Whirr2005-05-10
K to the I to the L and the T!
Sorry to have been silent here for so long, I've been busy. I have a kilt now, though! Woot! Sometime I'll post photos.

Utilikilts, the company that made it, promises, "We sell Freedom." It is certainly freeing. It took me a little while to get used to the feel of fresh air against my bare legs, and it still sometimes feels like I'm in that "forgot my pants in high school" dream. It's worked out pretty well, however. I'm not sure how well I'll like it come January (maybe I'll go back to pants, maybe I'll just get some long underwear and brightly colored stockings...) but for now it rocks.

Peoples' reactions have been surprising, too. I've been wearing it for most of a week, now, and have yet to receive any flack from anyone. The other day a bunch of loud neighborhood yoot yelled at me, "Hey Pink-Hair, you rock!" and I'm pretty sure they were in earnest. I decided before I'd even purchased it that I stood firmly against gender stereotyping and that, therefore, I was totally fine with wearing a "skirt". In other words, if I insisted that it be called a kilt I would essentially be insisting that I was not wearing "girl clothes", which would imply that it's wrong for me to wear clothing that has been culturally identified with a different gender-caste.

Anyway, so I decided up front that I was fine with "wearing a skirt", but it still surprises me how many strangers use that word. A number of people have complimented me on my kilt, or asked me if I was Scottish, but a lot of people tell me "nice skirt". That seems odd--I don't think these folks are being confrontational, but "skirt" isn't the safest term, I would have thought.

Two more observations: The biggest change of all is that I now have huge pockets on my lower garment. The kilt only has three pockets (of which one is a rear pocket, which I can't really use) but the two front pockets are huge. They are big enough for me to fit all of my essentials in, which means that for the first time in most of a decade I don't need to wear a suit jacket! For years now I was terrified of leaving my jacket at home, because I kept so many vital things in it. Things I carry all the time: Journal, pens, wallet, cell phone, extra battery, check book, Ventolin, keys, misc notes to myself. I don't use all of this every day, but on any particular day it has been disastrous to forget any of it (with the possible exception of my journal, which is merely inconvenient).

Rather than spend another day thinking "I wish I could call for a ride, but my spare cell phone battery is back at home, guess I'll just walk" I simply adopted the practice of wearing a jacket with enough pockets for everything. Always. Regardless of the heat. As it happened, I think I look quite good in a suit jacket, and to a certain extent I built my self-image around it. And now I don't have to. It's... weird.

Secondly, I really like the look of the kilt. The two rows of buttons look a little "Mad Max"-y to me. Also, it seems to go with my hair better than the suit jacket did. I'm not sure if this is because of some "wild Highlander warrior" association, or what. My legs are bright white, and a little shocking, but that will change in time.
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