The Zombie Apocalypse is coming. Or aliens from space. Or major financial collapse followed by catastrophic war. Or an asteriod is hurtling millions of miles per hour towards our little bluish ball. Either way, our lovely little home is doomed and life as we know it will come to a rather grey, grumpy and frumpy end. You see, once all this awful happens, people won’t dress in any way pleasing to the eyes. We will suddenly all choose to dress in drab browns, greys and black. Women will no longer desire to dress pretty. We are doomed to dress like men in the same styles and colors a la Chairman Mao’s revolutionary China. In our new dystopian world there will be no pretty dresses. Unless you’re a woman for sex hire or privilaged and ridiculously useless and frivolous. Everybody knows that serious and useful women “don’t care about such things”. I also have a lake front house in the middle of the Kalahari I’d like to sell you.
I have no desire to live in anybody’s post apocalyptic world, especially if there are no pretty dresses. We’ve already established that I am frivolous and damn proud of it. If “serious” is my reward for so-called growing up then you can keep your grown up. I’ll have nothing to do with it, thankyouverymuch. The “no pretty dresses” idea is basically a continuation of the current mindset anyway. “Serious”, or as the current fad happens to call them “real”, women we’re told have any number of amazing attributes that make them completely capable of running the entire world with both hands tied behind their backs, raising brilliant children that contribute great things to the world (because she is the penultimate mom), is belligerently soft and vulerable and unquestionably drop dead sexy (presumably because she just dropped dead from dealing with her impossible load). Nowhere in these amazing attributes, I’ve noticed, is this mythical creature playful or joyful or appreciative of her appearance (unless it’s because she’s “owning her power” and “expressing her fullness”). This poor miserable creature who can not only bring home the bacon and fry it up in a pan can also hunt down, kill and dress the (wild, rank) pig, build the house, the stove, the plumbing, the cooking utensils AND the pan. She doesn’t require the help of any man, only her community of Sisters need bother offering help. But the man isn’t forgotten. No, no, no he’s the whole POINT of her belligerent vulnerability and forceful softness: “I’m all pretty now, dammit! You’d better appreciate all the trouble I went to for this! Now, get on your back so I can ride you like a wild woman and enjoy myself!” ::scowling and tapping her foot impatiently::
Well, I have to say I don’t know any women like this. (At least not all the time, though this may certainly be a very fun way to play. “Yes, Mistress. Your will is my bidding!” ::bows low in abject worshipfulness then hurriedly assumes the requested position::) I don’t think any of the women I know are acquainted with anyone like this, either. And every one of us likes to be pretty. We like pretty clothes. We like to be noticed – gay or straight – by the people who mean the most to us. We like pretty dresses (or pants; some of us don’t much care for dresses). We don’t want to hear how pretty is frivolous or only for the professionally pretty. We don’t want to hear how we’re “pretty for a (fill in the blank)”. We are pretty. We are beautiful. Period. End of story. And sometimes even the most practical of us likes to wear pretty dresses.