01 January 2007

Class and clothes

Julia:

I'm Julia, and I'll be blogging here now too. For the sake of full disclosure, I'll disclose one fact. Fact #1: I am an acquaintance and, at times, friend of Kelley's. Okay, that's all the disclosing I'll do for now. (Best to remain somewhat mysterious for now, so as to draw you into my cavernous meanderings later.)

I'm blogging from Boston, where I'm visiting college friends for the holiday. The minute I stepped off the plane in Boston, my first thought was: Why did I own 7 identical black peacoats during the four years I lived here? My second thought was a response to the first: Living in Boston is causally related to owning a black peacoat. (There are 2.1 million of naked peas in Boston, homeless and, worse, coatless, as recorded by the most recent census.) Anyway, after I started wearing peacoats, my midwestern high school friends told me I was being bourgie. Which is probably true.


A friend told me, once, about a guy she knew in college who wore a suit and carried a briefcase to class every day for four years. He was poor, and couldn't afford a full wardrobe; and furthermore, a decent suit doesn't betray the tatters of class in the way that ill-fitting jeans and outdated overcoats can. On the other hand, many of my colleagues now are white guys with parents who are professors, who wear worn khakis, torn t-shirts and old but well-cut sneakers to campus UAW (labor union) meetings. As far as I'm concerned, this kid who wears a three-piece suit to classes wears his suit just like my unionizing colleagues wear their torn tatters. With aspirations of transcending class origins.

I have to go now. I smell cookies baking in the other room.

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