  Complete with fuchsia pink dressing gown.  Tartarus giggled.  I LIKE fuchsia pink. I lifted the jammies - crotch-gobbling leggings and all - and dropped it into our tiny overnight suitcase.

Tartarus stopped giggling.  'You won't be wearing that? In BED? Your mother's PJ's IN OUR BED?'

Reader, I wouldn't mind if we were Active in the Conjugals Department, but that track is now overgrown with weeds through lack of use.  If you catch what I'm saying.....

"What difference does it make? Jammies are jammies,"  I retorted with the wisdom of Buddha.

The next item was a t-shirt.  Heavily sequinned of course.  Butterflies.  I really didn't want it and laid it to one side.

Next up was a massive, MASSIVE purple cowl-necked sweater.  I am also rather partial to purple.  Into the case it went.

And a nice lime-green skinny knit sweater with a bow.

I know.

I think I must have gypsy blood - I very much like odd colour combinations.  My dad always thought that my mother's side of the family had some sort of strange blood.  We likes our garish sparkly stuff. But I'm verrrry particular - not my mother's strange sparkly stuff.

We're either of roma extraction or else we're colour-blind.  One or the other.  Could be both.

Of course, the sparkly t-shirt DID come home with us because despite my best efforts to be HARD and BOUNDARY AWARE, my point of view is never any match for my mother's.  I am Andy Murray to my mother's Roger Federer - I try hard, REALLY hard, but she always beats me in the end.

I'm sure that I'll wear it sometime.  Maybe the next time I'm playing golf on a Greek course when I'm on a cruise.....


  1. Just give it all to the charity shop. If she asks, you can always claim it got mangled in the washing machine or that you wore it so often that it wore out :)

    1. It's slowly heading that way. I shall wear everything a couple of times, wash and iron and take down to the charity shop. Then I can hold my head up and say that YES, I have worn it!!

  2. Oh lord, this made me laugh! My other half thinks I'm at the opposite end of "color and sparkle." He's sure I came from some tribe that had to hide in the woods wearing dull earth-tone colors. :)

    1. I think I might have been cross-bred with a magpie - love a bit of sparkle and bling. May also resort to thievery to get it lol!

  3. I always wanted to be a gypsy......perhaps you could get creative and re-imagine the garments!!x

    1. I could send you pix, there's nothing about these that could be re-imagined - unless the imagining was done by Hieronymous Bosch :-D

  4. I'm with Ania - items given to me by my mum often find there way (after a couple of days) to our local charity shop. I do like the sound of your mum's colour & sparkle habit though

    1. I'm really glad that she likes blingy clothes - it's lovely opening her wardrobe and seeing everything glittering like jewels - but I live in a cold, dark, draughty Victorian house. Sparkles ain't required. Thermals are :-D

  5. This sounds a bit like me and my Gran... however she does have some real hits in the lot, so I manage not to cringe when she says she's got something for me. :)

    1. You're lucky, Asha! There are no hits in my mother's wardrobe unless I decide to become a drag queen :-D

  6. My mother and I wear totally different colours, and she's good with that, so I'm saved from this kind of hell :D I like the sound of the butterfly t-shirt, personally...

  7. i must say that other than a serious difference in height (my mother's trousers, are shortish capris on me), my mom and i share taste and regularly exchange clothing. it's nice.
    my mother-in-law, on the other hand, though she manages to get some real wins, tends towards triple XXXL which makes me wonder how large she perceives me to be. i try not to get offended.

  8. You don't have to wear the clothes properly, out, yanno ? put the T-shirt on to do the hoovering - it still counts as you having worn it :)

  9. I LOVED this post, familar to me in the "not wanting to hurt one's mother's feelings so taking stuff you don't want" sort of way. With Grandma Whacker it used to be furniture, which is harder to hide. There was a saga about a table and chairs combo years ago, thankfully returned to the warehouse in the sky after much careful negotiation. But your mum sounds lovely and great fun, you only give sequinned butterflies to those you love xx


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