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The culprit.


Once the temperature officially shuts the door on summer, when I trade bare legs for black stockings (which warrants slipping into my favorite, thigh-gripping black slip), I’ve more than once forgotten to put my skirt on (which is usually black). It seems the more black I have to put on, the more often I forget to put it all on before I walk out the door. And often, everything I’m wearing from the waist down is black.

This is the hanger-version, shaped into what I was wearing as I made my way out my door on my way to work the other day:


The culprit with a top.

I looked in the mirror before I left — all good. I even wrapped up the whole outfit with a funky black belt. But looks in the mirror can be deceiving. I saw my slip as a skirt.

This has happened before. But I’ve always caught myself before I made it past the front door. Always. Until now. I had even adopted a back-up plan to make sure I’m dressed when I leave the house. I do a quick, full-body, mental scan from top to bottom, every day, as I’m walking to the train or to my car in the driveway: Earrings? Yes. Top? Yes. Shoes? (I’m a barefoot girl — I drive without them and have inadvertently started driving away without them, and have had to go back to get them. But usually–yes.) Bottom? Damn!

This time I got all the way to the car, thinking I was dressed. It wasn’t until I sat down behind the wheel did I notice that my “skirt” was hiking its way up to inappropriate. Because it wasn’t my skirt. My skirt was still in the closet.


Slipped out the door without this.

“Write everything down!” I’m told by friends and family. I try. When I do write things down, it’s usually on the fly, so more often than not, I can’t find where I wrote anything down.

“Put everything in your phone!” I’ve been reprimanded. I already sleep with my phone, that’s as far as I’ll go.

I will hold out as long as I can, and will leave it up to my aging hippocampus to (at least try!) to never forget — like it used to. I fear if I don’t, I will lose more than my skirt.

Of course, because I refuse to write everything down, or because I forget where I wrote it down, I forget to do lots of things (pay bills, make an important phone call, put on my skirt). So I did write this down, to remind me to embrace my black-outs: “Forgetfulness is a lapse in memory. It’s not a loss. It’s normal.”

Followed by the maxim that I hurl at all my over-50 mishaps: “What’s the worst that can happen!”

My 81-year-old mom told me recently that as she was getting dressed for a doctor’s appointment, she checked three times before she left the house to make sure her “slacks were on the right way,” because that is not a given with her. Once in the exam room, as she was getting undressed, she saw immediately that her slacks were on the wrong way. The back was in the front. Surely, a snippet of what lies ahead for me.

But I figure as long as I still, eventually, remember what I forgot — like my skirt — I’m still solvent. Normal. In the black.