Thursday, February 21, 2013

On the Reactions of Others: Comparisons Make Me Giggle

When you dress strangely, people are going to comment. It's almost inevitable. I know we don't want to think of it that way, but it's true. People feel the need to comment on our clothing. Sometimes, it's an irritating or even frightening experience.

But sometimes, it's altogether positive.

I love it when people compare my clothing to something. They always give me the most darling lists of comparisons without realizing that I treasure each and every simile:

"You look like Mary Poppins."
"You look like Alice in Wonderland."
"You look like a cross between a 1950s housewife and Johnny Depp's girlfriend from Sweeney Todd."
"I love the... school teacher thing you've got going on."
"You look like a black widow."
"You look like a vampire, Moby Dick, Victorian mashup."
"You look like an American Girl doll."
"It's like what would happen if Disney did a movie about vikings."
"You look like a princess."
"You look like one of the adorable Hobbit girls."
"You look like you just stepped out of the 1940s and you're waiting for a train."

Each of these statements was meant as a compliment, and each one made me very, very happy.

Open Heart by Nathan Sawaya
That is, of course, just a selection of things I've heard. I've heard them from family members, from friends, from coworkers, from ladies working in shops, from the people at my parents' church, from strangers on the street while I waited for concerts.

I want to encourage anybody who wears strange things to treasure the silly comparisons and positive things you hear. Yes, sometimes you just want to be left alone to go through the Target clearance racks in peace, but the approval people give is a beautiful and sometimes rare thing. Each compliment is a small piece that, together with other small pieces of positivity, comes together to make a whole lot of love.


  1. I've gotten both Mary Poppins and Alice in Wonderland before.

  2. I've gotten Mary Poppins before and quite a lot of little old ladies telling me I look lovely and more girls should dress like me. Usually only when I'm slightly less obviously gawth.