(Off) Kilter


A few days ago, I got a compliment from one of Joes’ coworkers (and I think I’m using the term compliment loosely) and it went a little like this: “You know how I know you’ve got good style? Because I don’t really always understand what you’re wearing.”

Really? When he said this, I was wearing a mis-matched bandeau bikini and plaid straw fedora. So I get it. A little.

Especially coming from someone who probably owns more Brooks Brothers blue button-downs than anyone should admittedly own.  As a matter of fact, his wife and I got to talking about said blue button-downs and we came to the conclusion that just because the blue button-down that you just bought has a different size white stripe, doesn’t qualify it as anything other than just another friggin’ blue button-down. *Important side note* As she (who is fabulous) and I were having this conversation, I saw the next 15 years of my life flash before me, and the forthcoming conversation(s) I’ll be having with my guy about his abundant collection of blue button-down shirts. Not all of his are from Brooks Brothers, so there’s that. Give it 10 years, though. I’m betting that’ll change. Awesome.

Back to the compliment at hand. I get it- my style is a little quirky. A little off-kilter, if you will. I wear black motorcycle boots and don’t own a motorcycle. Black is my favorite color. I own more striped clothing than most French women. I wear cut off Levi’s with silk tops. And I don’t wear sweat pants. Ever. Even around the house. I don’t believe in sweat pants. They are a dirty word in my closet. Oh and I don’t like pearls. They are just not me. And I don’t believe that just because I’m southern, that I should own a pearl necklace.** I enjoy being contradicting in my style. That’s what style is all about: expressing the different facets of your personality through the clothes that you wear. My life is all about juxtapositions and so is my wardrobe. So maybe it’s not my clothes that are off-kilter, maybe it’s just me.

This got me thinking, in order to be great at something, must one be a little misunderstood? All the great thinkers, designers, philosophers were all a little crazy in their time. No one really gave gravity any legitimacy when that guy had the apple fall on his head. Nope, they thought he was a witch. No one agreed with John Lennon when he said all you need is love. Instead, some lunatic shot him. No one quite understands Lady Gaga and her haus but it doesn’t mean that she isn’t fantastic, lobster and telephone hair and all. All those amazing women of the feminist movement were (upcoming huge understatement) slightly frowned upon but it doesn’t mean that I wouldn’t burn the hell out of some bras right along with them.   

So to be a great thinker, must one be a little kooky? Must one be classified as ahead of the times? I’m not saying that I am any of these things. I’m sure my parents and I enjoy thinking so but I’m so not there yet. I wouldn’t dare categorize myself as Gaga with her bizarre creativity or imagine myself a compassionate and provocative thinker a la John Lennon. I am, however, saying that it may be one of the best compliments ever to be told that you aren’t understood. It might just mean that your fabulousness is ahead of other people’s fabulousness and they just don’t get it yet.

I am promising myself now, to never allow the fact that someone- or a lot of someone’s- may not understand my logic to discourage me from following or writing my dreams. They may not follow me, they may not think that I have any clue of what I’m talking about or doing; but that’s A-okay in my world because I don’t do what I do for them. I do what I do for moi. And if they like it, great!! If not, then that’s great, too. I still think they’re fabulous.  

**Diamonds on the other hand, I’ll gladly take just because I’m a female and supposed to like diamonds. Well, not just because I’m a female- I just like my life to sparkle.  



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