THE BENEFITS OF UNIFORM
by Sheila White
(Cambridge, Ontario, Canada)
CLOTHES MAKETH THE WOMAN
If you’ve ever worn a uniform, proud as you were at first, you were always happy to get home, take it off and climb into your worn and comfy pyjamas.
I’ve worn uniform during two stages of my life and remember that well. Yet now, in my late 80’s, living in a seniors’ complex, I find myself longing to wear uniform again.
The following seemingly doesn’t apply to single senior males. They continue with their usual dress routines, not caring who they please or displease, but I’ve come to realize that what we ladies wear is all-important. Before leaving our apartments we must choose an outfit that is stylish, fairly new, and carefully coordinated. If not, we hear about it from our ‘friends’.
Approaching a female neighbour in the corridor, the first thing we notice about her is her hair, then the colour of her outfit. Then the pairing of tops with bottoms, and lastly shoes. Next we offer some words of appreciation, which, if not given, leaves the examined one with a sense of something missing. What have I done wrong? Should I go back and change?
Beware the mistake of wearing the same outfit worn yesterday. Suddenly we become senile in the eyes of our friends, who start looking for other signs of decay. Didn’t she forget my name just now? Oh, yes, she is slipping, I can tell. And the examiner congratulates herself that she doesn’t make that mistake.
Or does she? We don’t always catch our own signs of deterioration. We remember a name, but it really belongs to someone else. We start the day with a top we wore yesterday, telling ourselves that we will change before appearing in public – then forget. And woe betide if we go out in slippers! Someone is sure to notice.
A friend told me yesterday that she is losing weight and some of her clothes are getting too big. She wears them anyway. But a certain person is sure to point this out before the day is finished. Another, having had fruit at lunch, allows a spot of juice to mar her blouse and doesn’t notice. But others do and remark on it with a certain amount of satisfaction.
If this annoys you as much as it does me, what to do? My solution is to suggest a Seniors’ uniform. It should be simple, comfortable and washable. One colour only. No embellishments that might bring forth remarks. Others may wear what they wish, but those in uniform don’t have to worry about criticism…
…unless the uniform gets too big, too small or become marred in some way. We will all be sure to notice and be kind enough to let you know.
Wendy: Oh No! That's my mom you are talking about... always turning a critical eye on me daily! "Didn't do much with your hair today?" Grin! Oh well, its just her conversation... but I do know the women you speak of.
Kinda sad, shallow gals, nothing more to chat about....
Funny and oddly true story... love it!