I smell really good today. I love it when I use a shampoo that I haven't used in a long time and the scent is super-noticeable all day. I'll be sitting there thinking, "Mmm...something sure smells good," and then I realize that it's ME! It sure makes me feel good.
Scents don't always ake me feel good. I buy fragrance-free deodorant, laundry soap, regular soap, and hairspray. The smell of other people's perfume or cologne makes me nauseous and usually gives me a headache. Throughout the years I have had to abandon many beloved personal grooming products because they would literally make me sick. However, I have found that not only can I tolerate the spicy, sandalwoody, pachouli-ish family of smells, I LOVE them. I love their warm, earthiness and their association with folk festivals and incense and exotic countries. And thanks to this wonderful shampoo that my friend Cake bought me, that's exactly what I smell like today.
I think I love these smells because I don't get much of a chance to express who I am through my appearance. I hear so many women complain about the lack of shopping opportunities in my city but let me tell you this: until you've tried to buy clothes here as a fat female, you have NO IDEA how crappy it is. I basically have 3 or 4 stores to choose from. Period. And none of these stores carry clothes that I think are me, so I end up dressing for comfort rather than how something looks. Don't get me wrong - I don't go to my office job in sweats and a pair of thongs (the foot kind, not the underwear kind). However, I do come to work in baggy, stretchy, and/or elastic-filled clothes. I figure if I'm going to look hideous to varying degrees, I might as well be comfortable, too.
I buy shoes the same way. Skinny people may not realize this but when you're fat, everything's fat, including your feet. I need wide shoes and those are a rarity in our trendy shoe stores we have in my city. I also walk A LOT, so whatever I buy must be comfortable. As a result, when I'm shoe shopping I have to pass on all those adorable, funky, cool sheos and go for the "sensible" variety. This means that I end up looking like an old lady or a butchy lesbian. (As a bi chick, there are worse things than looking like a lez but face it, they're not known for being uber-fashionable.)
This frumpy exterior is also one of the reasons I like to talk about myself. Our society puts a lot of stock in first impressions (this site says it takes THREE SECONDS for someone to make up their mind about a person). I'm not sure I like the conclusions that are likely drawn after seconds of seeing me. Boring. Schlubby. Uninteresting. Unexciting. Not words I want associated with me. So I talk and talk and talk about myself. "I've travelled! I'm passionate about politics! I'm a treehugger! I'm musically-inclined! I love art and photography! I read! I cook! I have 3 degrees! I'm not boring, I swear!" I want everyone to know everything about me right away so that I can overrule that awful first impression. Mysterious and private I am not.
So here I am in my ghastly tapered pants with an elastic waist, my stretchy cotton t-shirt, and my loafers, writing all about myself. But boy-oh-boy, I sure smell good!