Thursday, June 20, 2013

Thinking in Pink: not an oxymoron

Sunglasses: thrift; Earrings and smaller ring: vintage; Larger ring: Effy; Bracelet: from Barefoot Contessa; Blouse: I seem to have cut out the tag so who knows? But I got it at the Jean Queen ; Skirt: thrift; Shoes: Ecco
Remember the last time big huge rose patterns were en vogue? Yeah, that's right. It was the 80s. I had a Laura Ashley dress, splashed with big rose clusters that I loved at the time but look back on with great embarrassment. 

But why? Most of us who remember the 80s can agree that most of the fashion was awful. But the floral thing? Was it really that bad? It's quite... pretty.

So here I am, posing in front of the college where I teach, sporting huge rose clusters once again. And looking just fine, I think, despite my trepidation about repeating fashions past.

Beau laughed at these sunglasses (in which you can see him) when I got them. I don't know why. I think they're fashionable and fetching and I don't care what he thinks... much.
There was a time when I would not have worn something so feminine to teach a class. I wanted to be Taken Seriously and felt that such an overt embracing of the feminine would prevent that from happening.

But I've been teaching for a long time now and I'm confident that I know what I'm doing. I can teach Cat on a Hot Tin Roof in old dungarees or bedecked with pink roses. I know my stuff and my students know I know my stuff.

One of the perks of my job is that we really don't have a dress code so I decided a while ago never to buy clothes for work, but only to buy clothes for myself. The outfits would work themselves out and I'd feel much more like myself in the classroom.

Besides, who the hell says that pink and brains don't go together? That's just sexism, isn't it? A woman in pink can think!

These earrings proved to be a hit with my students anyway. Two students complimented me on them them as soon as I sat down at my desk. When I told them that the earrings are ceramic, they were amazed. I guess they assume everything is plastic?

After work, Beau came and picked me up in a co-op car which we had to drop off right next to this community garden.

I love the garden's whimsical shed that reminds me of nothing more than a hobbit home.

It is indicative both of my neighbourhood and of my city that such eco-whimsy exists in the shadow of some of the less savory aspects of urban living.

Above me is our rapid transit system and, behind that, a medical and office building. This little area is well known for crack, meth, and heroin and Beau and I passed several drug users on our way home.

But there was this garden right in the middle of it all, and a nice little residential street butting up against it. It's like that here. Even the areas with the ugliest social problems are green and pretty, and real neighbourly neighbourhoods are everywhere, coexisting with these problems. I'm used to it.

I just had to pose by this Volkswagon and motor cycle. As a child of hippies, I practically grew up in Volkswagon bugs, and my father has a passion for vintage and antique motorcycles to this day. Here, then, I am in a familiar setting.

Look at those cute, droopy eyes... on the bug, not on me.

Notice the weird stucco on the walls? It is an odd quirk of my city that many of our houses are sided with ugly stucco in greys, whites, pinks, and greens. Much of it is decorated with shards of broken glass. Seriously. It sparkles nicely in the sun, but it's as sharp as... well, broken glass. As a child, I frequently had cuts and scrapes just from accidentally brushing up against my own house!

This one is stucco too, but not the sharp kind, thank God.

I'd never met this kitty before. Beau, trying to get me home quickly, stupidly said, "There is no cute kitty on that balcony. No there isn't." Of course, I immediately looked and there was this sweet cat who came when I called him. He (the cat, not Beau) and I snuggled and chatted for a bit. He (also the cat, not Beau) did most of the talking.

Then he said goodbye and I haven't seen him since. I will though. I hope.

I'm linking this up to Visible Mondays at Not Dead Yet.


  1. Thank you for linking up to Visible Monday, and sharing your rosy outfit. I really like the bracelet. And the black cat!

  2. I love the earrings - those are really beautiful. I learned to drive on a '66 VW bug, and my family and friends must have owned at least two dozen over the years in the '70s and '80s. One day I'd love to drive one again - an old one, with a stick shift, bad heater, and AM radio!

    1. Sounds like you were raised by hippies too, Val. Now, I don't even have a driver's license! Never have.

  3. I loved the big, blowzy roses. Better on upholstery than on me, but I wore them anyway. Your outfit is charming and summery. Isn't it nice to dress however you wish for work? I'd think, Charlotte, that you look perfectly appropriate in your classroom. Your look is "updated 80s" with your sharp pleats.
    Thanks for the tour of your environs and the kitty bomb, as well.

    1. "Kitty bomb." That's funny.

      I bought the skirt second hand in the 90s so it may well be from the 80s. Who knows?

  4. Giant cabbage roses on black ground: check. Whaddayamean it's outdated? I obtained some in nylon/spandex that'll make a great swimsuit... someday...

    I've never heard of glass-in-stucco. But love the colors of the black cat's house.

    Thanks for linking up with 52 Pick-me-up! Great to see new faces!

    1. The pink garage wall is glass in stucco. It's just bizarre. The blue house is also stucco, sans glass. I love the colours of that place. It's just changed hands and some idiot drove a truck over part of the gorgeous garden. I'm nervous to see what they do to that place. It's just on the corner near me. When I was more crippled and only able to walk a block (and even that took months to be able to do), I'd walk to this house and admire their garden, and pet their cat, whom I'd trained to stand on a railing so I didn't hurt my back bending down to her.