Mission Impossible

I have no problem when Kim calls for me to kill a spider in the kitchen or when I’m asked to catch a child who’s escaped from the bathtub and running naked around the house. I’ve also been known to make Macaroni and Cheese (from a box) if Kim’s not around and I can’t track down a frozen pizza. 

But there’s one task that sends a chill up my spine because I know, no matter how hard I try, the results will border on hideous.


Dressing my sons is straightforward. I pick jeans and a shirt of any color because anyone who reads GQ knows that jeans go with anything, although that’s not the best example because GQ models don’t wear shirts. It’s hard to go wrong here as long as you play the wildcard: blue jeans.

But my daughters are an entirely different challenge. And the problem starts when I open their dresser drawers and can’t make heads or tails of anything in there. I’m accustomed to wearing two layers: underwear and public facing clothing (jeans and shirts). But girls wear what seems like four layers of clothing and I don’t understand the first three.

I have a rule that goes like this: If it stretches, it belongs on the head. Like my ski hat or my Fletch-style headband. But that rule fails miserably when I dress my daughters because nearly every piece of clothing stretches. The shirts, the pants and the superstretchythingy that goes on under the pants all stretch. Each item of clothing feels like a big rubberband covered in a layer of ultra-thin fabric and I have no idea if it goes on the arm, leg, waist or head. Would it kill the company to put a symbol of the body part on which it resides right next to the washing instructions?

But I do my best to dress my daughters when called upon although I wonder if Kim asks me to do this only when she’s in need of a good laugh. I consider my job as wardrobe consultant a success if two or less items need to be changed at mom inspection time. And by change I mean swapped out for something that matches or relocated to a different part of the body.

What I need is a company like Benetton to create a unisex clothing line for kids that doesn’t cost an arm and a leg that clearly describes whether the clothing item should be worn….on the arm or the leg.

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