Do These Pants Look Good On Me?

Do These Pants Look Good On Me?

I come in from a dog walk, my husband greets me, strikes a pose and asks the title question. He is wearing a pair of brand new jeans. He wants a simple and enthusiastic yes! Instead he gets an incredulous look and a metric ton of snark.

Are you kidding me with this!?

He hasn’t bought new jeans since the pandemic. It’s been months and months since house arrest. We do go out now. I’ve had to accept the fact that relaxer pants, as he calls them, are the only option. I have said quite a few times, go get yourself some new Levis. Lord have mercy does he look good in new Levis. How does he have these Levis loooking trousers and not know it? Have these fantastic pants been in his drawer unnoticed for a year and a half? Are you telling me he could have worn these jeans to our anniversary dinner? I am paralyzed by bafflement.

After my attempt to physically convey total aghast-ness, I switch gears and yell, You look freaking amazing! Those are the best pants I’ve seen on you in ages!

So, they look ok?

I glare at him.

Just say yes.

Yes. Yes! If by ok, you mean great than yes! Where have these been?

You think the cut is okay?

What are you talking about!?

Is this style alright?

You have only worn one style of jeans the entire time I have known you and this is that style. These jeans are perfect on you.

They don’t look weird anywhere?

Where?! Where do they look weird? Point to the problem.

He just shrugs.

They could not look one bit better. Please do not take them off.

So, you like them?

I am screaming what he wants to hear in an aggrieved tone. Why isn’t he be placated?

NEVER BE WITHOUT THESE EXCEPTIONALLY FLATTERING JEANS!

He sips his coffee then exits the kitchen.

I often ask him if my hair looks okay, my long straight hair which hasn’t been out of a braid or ponytail since I was eight years old. Not much to comment on. But he wants you to know he always says it looks nice and then says nothing else. What a lovely man. Doesn’t he look good in his new pants.

Stop What You’re Doing and Smell This!

Stop What You’re Doing and Smell This!

My dogs and I are not paying attention to the same things, almost to the point of no overlap. Though we are in the exact same situation, mere inches apart, we are experiencing completely different sensations and prioritizing unrelated stimuli. For example, I will notice a person sitting in their car with the windows rolled down, maybe on the phone, maybe smoking a joint. My first impulse is to put some space between us. Just to be polite. We’re outside, no need to bunch up and crowd each other.

Decaf, my male dog, starts manically sniffing the grass along the length of the car, back and forth, from tail pipe to engine. It’s like he’s able to sniff gold and he can smell the jackpot. I’m not sure I do anything with the level of passion he displays multiple times a day sniffing grass. After twirling in a circle a few times right next to the car door, he settles in for a poop. Seriously! I feel like a jerk. If I was in the car I would definitely be like, Move along lady, why are you lurking directly out my window? Ugh! My dogs are oblivious to other people. Humans do not register. 

When approaching a group, Decaf will zig in front of me and zag in front of them causing everyone an inconvenience. I know this and so I tighten the leash and move us to the side. Even constrained, he strains to be under foot. I would think he too would want to avoid all this kinetic action but no, he struggles mightily to remain in alignment with the scent he is tracking. He is laser focused on smell. I don’t know what people mean to him. Are they like streetlamps are to me? Something in the vicinity that doesn’t need to be regarded? I would think that people would be noteworthy. They are to some dogs.

Just the other day a big dog with a ball in his mouth bounded up to me and my friend and needed to say hello to each of us. We received a good sniff from him and a small whine which seemed to be relieved by petting and acknowledgement. Then he loped off.

I like friendly dogs. I hope, if there are more dogs in my future, they are friendly. That’s because I’m friendly and it would feel more comfortable to me. Neither of my dogs are friendly. Decaf is like a navy seal. He is on a mission. Period. There is nothing else. Feather, the female, is traumatized and everything scares her. She flees from all interactions. But if people are NOT trying to interact, then it’s like they don’t exist, and she also seems oblivious to our proximity to others. She mostly focuses on Decaf. If he demonstrates that a patch of weedy grass deserves a good long smell session, she is going to wait patiently until he is done, you don’t smell in tandem apparently, and then she is going to daintily sniff about a bit. Nothing too excessive. She doesn’t seem to get as worked up about it as he does, but she does do something, and she sure takes her time with it. If it’s inconveniently happening near other people, so what?

I am super attuned to other people. How far away they are, what direction they are walking, whether we will intersect and when. Don’t you hate it when you can tell you and someone walking at a right angle to you will collide if you keep going at the same pace? Who’s going to concede and step aside? But aside from the haughty feeling I should have the right of way, I like people and am fine with crossing paths with them. I am not attuned because I am afraid. It’s just part of what registers and most of that registering comes from sight. A little bit comes from listening.

Decaf is mostly only using his nose. If I could be a dog for ten minutes or an hour or a day I would do it. I am not the most adventurous person but this I would do in a heartbeat. I am dying to know what he smells. But not with my nose and my general aroma ignorance. I want to smell with his nose and more importantly I want to perceive the information he is receiving. I want to know what he knows. I want to feel what he feels. Why is that particular spot of grass so psychedelic? Is his fevered and desperate sniffing, huffing, circling, tracking and trailing over a small patch of grass like getting to sample Albert Hoffman’s original batch of LSD? Is it like reading the last ten pages of a whodunit? Is it like hearing the numbers of a winning lottery ticket? Please share the pleasure with me!

But perhaps we could constrain my shape shifting fantasy to invisible smells only. Both dogs have a perplexing attraction to excrement. Yet another point of division between us as to what merits our attention during the daily walks.

I was reading this to my husband to see if my observations squared with him and he said, you should call this one: I Don’t Give A Shit About You But I Do Give A Shit About Shit. This is why I married him. He makes me laugh. And to be clear, that title would be from the perspective of Decaf, not me. I most certainly do give a shit about you and I hope you are doing well.