THE BLOG

Work At Home Wardrobes: How Bad Can They Get?

Jan 05, 2012 | Updated Mar 06, 2012

It's funny how folks who work at home (writers, painters, composers, phone-sex workers, though not those who use Skype visuals) will so often use working in my pajamas! as their number one perk.

But is it really true?

Is it still true, when hearing the UPS truck coming down the road, you realize that the day has come when you can't open the door to your beloved UPS man? This is a tragedy. You work at home. UPS is your lifeline.

I look down at my old pink fleece pants that are too short and rise way above my ankles, topped by a too-small purple tee shirt that my daughter left at home (but that I wear for the same reason I wear anything these days: it's comfortable.) I can't be seen. I can't get my package.

Around my neck is a pink scarf I grabbed because it's ten degrees outside (points for the matchy-match!!) that does not, I repeat, does not belong to any part of this outfit. Although the faux-tie-dye look does have a certain insouciance that could surely attract someone. Somewhere. Perhaps in the prison for the criminally insane, which is not that far from my house.

I peer in the mirror at my Junior-Soprano-style reading glasses. They are not hip. They are not youthful-looking. They are not anything except a window to the lack of makeup that I am once again not wearing.

Walking down memory lane, I envision my other favorite outfits. Have I let my husband see me in those Scottie Dog pajamas? The ones I like to wear with my no-skid socks? Am I playing The Ghost of Wife Future? Showing him just how lovely I will look in the nursing home? Ensuring that come that day, I will neither slip on the linoleum nor want for a lack of pets?

Have I forgotten that old Jack Jones song? (Hey little girl, fix your hair, fix your makeup. . .for wives should always be lovers too ... )

I am not a lover. I am a bag lady.

I realize that I cannot even open the door if there is a fire. How could I allow the neighbors, the firemen, or the EMT workers see me wearing Scottie dogs at 3:30 in the afternoon?

Perhaps I could open the door if I were wearing my oldest friends in the world: the fire red Gap sweatpants and the five sizes too large Gap sweatshirt. Circa 1990.

I appreciate how in the memory my socks are decorated with pictures of toast. Always an attractant.

Then I note the bleach stains up and down the arm of my remembered favorite sweatshirt. At least I clean the house.

My outfits are becoming worrisome. My shower and clothing-change pushes later and later, until I fear I've lost sight of that that fine line between at-home casual and no-boundaries.

Remembering an almost forgotten Skype book club date, I run to put on make-up and style my hair.

But below Skype-view level, I am wearing those all important no-skid socks. God forbid I slide under my desk.