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My closet screams at me every day.

“Who are you kidding? You know perfectly well you can’t wear that. It makes you look fat. Correction, it doesn’t make you look fat. You are fat. But that outfit makes sure that the rest of the world notices how fat you are.”

Or-

“Give me a break. You only bought that sweater because you couldn’t resist a bargain. Twenty-five dollars for a hundred dollar sweater. But the pattern, horizontal, accentuates the roll around your waist. That’s right; stuff it in the back of the closet. Lie to yourself that you’ll be thinner next winter. Fat chance!!”

Or-

“Well, not bad. Sensible. Not flashy or trendy. Fits well. Even a bit forgiving; the jacket hides a lot. If you’re okay with the matronly look, go for it. Or stash it with the sweater in the back of the closet for next winter when you’ll surely be svelte enough to doff the jacket and shorten the skirt. What a joke!!!”

“I hate you closet,” I scream, slamming the closet’s four panel folding doors so hard I knock them off their track. A few screws fly across the room.

“What do you keep doing to these doors?” Andy, the local handy man, asks as he struggles to get them back in place, roughly pushing paper and wood chips into the destroyed rivet holes, and then twisting in new screws.

I give him a bag containing the “fat dress” and the sweater.

“Maybe your wife can use these,” I say. “They are brand new, but too big for me.”

I have no idea if his wife is a size 4 or a 14, or if he even has a wife, but I offer the parcel and he accepts.

When he leaves, I challenge the belligerent closet, determined that it shall not defeat me.

I pull out all my pants. They range in size from 4 to 10. The smaller ones, too tight; the bigger ones, offensive to me by their very presence. Several pairs of black leggings, all slightly bulged at the knee, a sign of how frequently I reach for these ultra-comfortable garments, are immediately placed back in the closet. Next come dress slacks, a dozen black ones; two, gray; one, brown. Almost all are in dry cleaner bags, a clear indication that they have not been worn once this season. One special pair, a white, light-weight wool that I bought to wear during the holiday season needs shortening. Putting off getting it to the tailor has left it hanging unworn for two years. And the sweater that would have gone so perfectly with it is in the bag I gave to the handy man.

Tops are next. Enough to open a shop of my own. Long sleeved, cotton, crew necked tee shirts in black, white, red, blue and yellow. Sweater sets that were very “in” a couple of years ago but just don’t look right with the leggings I wear almost every day. Pretty sequined or embroidered dressy blouses, store tags still attached, are thrown on my bed to await their fate. Minutes later, I put most back. Just never know when I might need an attractive top for a theater night or a dinner out.

Shoes . What can I say? I love shoes. I can’t throw away the high heeled shoes I wore with tight short skirts when I was still working. Or the cute, backless, open toed sandals that once showed off small pedicured feet with neon colored toenails.

When did wearing pretty shoes become worse than a medieval torture?

I tenderly touch each pair, shed a tear over them and put them back in the closet. I have a wedding to attend this year. The brushed suede heels with the three inch silver stiletto heels will be worn to the gala even if I’ll be unable to walk for the next week.

Within an hour I have dealt with my closet.

I have a small bag of things for the handy man’s wife.

Pretty much everything else is back where it was.

As I close the door I say loudly, “Don’t start with me, Closet. If you do, I’ll sic Andy on you. And believe me, he won’t be at all gentle next time.”

My Closet was last modified: by

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