I am sitting on the train, minding my business, reading a book when I notice a hand waving slowly to get my attention. I look up at the smiling woman standing before me.
“Good morning.” I return the smile.
“I just wanted to say I love your outfit. It looks really nice on you.”
Before I could finish saying “Why thank you!” we hear someone just off to the side.
“You would look better if you had on heels and not sneakers.”This comes from a guy standing beside her.
“Who the hell asked you?” The woman glares at him.
“I was just paying her a compliment.”
“No you were not.” I shake my head, bookmarking my spot. Not that there is ever a good time for such nonsense, but it’s early in the morning and I haven’t had coffee yet! It’s a bit not good.
“I love your outfit is a compliment. And thank you again by the way.” I smile again at the woman, then turned back to him and continued. “You would look better if you had on heels is a completely unasked for critique designed to shame me into dressing the way YOU feel I should look for your acceptance and viewing pleasure. Neither of which I consented to. I guarantee you that when I made my clothing choices this morning my prevalent thought was not oooh let me put on some stilettos so I can be the objectified personification for some guy’s possible shoe fetish ideal of how I should look.”
Because I whisper like a fog horn, my voice carries. A few snickers verifies this, but obstinate, he presses his point, “Still, you have to admit it would look better.”
And now I’m annoyed.
“Even if I agreed with you, which I do not, do you expect me to run home and change just for you? Are you my…? Actually, wait…” I make a show of lifting my sunglasses as I look him up and down carefully assess him. “No, I’m right, you’re not.” I shake my head, having made my decision.
I let my shades fall back into place as I return to reading my book, mentally dismissing him.
“I’m not?” he asks, understandably confused, “I’m not what?”
The man sitting beside me face palms and shakes his head. The woman who complimented me is snickering lightly, both having gathered the point which has clearly sailed over the wannabe Project Runway‘s fashion guru Tim Gunn’s head.
“I took off my sunglasses to be sure, but I was correct in my initial assessment.” I explained with the exaggerated patience one reserves for speaking to a misbehaving child in which they are in no position to discipline. “You’re not my physician. You’re not my children. You’re not my best friend. You’re not a deity. You’re not any of my lovers.” His eyebrows rise at lovers, but I ignore him. “Not that it would necessarily change my opinions in regards to my wardrobe choices, but when it comes to the very select few whose opinions I would at least take into consideration, you’re not one of them. So sod off! But since we’re putting in opinions where not asked, let alone wanted here’s mine: you looked so much better with your mouth shut, can you go back to that look?”
I stare at him waiting for a retort. After a moment of annoyed silence from him, I don my best Billy Crystal impersonation:
“You look, MARH-velous dahling!”
I guess the next station was his stop, at least that is where he got off. It as better than my telling him where he could get off.
It is Day 11 of the March Slice of Life Writing Challenge. Stop in and see how others are slicing it up!