My friend Barbara Ensor came up with this little meditation on normal, ironic normal, and as if normal clothing…

On my annual trip to visit Georgia’s classroom I know the rules I must wear something normal, not ironic normal, not as if normal, …you get the idea. She teaches in a school in East New York Brooklyn in a neighborhood where the rate of incarceration (among men anyway) is higher than the rate of high school graduation. Every year it astounds me how crazy hard this is. I start out brave and enthusiastic. Often purchases are required. As I get ready,  the very normality of the outfit begins to yell then, shout then scream for some addition.  Only with supreme will power do I get out of the house without black ankle socks or yellow pointed shoes or necklace of plastic gumballs. (. Oddly each year when I succeed it gives me a rush of energy—this ability to present myself as normal. Briefly I feel sure this is the new me, but by 8 AM the next morning it has passed.) Now that the season has turned I am yet again forced against my will to wear an orange hat that places a square button in the middle of my forehead. It culminates in a  point a couple of inches higher in a vertical direction than is reasonable. This despite the upsetting amount of attention it gets me from small children and dogs which I worry about as I leave the building. Jill Thankyou for capturing the insanity of being compelled to wear insanely seductive clothing in days gone by and then being upset, confused, ruffled at the extent of attention from the opposite sex. You really nailed it with the tray.