Fall weather leads to wardrobe worries

September 13, 2020

The streets are finally on their way to becoming empty, in a manner of speaking. The parking meters in Rehoboth will soon be put to bed after a long season of verbal abuse. 

Rest assured, it takes time to assimilate back to our normal routine. For too long, we locals have been taken with the Stockholm syndrome, whereby we’ve identified with our captors and gone out and tinted our car windows black, put extra ramming-speed equipment in our vehicles and worn the tightest, shortest shorts off the rack, whereby the actual cloth disappears somewhere inside our bodies, only to be found years later during a routine colonoscopy.

Some of us have lost our hearing over the summer. For some reason, I assume every conversation involves death. If you say someone lied, my response is, “He died?”  So, you can see, I have a lot of extended side effects from wearing a mask; usually I just nod my head. OK, it’s probably from having the tubes in my ears blown out by other drivers honking at me.

But this lull in traffic now gives me an opportunity to turn my attention to more important matters, like my fall wardrobe. I know what you are thinking ... what wardrobe? Believe it or not, at some point you may have to travel outside the state of Delaware. It might be for a visit or an event, or something more pressing, like a bail bond hearing. If you are still wearing flip-flops and white pants, it would seem so bizarre to people in the rest of the country, the federal government will require a Department of Homeland Security full-body scan.

There are parts of this country where people don’t wear open-toed shoes year-round. So it requires some thinking on your part to gear up for the fall season. I know it’s difficult, since your brain is only functioning at the level of a small piece of spinach, just from all the near-misses on the highway this summer.

Of course, there are some advantages to wandering around in tight black spandex leggings. Usually, you can go to the head of any line outside your ZIP code; people waiting assume by your outfit that you’ve just given up on life and probably don’t have too many days ahead of you.

I’ve had this happen a lot at airports. Unfortunately, I seemed to be always directed to the front of the check-in for a place like Uganda and politely complimented on my native attire.

Now, I’ve done some research on what to expect this year. It’s a lame effort on my part to appear tasteful, but this is all I’ve got. 

The new fall colors are gray, gray and gray, including matching masks. Trust me, no one looks good in this color except for a bunch of nocturnal people who dig up graves. 

You may shrug your shoulders now and not consider fall fashion high on your list of priorities. However, your adult children will be watching, and one stain, one loose button, one of last year’s colors, one repeat outfit, and you are looking at a family conference on living in a group home where you will hear, “B-10, I-54…” over and over again.

Believe me, I’ve yet to live down the suit I wore to one of my children’s college graduations. OK, plaid suits went out in the ‘70s, but considering the torn, dust-covered T-shirts they have been wearing, I don’t get the critiques, let alone the laughter. I would suggest you get yourself a travel wardrobe. Black is always safe, but not too much; you don’t want to be mistaken for a Hefty bag or one of the Kardashians.

So, you may want to start working on that fall wardrobe today. Or since it’s an election year, just blame your appearance on the nearest politician.


  • Nancy Katz has a degree in creative writing and is the author of the book, "Notes from the Beach." She has written the column Around Town for the Cape Gazette for twenty years. Her style is satirical and deals with all aspects of living in a resort area on Delmarva.

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