Shiny, metallic pants must have been all the rage when I was in eighth grade. At least, I thought that was the case because I had three pairs of them in a variety of colors as my complete wardrobe that year.
Have you ever gone through old journals or pictures of yourself and thought, “Who allowed Richard Simmons to be my stylist?” or, “What would compel me to chronicle the details of eating at Frisch’s with my family as a quality diary entry?”
Going through boxes of childhood memorabilia can be a very humbling experience. Everyone tells you while you’re a teenager that you’re young and dumb, and of course that’s the last thing any kid wants to hear or believe. I went through a box of old stuff the other day and was appalled at how inane my writing was. The evidence that I encountered in that box argued that this is probably true. I decided that I must have been the most annoying thing on Earth in 1998 aside from Beanie Babies.
Exhibit A: Me at the pool with a friend, my grandma, and my sister. I’m probably about 10 or 11 here and if you could see Grandma’s “WTF” expression, you would know even she thought I was a lunatic.
Another poor life decision. Someone needed to have a unibrow intervention with me. (Just imagine brows like Bert and Ernie.) Also, sneakers should never have been worn with that outfit.
You see, the root of the problem is that my only example of fashion at this point in life was my mother. Mom dressed me until I was in fifth grade. There are pictures of me as a fourth grader sporting sweatsuits with cats, hearts and glitter on them. Even in 1995, this wasn’t acceptable. That was the day of bowl cuts, Michael Jordan jerseys, and flannel shirts. Wearing purple cotton from head to 4-inches-above-toe was how Mom thought I should roll. With that being said, we move to another disturbing image that I foreshadowed earlier.
There are almost no words for this. As I mentioned before, I had three pairs of these metallic pants in silver, pink, and gold. I owned no other pants besides these, as those who haven’t blocked middle school memories from their minds can attest. We won’t even go into the wig and hat.
We now move to the high school years. It came time for my freshman homecoming dance and my mom volunteered to do my hair. This ended up being the one and only time that my mom did my hair. You would think that the fact that she, to this day, has a mullet as her choice of hair style would be a gigantic red flag. However, it happened, and for hours that night, my friends had a multitude of laughs at this:
I was teased almost as much as my hair was that night.
Unfortunately, that was far from the end of my poor choices. This last gem falls into the “awkward prom photo” category. The best part about this one is that I coerced my now-husband into growing out his hair for my prom. Thus, I created a tragic image for both of us to treasure for life.
There are so many places to go with this one. Starting with the obvious, you have the awkward prom pose. Next, you have my horrid dress color choice, which blends into my pasty albino skin. Then, the decision to wear gloves which are too big for my spindly arms and a tiara, which no one should ever wear unless their mother is the queen. Finally, you can see I forced him into growing a circa 1999 Justin Timberlake white boy ‘fro, which speaks for itself.
Luckily, I attended Miami University (aka J. Crew U) after high school, where I learned that you never match your eyeshadow to your shirt and wearing screen printed tees with clever sayings is not as attractive as you might think.
I would call the subject of this post my awkward phase, but it’s not exactly a phase when it lasts for 20 years, is it?
It makes me feel better to know that everyone can relate with feelings of shame about your younger years. I mean, we’ve all been there, right?
Awkward pat on the shoulder, at least?