As the mother of two boys, I resigned myself long ago to the fact that when it comes to clothing, my choices to outfit them would be limited to dinosaurs, animals, super heroes, planes, construction equipment, stripes, and sports. As they have gotten older, the choices narrowed even further to plain, minimal stripes, and (the very expensive) sports team/logo wear.
My boys hate the feel of jeans, so when we find a pair of sweatpants/shorts that fit and are deemed cool enough to be seen it, we buy them in every color they come in. Which brings us back to limits once again, as the color choices they have started gravitating to in their teen years are shades of grey, navy, and black. Hooray for the neutrals, because they will go with any of the outrageously expensive logo wear/sports team tops they pick up from the floor and sniff before shrugging their shoulders and putting on the offensive smelling item anyway.
Recently, we relented and went shopping for Fall/Winter clothes for our oldest and a few items to fill in the gaps of the hand-me-downs for our youngest. Because who doesn’t want to spend a Saturday evening in crowded rural mall, shopping with two teenage boys who could care less about clothing?
Our first stop was Old Navy. My husband and I spent a lot of time trying to decipher what “I dunno”, “whatever” and “sure” really meant as we held up options for our 14 year old to decide on. It got even tougher to tell what he thought as he moved into the non-verbal responses of “major eyeroll”, “shrug”, and “heavy sigh while snapping one’s head back”.
Which pretty much made me do this:
After finding a few sweatpants styles and some long sleeve shirts that fit – and buying them in the three neutral colors available – we headed to H&M. I’d heard the clothing was affordably priced. What I hadn’t heard about was how much I wouldn’t be hearing after being in a store that blasts hipster emo tunes. #OldPeopleProblems
The clothing options were minimal at best and we quickly determined that our decidedly non-emo sons would not find anything of interest. On our way out, I spotted this:
I immediately snapped a picture and commented, “If you boys want something like this, I’ll take you to my parent’s house and you can pick one from granddad’s closet. For free.”
Next it was on to American Eagle, where I spotted this and told my husband “if you become a stripper and wear these sparkly blue underwear, perhaps we can afford all these clothes we have to buy the kids.”
The salesgirl smirked and asked if she could help me find them in my husband’s size. My husband then rolled his eyes, shrugged, and let out a heavy sigh while snapping his head back as he headed toward the door.
By the time we got to the fourth store, my sons’ and husband’s enthusiasm for the whole shopping excursion had really waned (as if it going lower than from where it started could even be a possibility). Their diminished enthusiasm was almost inversely proportional to their growing hunger for dinner. My oldest spent a solid three minutes in the store, where he picked out 3 shirts (same style, different colors) and quickly made a beeline for the exit to discuss restaurant options with his dad and younger brother.
Our shopping trip had taken less than an hour and a half. I think we spent more time on dinner at the restaurant when you count driving to it, waiting for a seat, ordering, eating, paying the check, and driving home.
Fast forward to last night and just three weeks after buying the new clothes. My oldest walked through the family room and I yelled “Stop!”.
“Are those a pair of your new sweatpants?”, I inquired.
“Yes,” was his response.
My close to 6′ tall, size 13 shoe-wearing oldest stood while I took a photo. The new sweatpants are already too short.
He’ll just have to hope he doesn’t grow any taller because I can’t update his wardrobe with new navy/grey/black sweatpants every three weeks.
Boys’ fashion is certainly not for the weak of heart. Or the weak of wallet.