But next weekend I'm going to the Midwest Morris Ale in Dodgeville Wisconsin, where I'll be tenting. The walk from the tent to the shower house is long and muddy and, the last time the Ale was held at this site, very cold and wet. Each morning I'd get dressed down to my shoes and socks before trudging o'er fields forests rocks hills and brambles to the shower house. After my (bitter cold no pressure) shower I'd get back into the dirty clothes for the hike back. What a pain.
This year? A robe and sandals, that's the solution.
On my lunchtime errand just now (gift box of chocolates from Regina's Candies in West Saint Paul for a 50th birthday gathering tonight for Megan, an old friend from the band) I passed the Secret Cave of the Style-Free -- aka Burlington Coat Factory -- and figured this was a reasonable locale for a bathrobe hunt. Once there, I bushwhacked my way through stacks of ill-cut cheap polyester shirts and racks of shapeless puffy coats and, voilà, there I found quite the assortment of robes, just the other side of the shiny sleep pants imprinted with the Playboy Bunny symbol.
Alas, I found no robes imprinted with those Playboy icons; such a robe would have been just perfect for the Ale (I would have given it to springiswrath at the end of the weekend). As to what I did find, well, I would try a robe on and check myself out in the mirror and discover that each robe brought it's own set of strong evocations. I tell you, those robes were haunted.
First I tried a thick white robe made of Turkish toweling. After I put that one on I found myself setting out in search of a Moroccan boy to rub me down with oil in preparation for my massage. This is not what I was hoping for.
I found the same robe in a dark, rich green, but despite the woodland reference of the color it was decidedly not a robe for the outdoors. I wanted to purchase a pair of sunglasses and sip cocktails by the pool in that robe.
The next robe I tried seemed too conservative for strong association: a cotton and ramie robe in silver-grey with narrow light stripes. I don't know, maybe it was the contrasting collar, but when I looked in the mirror I couldn't stop myself from saying "Liza, where the devil are my slippers!" Again, not what I was looking for on a camping trip.
I wound up buying the plainest, most association-free robe in the store: A white textured woven cotton robe that cost only about $12. From some angles wearing it makes me want to bow to my honorable host, or perhaps to engage in a display of martial arts. From other angles wearing it makes me want to draw your blood, or to return to the laboratory to complete my experiments. But it will have to do.