Sunday, October 08, 2006

Shopping for a Dress

Miss Healthypants (also known as "The Hag" and "Poodle" and "Poo") and I had been looking forward to this day for a couple of weeks. I even took a personal day off work for this occasion. Finally, The Day arrived. We were shopping for a new dress for her to wear to a friend's wedding.

This is the type of activity The Hag and I live for.

I met Miss HP and her husband, Iwanski, for lunch yesterday at a Cajun place. We had been there before and I hadn't liked the fried oysters they had. Miss HP reminded me that they had lots of other things besides fried oysters. Iwanski was fond of the Angry Chicken, for example.

So, of course, I order the fried oyster Po' Boy. Miss HP ordered a shrimp salad from the Healthy-Pants menu and Iwanski ordered the Angry Chicken which he let me taste. Indeed, I could readily sense the anger in this chicken.

After sending back my fried oyster Po' Boy for a shrimp one, we were on our way. Iwanski thanked me a lot for taking his wife shopping for a dress as this was something with which he really didn't want to be involved. He even bought my lunch out of gratitude. Nice guy. I told him, "This is what I'm here for. No, really. Existentially, this is why I am here."

Miss HP and I headed for a nearby Ann Taylor shop, a suggestion by Lorraine. (hi, wave) who was also looking forward to our dress-shopping expedition.

Outside the Ann Taylor shop, I did a couple of deep knee bends, some shoulder rolls and said, "Okay, Poo. Let's do it. . . ."

"Hey! Gauchos are back!" I was so excited over that. But we weren't there for gauchos. There were some nice things, and like Lorraine had told us, the things that were on sale were really great buys. The dress we tried on was just a little too plain, though. Gosh, did I just say, "we?"

Onward. Macy's was next. (Iwanski, I'm just kidding!) Macy's had recently bought out Marshall Fields, a Chicago institution. Since Iwanski was born and raised in Chicago, Macy's was verboten. Frankly, I've no problem with it since I had lived in New York City before coming to Chicago. Mark my words. The first time Macy's has their bargain-basement sale, lots of Chicagoans will be there. Maybe even Iwanski.

We headed to Carson's where we found lots of nice things. I parked myself in a chair right outside the dressing room and ushered Miss HP in and out with various dresses, applying witty comments. I had my camera with me and you can see the pics here. (Unfortunately, I had the flash turned off on my camera, so the pics came out a little blurry).

We were having a ball. I had perfected my Karen Walker, "Oh, honey. No!" response pretty well, mainly to other women besides Miss HP.

Then we found it. When she walked out, I swear I heard angels in three part harmony, Aaaaaahh, Aaaaahhh. A very nice dress, perfect for a wedding and most importantly, perfect for dancing after the wedding. It was black with a nice snug white lace cummerbund type of thing around the waist, dotted ever so tastefully with a few sequins. Since the wedding is at the Planetarium, Miss HP will be continuing the stars-in-the-universe theme with her killer dress. It also has a sheer black gauze-type of overlay that hangs down about an inch below the hem line, giving the hem a shadow. See that in the pic? Click on the pic! It's almost an optical illusion which is so cool. The cummerbund (I don't know what else to call it) also gives just the right amount of push-up to "the girls." It's as if this dress was made for Miss HP.

We head back to their apartment to model it for Iwanski. (It's so nice living downtown where everything is within walking distance). As soon as Miss HP came out in the dress, The Cat immediately found a great deal of interest in the gauze-type overlay and leaped up with claws splayed. Bad cat! Bad cat! No damage was done, but I held The Cat in a half-nelson while Miss HP spun around in the dress. Wow! It's a perfect dress for twirling. As Lorraine said, she'll be known as Miss Dancey-Pants in this thing.

We headed out for shoes after getting something to drink. It's important to stay hydrated during vigorous activity, you know. While at Sears, I hit the motherload: Dockers sweater-vests were on sale! I don't think anything says "me" more than Dockers sweater-vests. God, that's sad.

No shoes there. We try Pay-Less. None there but I did find a hilarious pair and took a pic. See previous post.

We decided to put off the shoe shopping for a while. It had been such an exciting day. We headed to Target as a cool-down. Iwanski wanted Kashi bars and Miss Dancey-Pants needed some jeans. I went for underpants but found a nice pair of khakis.

After Target, we went to the grocery store for more essentials. This was a different store than where we usually go. This one was was very close to my workplace. I was concerned that some of my clients might see me there with an attractive woman and make incorrect assumptions about me. Mind you, I'm not "out" with my clients about anything in my personal life (as a counselor, that's as it should be). Still, I kept a look-out, being there with a woman and all. Not that there's anything wrong with that. But still. . .

It was a great day. I wore new shoes and my doggies are really sore today. Looking back on it, I'm reminded of a line from my favorite film, Babette's Feast:

Throughout the ages, there exists a great cry from the soul of an artist: 'Just once, give me the chance to do my very best!'


At 3:36 PM , Blogger Lorraine said...

The dress is fab and I'm so happy that you were able to fulfill your true calling.


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