They walked by from all corners of the world. Lots of Midwesterners, to be sure; they were the ones used to the weather. But there were folks from all over the nation and world as well. There were heavily-veiled women who showed only their eyes to the world. There were men in bib overalls and many more in very expensive suits. There were Amish men and women in their custom attire and, like the nuns of my own faith, it seemed that the Amish almost always traveled in groups.
Yes, I've had the chance to do a little people watching in the past week or so. In fact, I've had a lot of time to do a lot of people watching. I have come to a conclusion and this is it: 97.3 percent of the population not only could be nominated for "What Not To Wear," but indeed should be nominated for that snippy cable TV show, "What Not to Wear." This is not a scientific study, only the opinion of a little farmer's wife from the other side of the river, and it carries a margin of error of plus 2.7 percent. That's right, not plus or minus 2.7 percent, but definitely plus 2.7 percent.
Let's face it people, we need help.
What started all this was the day I noticed I several women - fellow Midwesterners, I'm sure - wearing capri pants and snow boots! What were they thinking, I wanted to know. Capri pants in January? Did they want to show off their snow boots, most of which were the dressy kind that aren't really any good in snow, or are they just stuck in some decade I never want to revisit. The combination reminded me of those awful gaucho pants I successfully avoided in the '70s and '80s. Besides, no one anywhere close to my height should ever wear gaucho pants. And actually, I like capri pants because they are often just the right length on my length-challenged legs.
But before I bash myself or the rest of the working population here, let's talk a little bit about Stacy and Clinton themselves. They are, of course, the often snooty and always bossy hosts of "What Not To Wear" that beat people down for what they wear before taking them to New York City for a $5,000 shopping spree. You give me a $5,000 shopping spree in Iowa and I can buy enough clothes for a decade, but in New York City I think we Iowans would have a tough time getting enough clothes for all four seasons.
Stacy reminds me of Jackie from "That '70s Show," shallow and conceited. And Clinton, I can't print what the Tall One says about him, but I'll just say those sweater vests have got to go. (By the way, I should make it clear that the Tall One never watches "What Not To Wear." He just sneers at it before stealing the remote and changing the channel.) Anyway, Stacy and Clinton definitely need a make over themselves.
But I'm not done yet, the show's hair dresser and makeup artist also leave much to be desired. That hairdresser - who needs a trim - gives everyone the same do. He cuts, cuts, cuts, and I've seen some of the victims of this show want to absolutely cry. A good hairdresser never makes their customer cry. He never works with what a person has, but gives them what he wants to give them. I really think if Farrah Fawcett had been his client he would have given her a Dorothy Hammill bob.
The makeup artist, well, actually she's not so bad. Her makeup looks good, but her hair is flat and her clothes are stupid.
Now, if it seems like I've been a little hard on the hosts of this show, you haven't seen the show enough. These people are just mean and it's time someone fought back. I'm here to stand up for all of us who like our comfy, if sometimes shabby, clothes.
Some guests, I will say, really do seem to go through a positive life-changing affirmation. Clothes can make a difference in how we feel about ourselves. And I do enjoy the way the show teaches viewers how to look at clothes differently and challenge us to change and enhance our look from time to time. But I think another cable show, "How To Look Good Naked," sends a better message. That show is about appreciating yourself the way you are, which is a pretty important thing.
Which reminds me of some diet advice I read a long time ago and which I think holds some truth: "You should look at yourself in the mirror naked at least once a week. If you can't stand to do it, what makes you think anyone else can."
Wow, that's good advice to keep in mind.
And, if you're ever feeling a bit like a slouch, don't worry, just look around a little more. There are walking, talking victims - I mean candidates - for "What Not To Wear" everywhere.