Monday, April 11, 2005

Tar Heels, sticky fingers

My wife Kara and I recently took a road trip down to Chapel Hill, North Carolina, to visit her youngest sister Sarah at the University of Guys Who Wear Pink Shirts with the Collars Turned Up. Perhaps I just haven’t been paying attention, but I’m pretty sure I have never witnessed this sort of fashion behavior north of the Mason-Dixon Line. As we drove through campus for the first time, I felt like we were on a Six Flags safari.

“Ooh, look how pink those shirts are,” Kara said. “Wow, those are males, too. They must be trying to lure females with their bright plumage and crested collars.”

“Roll up your window! I think you’re attracting them,” I said.

“Look how close that one is. Oh, do we have any iPods we can feed it?” she asked.

“He’s getting too close -- he’s gonna scratch the paint!” I shrieked (a manly shriek, of course), and we zoomed off to find Sarah’s dorm.

When we were hanging out with Sarah later, I realized how quickly any coolness I might have gained in college has permanently faded away. Thursday is a weekend night for her. Friday isn’t even a weekend night for me anymore. I’m too tired after work to do anything but reminisce about how cool I used to be, then clip my toenails onto the carpet and go to bed at ten o’clock.

Sarah briefly left me and Kara alone in her dorm room, which was a grave tactical error. Kara went straight to her closet. There was a shelf in there devoted entirely to purses, some of which had the letters “DB” written all over them, which I can only assume stands for “Don’t give me any money, or I’ll spend it all on purses. But aren’t they cute?”

Kara and Sarah have a little unspoken agreement that can best be described as an involuntary clothing exchange. Whenever they are in the same place, they discreetly rummage through each others’ clothes, and just take whatever isn’t ripped, stained, or reeking of Eau de Ferret (our ferret likes to sleep in Kara’s sweaters, which is the only reason they still belong to her).

Luckily for Sarah, she came back into the room before Kara had a chance to try anything on. I suggested that we head down to the bookstore so that I could buy a sweatshirt.

“I already have one,” Kara said.

“Is it white with a hood and powder blue writing on the front?” Sarah asked.

“Maybe,” Kara replied.

“I thought I lost that one. You took it!” Sarah said, making a motion to kick Kara.

“Hey, those are my shoes!” Kara replied.

And so it goes. I’m glad my older sister Amy is much smaller than me. I can barely keep myself clothed as it is. If it weren’t for Christmas and my birthday, I’d still be wearing my Hypercolor t-shirts from seventh grade. I don’t think I could handle somebody stealing my clothes, and Amy’s tank tops wouldn’t be a flattering look for me, anyway.

Regardless, Chapel Hill is a nice town. I wasn’t there long enough to tell if it’s my-McDonalds-has-a-wooden-sign nice, but if it’s not, it’s a contender for sure. If you’re ever in the neighborhood, say hi to Sarah for me. But keep an eye on your shoes.


  1. Ah, it's great to be back. I've missed so much. And I can attest to the clothes swap myself. I brought with me a 30 pound suitcase filled with cllothes and shoes, and still managed to whine my way through vacation that I had nothing to wear, therefore had to shop and borrow clothes from my friends. Of course, since they looked better on me than on them, they aren't getting anything back.

  2. I will never, ever, EVER, be able to understand how the other half operate. It's one of those things us men were never meant to know. Why they swap clothes, why they go to the bathroom together in bars, why they hate having to put down the toilet seat, all part of Life's Great Unsolved Mysteries. Even gay men, I hear, simply mimic the behaviour without fully understanding it. The answer is probably found in that extra x chromasome.

  3. Hey Homepersons,

    I just added a links section to the right-hand side of the page. I was hesitant to do that, 'cause people could come here from the paper and get offended at a site to which I link.

    I hereby claim no responsibility for anything on anybody else's page, unless there's an especially good joke, and then I'd like to claim full credit for it. You know, just 'cause.

    Anyway, if you click on a link I've added and get offended at what you find, I hope you'll email me at so I can take care of it (respects to JL).

    And please let me know if I've left anyone out -- I just linked to pages that already link to this one. I'm all awkward at making the first reciprocal-linking move. I get all nervous and sometimes my href pops out too soon.

  4. Good thing you acknowledged me buddy, or you;d be emailing me at!!! lol

  5. Nice posts! I enjoy your writing style

  6. Thanks! This is officially the first time the word "style" has been applied to anything I've ever done.