As I lay dying on the closet floor, in the midst of Nothing to Wear, I closed my eyes for a moment. I saw Taylor Swift on stage singing her song “22” and I knew she wasn’t taunting me, really, but she kind of was because she was singing her song that she wrote herself, wearing a cute dress that looked adorable but not hootchie, smiling broadly and earning tons of money, fame, and love. If that’s not mocking me, I don’t know what is.
Suddenly, we were shopping together; I was dressed as a bag lady and she was dressed like Taylor Swift. We went to Target first, where she showed me her new CD for sale, and everyone wondered why she was talking to me. Then, we tried on clothes and I was distressed because the pants only had legs and nowhere to put your ass or pelvic region…but Taylor’s were normal and looked great and she put them in her buggy. Next, we tried on dresses and they were sausage casings…literally, and they smelled delicious and horrifying. Taylor didn’t buy one because Lady Gaga had already done the meat dress thing. I bought one and snacked on it.
I tried on more pants, piles and piles of pants that were elastic waisted and came up to my neck like a turtleneck. I left them on the floor of the dressing room and the workers started to call the mall cop. Then, from the Juniors department, a group of crazed Taylor Swift fans who were also vampires started coming towards us, snapping their fingers and singing “When You’re a Jet.” I grabbed a bow and arrow from Sporting Goods and killed them all. While running for the door, I grabbed a hospital gown and threw down $10. Taylor was scared but she grabbed my hand, called me a badass, and pulled me into her limo.
Our next stop was J. Crew, but we went through the Chick-Fil-A drive-thru on the way. We decided not to tell anyone that we ate there because we didn’t want to appear anti-gay. She got a Diet Coke. I got a kids-6-pack-nugget-meal and a large sweet tea. I really wanted the adult meal but I didn’t want to appear hungry. I also didn’t want to appear like an overweight American eating fast food.
When we got to J.Crew, I asked for something that Michelle Obama would wear. While I waited, the FLOTUS walked in! She looked ravishing and regal, and I swear, I could’ve planted her in my organic garden, watered her and fed her and given her sunlight for all eternity. Taylor was all up in her grill, talking her up and being adorable and sweet. I, wearing my Target hospital gown, realized that MO was bringing me a dress to try on. She smiled at me and said, “I like the dress you’re wearing, but you might like this one, too.” I took it to the dressing room, and cried a minute. I loved MO so much, not in a homosexual way, and not even in a it-would-be-cool-to-dip-in-the-lady-pond-once-with-her-but-then-it-would-make-our-friendship-awkward kind of way. She is just so cool and smart and who wouldn’t want her to be a Friend/Sister/Mother/Daughter. Her light shone on the dress when I came out, and I bought it. Then the Secret Service started snapping their fingers and singing “When You’re a Jet” and dancing menacingly my way, so I ran to Taylor’s limo and she and I started laughing and singing her song “22”, and I sang “42”, but Taylor didn’t mind.
She asked if I wanted to go to the beach, but I told her I didn’t have a swimsuit. She had the limo driver stop by a surf shop so we could get swimsuits. I asked if we could go to Lands’ End for a suit that minimizes the 8-years-post-pregnancy/breastfeeding bust, as well as flattening the 12-years-post-pregnancy tummy. She put a microscopic suit in my hands and said, let’s have fun. We wore them without washing them. I wore my hospital gown over it. We played in the waves and walked on the beach with fruity drinks. TMZ took pictures of us, but they cropped me out and said she was with Selena Gomez instead. Taylor sued them and gave the winnings to the Middle Aged Women Walking on Beaches with Celebrities Alliance.
She dropped me off at my house and I thanked her for being a relatively decent role model for my 8 year old daughter. She asked me if I would teach her to shoot a bow and arrow sometime, and I agreed. We hugged and I got out of the limo, looking for any neighbors that might have seen me. None were out, and as she drove away, I realized I had left my bags in the limo. I still had nothing to wear.
I opened my eyes and saw rows of limp, pale clothing above me. Faded sweaters, wrinkled blouses, ill-fitting chinos, wishful-thinking dresses, Glamour Don’ts galore…as I lay dying on my closet floor, I eyed an old box full of past lives. I reached for the book on top, a tattered copy of Charles Kuralt’s On the Road. I took a deep breath and began again.