Monday, March 12, 2018

A Very Good Day

A Perfect Size 12
A Perfect Size 12
My favorite girdle has seen better days. It is old and showing its age, so I shopped around and found its clone on the JCPenney website. After recently returning girdles and bras to Amazon because of sizing issues, I am not anxious to order online again. So I measured old reliable with a tape measure and took my figures to JCPenney in West Farms Mall after my lunch with Diana on Friday.

Entering the store, I found a vast unmentionables department, but searched high and low for the girdle without success. Revisiting the website when I returned home, I noticed that the girdle was available online only, a small, but critical detail I missed going in.

C'est la vie! So I started perusing the dress racks.

I found a beautiful green blazer on the clearance rack. Tried it on and it fit perfectly, but the sleeves were too short (or my arms are too long). Either way, I hung the blazer back on the rack. A 50-something woman noticed me trying on the jacket and made a sympathetic sad face when she saw the sleeve/arm-length problem.

She struck up a conversation with me as I checked out a beautiful to-die-for black and white dress, mentioning that she has so many black dresses, but she can't resist buying another. I said I am also a black dress girl. She commented that the dress I was wearing was also beautiful and I thanked her for the compliment.

The dress I was checking out was not available in my size, but considering that my last dress purchases (all size 14s) were a few months ago and that I was still losing weight, I thought that maybe size 12 would fit. So I took a size 12 to the dressing room.

I thought to myself that I was dreaming, that it would not fit and that I was wasting my time and I almost hung the dress on the discard rack when I found all the dressing rooms were occupied. Just as I considered abandoning it, a woman exited a dressing room and I took it over.

When I slipped on the dress and zipped it up, it fit perfectly (see photo). I was so happy! It looked great on me and even better, I have achieved something I never thought possible: I was now "a perfect size 12."

I took the dress to the cashier and found a half dozen people in line. While waiting patiently for my turn, a 30-something woman behind me said, "Hi" and held up the dress she was purchasing.

"Purple, right?" she asked.

"Yes, that is a very purple dress," I replied.

She was very excited about her find, told me how she was planned to accessorize it and asked me what I thought about her accessorizing plans. She complimented me on the dress I was buying as well as the dress I was wearing and we had a 10-minute conversation about fashion that ended when it was my turn to pay for my purchase.

The cashier, a 30-something woman, also complimented the dress I was buying. She asked if I was going to use my JCPenney credit card and I said, "Yes." However, I had not used the card in ages and the store had cancelled it.

She said if I applied for a new credit card, I could get a 20% discount on all my purchases that day. How could I refuse? So I began entering pertinent information into the mini-terminal next to the cash register. When there terminal asked for my annual income, I remarked that I had just retired and was not sure what my annual income would be.

She said, "You're too young to be retired."

I retorted, "My birthday was yesterday and I just turned 67."

She said I looked much younger than 67 and added that whatever I was doing, keep it up.

I thanked her for the compliment, finished applying for the credit card, paid for the dress, exited the mall and drove home.

I would say that I had a very good day out. I have had brief conversations with cisgender women in the past, but never had extended conversations like I did on Friday... not to mention I had three extended conversations on Friday. During each conversation, there was never that aha moment when the person you are conversing with suspects something is up. I am sure the cashier realized I was not cisgender female when I handed her my photo id to apply for the credit card, but she never said anything about it.

And so it goes.

Source: Madeleine
Wearing Madeleine (Source: Madeleine)

Janek Traczyk
Janek Traczyk femulates Anna Wyszkoni on Polish television's Twoja Twarz Brzmi Znajomo.


  1. you do indeed look much younger than 67...happy belated!!

  2. At the last count I had 12 black dresses, and I know I will still buy more.

    I have found that women are much more likely to strike up a conversation in these situations than men. I find I now have conversations at the supermarket queue, clothes shopping, bus stops, and anywhere that women congregate.

    1. For obvious reasons, I am a little gun-shy when it comes to striking up a conversation, but if someone strikes up a conversation with me, I become a little chatterbox!

    2. I find the same thing as Paula. I would much rather interact with women as a woman -- or at least as Claire. It's funny, but women who know me both ways seem to prefer my femme self. Maybe it's because I'm more me when dressed?

  3. Julie M ShawMarch 12, 2018

    Double congratulations - your birthday AND the Size 12!

  4. That dress is so flattering and cute. Like you I am always pleased when it turns out I can wear a smaller size. Happy Birthday

    1. Thank you, Connie. My shoe size has shrunk, too!

  5. I love the scent of fresh, new Lycra-Spandex.
    My first girdle experience was when I 'borrowed' my moms (circa 1967). The experience was exhilarating! I loved the taughtness and the smooth sensation. Most notably was this garment had smooth, satin back panel, and I dont seem to find such girdles on the market. Anybody know where the legendary 'satin back panel girdle' went?
    Velma Dinkley

  6. Wow you always look so fashionable but that dress is really special. What a great choice