January 25, 2024 I volunteered for The Cleveland Museum of Art’s annual Member Appreciation event, a ’70’s Ball! I had been going through a tremendous amount of frustration as it relates to all the things I do to make a living, so I made it a big me day. I also started early with the cocktails and that continued all day.
Without boring anyone to tears and asking for a single ounce of sympathy (I reminded myself of that as I touched base with my running friend Jim as he continues with his chemotherapy) the three principal companies I work for are all staffed and/or run by morons. And my truck is officially dead and my “business partner” (not legally, but practically, whom I have known since grade school) cannot grasp the simple concepts of running a business.
So the whiskey flowed, I go dressed and hit the road. Yes, this is what I look like in a shitty mood, but dressed….happy.
First stop, Walmart to pick up a few necessary items for the home. Second stop, the bank to pay a credit card bill. I then dropped off a basket of items at the clothing exchange. Next up I set up camp at a library to get e-mails cleaned up for work. Now it was time for some retail therapy! I tell you about these mundane tasks to demonstrate to those learning out there that one can indeed go about their day dressed as one wishes.
A Soft Surroundings store is liquidating, so I picked up a gorgeous coral maxi sweater dress for about $12, originally over $80. Then I did something I had really been wanting to do, some immersive lingerie shopping. I went to Soma and really shopped. I am now trying to wear a bra as often as possible without it being obvious in public. This is for the same reason women wear one, I need one. Soma was having a clearance event, I tried on quite a few bras and ended up, with the help of the sales associate (“That is so cute on you!”), purchased two and then took advantage of the panties on sale while chatting with another SA about how I prefer my bra and panties to match. We talked about how it just made us feel pretty even though no one but us sees it.
Then I hit a local Happy Hour, had a few glasses of wine and something to eat (my first food of the day). I was there prior to our Sherry Christmas celebration and was fondly greeted by the waitress that took care of me and my “girlfriend” that day.
I stopped and picked up the money offered for my clothing and then reported to the art museum for “work”. When I asked my “boss” (and friend) what she needed me to do, see said I was just there for fluff. Code: this is a member-only event, go have fun and here are three free drink coupons. So to earn my keep, I positioned myself at the main entrance and greeted almost every single patron, laughed and joked with so many of them, most in ’70’s attire. My running joke was that no one was allowed to enter unless they had used a rotary phone and had to get up off the couch to change the channel on their TV. That prompted may warm memories of the national anthem at the end of the TV day and the test pattern, long, twisted phone cords at home and many other things we took for granted back then.
It was time to start cashing in my freebees and hanging around the dance floor where I made many new friends. The highlight of my evening was watching and chatting with a 94 year-old gentleman (he was very close to my current age in the 70’s!), who would periodically get up and dance and then rest in his wheelchair. Many of the other ladies there danced with him. So freaking awesome!
I closed the event and attended the after party briefly before calling it a night. The shit continued the next day, but for one day, I was in an oasis of joy. Fluff, indeed!