Because I work at the happiest place on earth, once a year during the week leading up to our company picnic, we have a spirit week just for the heck of it. Basically we all come to work in a series of ridiculous outfits each day, depending on the theme. (Well, not all of us, but all the cool kids.) One of the themes this year was “Era Day.” Instead of choosing a specific decade, they just told us to dress in the style of whichever era we chose. (That explanation was for any of you who just couldn’t quite wrap your minds around “Era Day”. You’re welcome.) The costumes were pretty evenly distributed across the 50’s, 60’s, 70’s and 80’s.
Personal note: I am generally repulsed by anything made in the 80’s - including all music and clothing; excluding babies and Molly Ringwald movies. Please don’t come whining to me in a state of huffy indignation or ask me what’s wrong with me or try to talk me out of my abhorrence. Just discussing it makes me want to vomit pink and turquoise.
Something that struck me was that not one person out of the near 200 employees in our building chose to represent the 90’s. I saw one girl with a Walkman and a Coca-Cola t-shirt and started to congratulate her on what I considered to be a great representation of the 90’s, only to be informed that she, like most other people, was going for the 80’s.
I guess I get it. The style of the 90’s was definitely a little more ambiguous than the four preceding decades (although it’s a lot more easily defined than whatever the decade is called between 2000 and 2010. It’s like we didn’t even try. We just spent ten years copying ideas from the past seventy and then doused ourselves in glitter and called it fashion.) Or maybe it just didn’t seem like enough of a challenge. Maybe not washing your hair and throwing on an oversized flannel shirt just doesn’t seem like as much fun as pin curls and red lipstick or bell bottoms and a water bong. Or maybe - and this is what I feel must be the most rational explanation - for some people it wouldn’t have been enough of a difference from their everyday wear.
I’m not trying to insult anyone in particular. I’m trying to insult Colorado Springs as a whole.
Alright, so I ♥ the 90’s almost as much as VH1, but WHAT IS IT with this town? It’s like I drove through 800 miles of flat land and meat processing plants and suddenly I’m in some kind of alternate universe in which everyone still travels by skateboard and uses the word “duuuuuuuuuude” in place of phrases like, “I can’t believe I passed the 10th grade,” or, “I’m so sorry to hear that your mother died.” I am aware that flannel is sort of “in” right now. That’s fine. But mark my words, if I see one more exposed belly button while I’m eating lunch downtown, I’m like, totally going to kill someone. Okay and don’t even get me started on that floor length denim jumper/tennis shoes combo that just walked past my desk. That’s a whole different ball game.
I had a conversation with my sister right after she moved up here during which we both just sat there wondering, “Where are all the cute people?” It’s not like we’re snobby, ok, but we came from the land of deep brown tans, shades of blonde that can only be achieved through extensive peroxide therapy, and teeth so white they’re kinda see through. What I’m saying is, we’re used to looking at pretty people (furthered by the fact that we both own mirrors.) So you can imagine the culture shock when we entered the Land of the Great Unwashed. There are like, real hippies here. Lots of them. I hear it’s worse up in Boulder, and that is why I plan never to go there.
Maybe it’s the economy. There are not a lot of jobs here. So the question is: Has that tie-dyed-heart baby tee really lasted you fifteen years? Or - I shudder at the thought - are there actually retailers out there still selling this garbage?
Colorado Springs, it’s time for a makeover. I’m not asking you to purchase a whole new wardrobe. I’m just asking you to take a shower, and maybe wear something that would make it a little easier for me to distinguish you from a homeless person. There’s nothing that irritates me more than handing someone a ten dollar bill out of the goodness of my heart, only to realize later they were a student at the extremely expensive private college downtown who was just waiting outside of Chipotle for their classmates to find a parking spot big enough to park the Jag.