For Christmas this year, I got a couple of new pairs of pants for work. This was a good thing, since I really needed some new pants for work, since Carrie made me throw out a couple of pairs that I had apparently outgrown, or were so worn or so far out of fashion so as to be slightly embarrassing for everyone involved.
Unfortunately, I still haven't come to complete terms with my expanding waistline. I asked for pants with a 34 inch waist, just like most of the pants I already own, even though the chances of any of those pants fitting me usually depends on the particular cut, how many days in a row I've worn the pants without washing them in order to stretch them out, and general luck. Oh yeah, there are also my "motion-flex" pants which allow for a more "customized" fit. Basically, they have an elastic waistband. Carrie finds this very amusing. I wear them entirely too much because they are comfortable. I ignore the fact that the cuffed bottoms leave them entirely too short and I've never been able to exactly figure what color they are. Occasionally they look green, sometimes brown, sometimes tan. I think they may be made out of the same material as mood rings.
I do own a couple pairs of jeans with a 36 inch waist, but I have generally treated those as, you know, comfortable pants,almost like pajama bottoms. When it comes to dressing professionally, I squeeze myself into the 34's or give myself a bit of breathing room in the "motion-flex" mood ring pants.
So that's that. I circled some pants I liked in my in-law's LL Bean catalog and helpfully if stubbornly noted that I wear 34-32's. Christmas Eve, I get two stylish looking new pairs of trousers, 34-32.
"You sure those will fit?" Carrie asks as I throw out the packaging.
"Oh yeah," I said. "All my work pants are 34s."
Three days later, as Carrie is trying on some of the clothes she got for Christmas, I decide to try on my LL Bean pants, just for fun, of course. Squeeze them up to my waistline, get the zipper about half-way up, take a really deep breath, and finish the process.
"How do they fit?" she asks.
"Fit great," I gasp.
"Let me see," she says.
So I do my fashion show. Lift up my shirt to show off the fit, my little basketball of a belly spilling over the waistline, which may actually be rolling down to accommodate said belly (although this is still under protest). In addition to the waistline, the fit a little bit, well, lower down, makes it look like I'm trying out as the replacement bass player for an 80's hairband reunion. Just a bit snug, we'll say.
"There's no way in hell you're wearing those out of the house," she says.
"What," I said. "They fit fine, just like all my other pants. Look, the length's good."
No go. I agree to send the pants back for a less obscene fit.
Which I'm not too overly disappointed about, since I'm starting to turn a little blue.