Passionless Fashion

transforming our lives by transforming our wardrobes

Monthly Archives: March 2011

Day 83 – Friday

Ena - Day 83

Ena: Today is Friday.  I’m sure you already knew that, but I wanted to say it anyway.  Today is also the first day that I have worn my new-to-me maxiskirt.  I picked up this skirt while thrift shopping in Palm Springs with my Grandma a few weeks back and I really like it.

A maxiskirt was on my thrift shopping wish list, something I was specifically looking for.  Maybe I’m just naïve, but I was completely shocked by how hard it was to find an acceptable maxiskirt; by that I mean one that does not have palm trees printed all over it or tassels hanging from the waist band.  I finally found this one at the Goodwill in Palm Desert.  I wasn’t completely sold on it and I almost didn’t buy it, but now I am so glad that I did.  I love the fabric (is it silk, satin, cotton, polyester…who knows), it’s soft and light and perfect for Spring and Summer.  Yay.

I am really looking forward to this weekend; it is supposed to be a bit overcast and chilly, perfect weather for some much needed couch time.  I am also looking forward to it because Saturday I am taking my GAB training course.  I will finally be able to begin my career as a Los Angeles Public Library volunteer, I am through the roof.  I can’t wait, I’ll tell you all about it on Monday.  Double yay.

Bina - Day 83

Bina: After yesterday’s pathetic display, I was determined to put on a better show today, if only for my own gratification. For one thing, I set 3 alarms and actually woke up at a proper time today. Secondly, I straightened and brushed my hair. Thirdly, I knew what I wanted to wear. I’m still a big fan of this little $20 dress and these bright turquoise tights. They make me happy just looking at them; they are springtime to me. And the colorful, sparkly bangles (though hard to see in the pics) are from India.

My Pops comes back from India next week. I’ve missed him, even though normally he would still be in Texas anyway. But it feels different when your loved one is on the other side of the globe as opposed to just a couple time zones away, especially when the world feels somewhat apocalyptic. It’s comforting to know he’ll be home with my Mom soon.

As you probably know, India still has a somewhat active caste system. We are Rajputs; Rajput is from the Sanskrit word Raja-putra (son of a king). Considered to descend from the ancient Hindu ruling warrior dynasties of Northern India, the Chauhans were one of the first Rajput clans to rise to prominence. Our reputation precedes us as hot-blooded and short-tempered. In fact, during colonization, the British deemed the Rajputs a “martial race.” They used this term to describe ethnic groups that were thought to be naturally warlike and aggressive in battle and to possess qualities like courage, loyalty, self sufficiency, physical strength, resilience, orderliness, a hard working nature, a fighting tenacity, and military strategy. The British recruited heavily from these “martial races” for service in the colonial army.

As I mentioned some characteristics from my Japanese lineage recently, I thought it only fair to share a glimpse of the other side of my coin. Sometimes I feel like such an anomaly – as if two very, very different cultures clashed and made me. I was born on a cusp; people seem to never be able to figure me out, ethnically or otherwise; astrological readers are befuddled. Sometimes, it seems, my existence just doesn’t make any sense. Maybe lineage and astrology is a bunch of hooey. Or maybe I’m just special – aren’t we all?



Day 82 – Thursday

Ena: Unlike Bina, today I have nothing to blame for my poor attitude and even poorer outfit; it is completely my fault.  I’m not sure if it’s lack of sleep or the full moon or my aching feet, but I was in a wicked mood this morning.  It was bad, the phrase “bee under your bonnet” comes to mind…though I have no idea where that bee came from or how it got under my bonnet.  Needless to say, today’s pictures are a disgrace, a very poor showing indeed.  I vow to try much harder tomorrow.

On a more positive note, yesterday a co-worker who has just returned from 5 months working abroad stopped Bina and me in the hall to tell us that he had noticed a marked difference in, “the way you two dress.”  Mind you, this person left prior to the beginning of this project and has only been back in the office for 2 days.  Our external transformation has been so dramatic that this person who hasn’t seen us in almost half a year noticed it immediately; so, I guess it’s true, we used to look baaaad…but we don’t anymore. 

P.S. More positive news, I don’t really wear bonnets – it’s just a metaphor. 

Bina: Okay, now I am the complete bonehead today!!! Blurg. This morning, my alarm went off at 6:45am. I thought I hit snooze; I thought I only closed my eyes for a second…the next thing I know, I open my eyes and it is 8:57am and I am supposed to be at work by 9. Wait, actually today I was supposed to be at work at 8! Ugh, what a maroon. I can only blame intense malaise, gloomy skies, and my own rampant silliness for this blunder.

Once I awoke, I only mildly panicked, sent an email to the office, cursed the useless cats for not waking me, then started stumbling around trying to get ready. It would have been much simpler if I could’ve just thrown on some sweats and called it a day, but no. Somebody had the brilliant idea to do a fashion photo blog for 100 work days. As I was hastily brushing my teeth, I remembered it was St. Patrick’s Day.  “Okay, fine, I’ll wear something green then,” I thought as I approached my closet, having put no prior thought into today’s ensemble. I ripped this dress from the hanger and threw it on, grabbed some accessories, quickly ran a brush through my hair. And here I am, still somewhat discombobulated. I don’t have any make-up on except for the few strokes of mascara I managed, and my hair doesn’t even look like I brushed it at all. So I present to you my Day 82 look: The Girl Who Overslept That Needs Coffee And A Hairbrush.

Day 81 – Wednesday

Ena - Day 81

Ena: Today is a bit cooler than yesterday and I am dressed a bit more appropriately.  I really wanted to wear this skirt today; I really like this skirt.  This skirt makes me feel great and it is so much fun to wear.  I didn’t want to wear the exact same outfit as the last time I wore it though, and so this is what I came up with; kind of an Alice in Wonderland, 50s school girl, ballroom dancer type of thing.  I’m not sure if it’s completely working, but I did like today’s pictures much better than I thought I would and that is always a good sign.

Since I went with the grey-ish tights, I decided to wear this grey-ish cropped blazer.  I picked up this blazer on my first thrifting trip back in November but this is the first time that I’ve worn it.  I like it a lot, it’s just that it’s really structured and a little difficult to wear.  The shoulders are extremely padded, very serious, and a little intimidating.  But, after today, I am inspired to keep trying; I will figure out the correct way to wear this blazer, I will.

Today is also the first time that I have worn a skirt with tights and flats.  I consider this a huge step toward becoming more comfortable with my legs, and, since summer-weather is rapidly approaching and I cannot hide behind fabric forever, I am hoping that the next step will be wearing a skirt or dress bare-legged, without tights or leggings.  Alright, so I did sort of do that the other day, but that was a long skirt and, believe me, it will be much, much more difficult for me to do with something shorter.  It would be an enormous step though, so I really hope that I have the guts to try it before this project is over.  Cross your fingers, it’s gonna take a lot of courage…and self tanner.

Bina - Day 81

Bina: I wore this dress on Day 1. Oh, the places we’ve been since then! Can you tell these are my new favorite shoes? I’m quite pleased with the comfort-meets-style criteria they satisfy. The scarf was a gift from my best friend, on her wedding day. I love the colors, so pretty, reminds me of the ocean and the beach where the festivities were held.

I have always loved the ocean, the magical and mystical ocean. When I sit on the beach, I always feel as though if I breathe in and out deeply enough, problems drift out to sea. At the same time, I have always been terrified of the ocean – the things that lurk beneath the water you cannot see, the waves that can crush you into the rocks, the tide that can pull you away from the shore. It’s a crazy powerful thing, that ocean, as we have obviously seen recently.

Did you hear the story about Diane Sawyer visiting a group of tsunami survivors sitting amongst rubble in Sendai? (I wish that were the beginning of a joke.) Anyway, one of the men offered the reporter something to eat. In a country where millions have no food or water, she declined. But he insisted. Sawyer later shared the moment on television and described the “incredible kindness, and incredible strength” of the people she’d met. This is who the Japanese are; George Takei recently taught American viewers about the concept of gaman which means to endure with fortitude and dignity, restraint and self-control. (Not to be confused with unagi or “a state of total awareness.” Sorry. I’m tellin’ ya, I can relate anything to Friends.)

There have been days when I cursed my lot in life. I felt like I came from a long line of women who were scorned in some way, a line of family members who struggled with anxiety and addiction. My brother once told me he jokingly went to a psychic who said he was cursed in love; she then told him all he needed to do to break the spell was buy some $100 candles. Any time I’ve had friends do my tarot cards, or read my astrological charts, they say I will have a life filled with pain, but then again whose life isn’t filled with pain?

I mentioned yesterday that my perspective has changed. I no longer see myself as coming from a line of women who were victims of the way they were mistreated. I see that the stock that I come from is the stock of survivors.

Day 80 – Tuesday

Ena - Day 80

Ena: Well, it reached a high of 78 degrees here in Los Angeles today and, being a major bonehead, I opted to dress myself in no less than two different animal skins and nearly head-to-toe black; unbelievable.  Needless to say, I have spent the bulk of my day absolutely sweltering, entirely uncomfortable, and generally perturbed with no one to blame but myself.  Booo!

It’s funny how outfit problems frequently equal attitude problems…at least, they do for me.  I’m not positive, but I’d be willing to bet that I’m not the only one for whom dissatisfaction with my clothing choices quickly translates into  dissatisfaction with my day.  Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying that this is in any way healthy or excusable, but it does speak to the magical powers of fashion; “looking good means feeling good.”  I suppose in this instance it’s more like: “looking good in weather appropriate clothing means feeling comfortable and less like an angry improperly dressed idiot,” but the first one has more of a ring to it, don’t you think?

Bina - Day 80

Bina: From the depths of my closet, I bring you this rarely-worn dress. I have no idea where I even got it, but I can guarantee that it was certainly on sale or clearance, and it used to fit me quite snugly. This morning, when I realized how baggy the waistline was, I reached for a stretchy brown belt that used to squeeze the life out of me; today it hung off my waist. Jeezum crow, man.

My brother kept grabbing my arm and commenting on my weight loss during his visit, “You’re like a skinny person now. It’s weird. Don’t lose anymore.” Thanks, maybe, I think…wait…

With everything that’s been going on in Japan, it was nice to have Bikrum here for a couple of days. I took him out one night to a private opening reception at a friend’s new bar in Hollywood. It was fun to be out again. I put on my dress from Day 76 (minus the crazy tights) and opted for my Big Girl Shoes. I asked my brother if I looked slutty; he reassured me I did not. (And I trust he would tell me the truth.)

Once at the bar, as I was on my way to the restroom, the friend who owns the place stopped me and said, “Whoa, well, well, aren’t you looking sexy today? What are you trying to do tonight?” I don’t really know what that means, so I just said, “Oh you know, some damage.” (I don’t know what that means either.) I also ran into the Toolsack again, who drunkenly gave me a hug and said, “I love this girl to death.” Yeah, I don’t think so. I managed to make it out of that exchange relatively unscathed, and hours later when I was home in my pj’s, I would receive this text from him, “U still at the bar?” When I said no and he sent me a sad face, I retorted, “Don’t cry. Wha happen? All the other Asian girls left?” I’m not sure what came over me, but it seemed appropriate.

Speaking of Asia (worst segue ever), I have family on my mind. I just got off the phone with my Mom, and she informed me that the situation is still pretty dire in Tokyo. The shelves at all the stores are empty; my aunt was unable to fill her car up with gas after waiting politely, of course, for hours; the aftershocks keep coming; radiation levels are starting to spike. I also learned that I have a few relatives from my Grandma’s side in Sendai who we have not yet been able to make contact with so she’s pretty worried.

In tonight’s dance class, our instructor said that her brother is coming home from Tokyo tomorrow. He has been teaching classes there over the last few years. I asked my Mom if maybe our family should leave and come to Texas or California to stay with us. She said they had talked about the possibility but it’s a pretty huge decision. I’m gonna keep praying. When something like this is happening to people you love, it certainly puts things in perspective.

Day 79 – Monday

Ena - Day 79

Ena: Well, as promised, today I struck some pretty remarkable poses, some real beauts.  There were several pictures that didn’t make the final cut, and by far the most entertaining part of today’s photo shoot was when I fell off of a dolly, landing squarely on my right butt cheek, limbs flailing.  The dolly shot out from under my feet, screeching loudly across the pavement, causing a concerned passerby to stop and stare as I rolled around on the ground in pain and hysterical laughter waving him off; it was all highly entertaining and definitely worth what is sure to be the biggest bruise of my adult life.

I really didn’t mean to (and really shouldn’t have), but this weekend I bought three dresses at Target.  In case you haven’t heard, Target is re-releasing the most popular dresses from the past five years of their guest-designer lines; it’s pretty major.  I picked up this Jonathan Saunders number, an intricately pleated Thakoon design that I hope I have the guts to wear before this project is complete, and a really fun pink and purple polka dot Zac Posen party dress that I plan to wear to a friend’s wedding this summer.

For reasons which I simply cannot explain, I envisioned wearing this dress with leggings and these shoes; I almost wore boots, but these seemed somehow more appropriate.  I bought these platform mary-janes a million years ago; they scream 1994, begging to be paired with a black velvet choker and a sunflower printed baby-doll dress…don’t worry, not gonna go there.

With the exception of a few Halloweens, I have not worn these shoes in over eight years, and the other day, as they fell on my head from their precarious perch atop my overextended closet, I very nearly threw them into my to-be-donated bag.  I guess I’m glad that I kept them – though I am sure that they are neither stylish nor fashion forward – and this anecdote serves as a good example of why I have a hard time parting with clothes and shoes…and also why my closet remains a chaotic mess.

Bina - Day 79

Bina: On Thursday night Pacific Time, as I was obliviously sitting in a speakeasy in downtown Los Angeles, an 8.9 magnitude earthquake hit Japan. When I got home a few hours later from my first date in months, I turned on my laptop to check my email, which of course led to checking Facebook. It was my friend Katie’s status that alerted me to the disaster. The slight buzz that was leftover from a night out vanished, and I immediately turned on CNN and called my mother.

She told me that my Obaachan (grandma) was okay, that my aunt and cousins were okay; they were completely freaked out and scared, but they were safe for the time being. My grandma said that in her 80 years living in Japan, she’d never felt anything like it. She was on the phone with my mother when she said in Japanese, “Oh no, it’s happening again! I’m taking the dog to open, higher ground!” She lives just outside Tokyo in what the Japanese call a “mansion” though really it’s a giant skyscraper complex of tiny apartments. The apartment that my grandmother and aunt live in is on the bottom floor; they could just afford to buy it a few years ago. My Baba-chan (as I like to call her) was home alone when the first big quake hit, and as the aftershocks ensued.  I hated the idea of my grandma being frightened – my beautiful, always well-dressed Baba-chan who still bicycles and ballroom dances and doesn’t have a cruel bone in her entire tiny body.

My Mom was very calm on the phone though, and she said, “All we can do is pray.” So I did. And here is a list of many other ways in which to help the victims in a country I love with all my heart – Japan.

P.S. I am also glad that Ena is okay after her hilarious and yet painful looking fall today! Don’t play with dollies, kids – they are very dangerous! (although I am still laughing)



Day 78 – Friday

Ena: What a crazy Friday, oh my goodness.  I sincerely hope that your Friday has been nowhere near as hectic as mine.  Sheesh.  Today I am wearing something completely boring, and, worse yet, it’s an outfit that I’ve already worn and not that long ago…baahhh!  Ok, ok, so I am wearing different shoes and accessories this time around, but for all intents and purposes it is the same outfit.  What can I say?  It’s Friday, I wanted to be comfortable, my feet needed a break, I should have…wait, why am I making excuses?  It could be much worse, at least I’m not wearing khakis and flip-flops.

As she mentioned yesterday, Bina is out of the office today, off having good time with her brother and enjoying this beautiful Los Angeles weather I hope.  Bina’s absence meant that once again I had to enlist poor JP to take photos of me and my boring outfit; he really deserves a medal or an ice-cream or something.  In case you were wondering, no, I haven’t forgotten the punishment for wearing a boring outfit; I just didn’t want to subject JP to that.  I will make up for it though by posing for some ridiculous shots on Monday…something to look forward to.

Day 77 – Thursday

Ena: Today I made some bold fashion choices, and I feel pretty good.  I purchased this skirt while out shopping with my Grandma during our recent Palm Springs visit.  I absolutely love it; the color, the length, the fabric, the pockets, I love it all.  But when I put it on this morning I began to have second thoughts.  I mean, this skirt is bright, really bright, like jump up and smack you in the face bright, and I wasn’t sure if that was quite the look I was going for.  I wanted to look cute, but I also didn’t want to visually assault anyone.

Like Bina yesterday, I timidly walked to my office this morning not knowing whether I looked fashionable or completely ridiculous and feeling a bit like Mickey Mouse.  Despite Bina’s assurances that I looked neither ridiculous nor like Mickey Mouse, I was still unsure.  As I left the office this afternoon for the long walk to my lunch-time yoga class, I decided that I didn’t care; I like this skirt, I think that I look kinda nice, I don’t care what anyone else thinks.  Just as I made this defiant mental proclamation a woman working wardrobe on something filming around the lot – I know she was wardrobe because she was carrying a bunch of clothes, either that or she works at the drycleaner – smiled at me and said, “I like your outfit.”  Yay.

Bina: So I dialed things down a couple notches today. After the excitement around yesterday’s Day-Glo tights, I went with a simple button-down blouse from a little shop on Melrose, and tried the tribal necklace that Raina gave me for a hint of dramatic flair. I like it peeking out from underneath the blouse; I saw Alexis wear a similar necklace and top once – so that’s my inspiration! Thanks, A!

Tomorrow, I won’t be here because my “little” brother, Bikrum, is coming to visit. He’s surprisingly tall and quiet and wears t-shirts with Biggie Smalls, Tupac, and Carlos The Hangover Baby on them. Aside from our complexions, I don’t think we look very much alike at all. But I guess we turned out okay considering everyone was quite concerned when my parents decided to get married. “But what will your children look like?! Half-Indian and half-Japanese? They will have dark skin and slanty eyes!!!” So I guess there was some relief when we came out just looking kinda Filipino.

People often ask, and today is as good a day as any to tell you the story of how my Indian-born-and-raised father met my Japanese-born-and-raised mother. My mother says they met in a café; my father says they met in a bar. My Dad had been brought to the U.S. by his older brother, who married an American woman he met traveling in India.  My Dad had dropped out of the engineering college where his brother enrolled him and decided to join the U.S. Navy instead. He was then stationed in Japan on the USS Midway as an electrician. His Navy friends had given him the name Joe and he was working on losing his accent as quickly as possible.  For some odd reason, on the night they met, he told my Mom that he was Mexican; I guess he thought it seemed less strange than saying he was from India.

Despite some language barriers, my mother quickly fell for this charming foreigner, and after a couple of years of love letters and courting, he proposed. This was a big deal. There was someone who my Dad’s family had arranged for him to marry in India; my Mom would have to leave her own mother and sisters behind in Japan to move around the world. But they were in love. In 1976, my Mom immigrated to the U.S. with my Dad, and they were married in a simple ceremony at City Hall, followed by celebratory Taco Bell. They have been married for almost 35 years. It wasn’t all smooth-sailing, but they are still together and they are still in love.

For most of those 35 years, their Passion was providing for our family. My Dad paid the bills. My Mom nurtured us in every way she could. It is only in the last few years that both of them have found their own passions again. My Dad is now devoted to cultivating the farmhouse he built in my mother’s honor on the family land in his hometown Indian village. My Mom is now passionate about Hula and Tahitian dancing, after trying out a few other things like guitar, piano, and belly dancing. They both inspire me to remember, again, that it is never too late for now.

In other news, I’m not sure exactly how this happened, but – gulp – I seem to have a date tonight.

Day 76 – Wednesday

Ena - Day 76

Ena: It’s Ash Wednesday, Lent is upon us.  Did you make any Lenten sacrifices?  I did, but they’re not really very good.  It’s hard to choose something to give up when you don’t really have any vices.  I thought about giving up dairy (my arch nemesis), but my boyfriend put up a fight; Lent really is harder when you live with someone.  I also thought about abstaining from shopping for 40 days, but, due to the nature of this project, I decided against that – I have to respect the process, right?

Getting pictures today was difficult to say the least.  The lot is abuzz with activity and it seemed that every spot we tried was already in use.  We also had some trouble with the light; it’s very sunny and bright here today and most of the pictures were either washed out or full of shadows.  The thing that I am most disappointed about is that the color of my pants really doesn’t come through at all.  These pants are powder-blue and they look lovely with this top, the colors are really great…you’ll just have to take my word for it.

Bina - Day 76

Bina: “Why not keep things in the 80s? Those are back, right?” Well, that’s how I reassured myself this morning as I got dressed. I picked up this black-and-hot-pink-striped jersey number for 10 bucks at Forever21 and while they seem to have already pulled all of their tights (my new addiction) for Spring, I found these bright turquoise beauties at The Icing – who are still well-stocked in a variety of styles and colors – you know, if you’re in the market for that sort of thing.

I was so nervous walking from my car to our building this morning that I hid everything behind my trench coat. It wasn’t until I saw Ena in our office, unveiled my get-up, and got her approval that I wasn’t completely scandalous and ridiculous that I started walking around in all my Bright-and-Tight 80s glory. Um, yeah, this dress and these tights are not for wallflowers. They are attention-getters – maybe a little too much attention. But I do feel good about myself, nonetheless, and have received many compliments and greetings. In fact, I was grabbing a hazelnut latte at The Coffee Bean this morning, and Madonna’s “Material Girl” came on over the speakers; I actually found myself dancing in line.  Totally weird, but I thought the song was apropos.

What does it mean that I’ve become this passionate about fashion? Does it mean I’m now a superficial high-maintenance material girl? I hope not. I prefer to think I’m taking pride in myself and my appearance. Maybe being a little high-maintenance is a good thing – I am taking care of myself in a way that I had stopped doing over the last few years – inside and out.

One other material thing you may have noticed – I finally got a haircut! It’s still fairly long, but she chopped off 5 inches of dead hair.  In some cultures, the act of cutting your hair is the cutting off of the flow of thought; you sever away past thoughts from future deeds. Cutting one’s hair usually occurs when one chooses to make a major change in one’s life, putting past misdeeds behind them, and beginning a new life. Awesome. I do feel a little lighter.

Day 75 – Tuesday

Ena - Day 75

Ena: Today has been a manic, meeting-filled Tuesday; I’m spent.  I suppose it’s better to be rendered brain-dead on a day – like today – when I’m wearing something pretty boring and have absolutely nothing new to report.  Sometimes I can’t believe that I’ve actually done this for 75 days, that I’ve actually put effort into my appearance and come up with something to write for 75 days.  I’m not delusional, I know that I haven’t exactly shined in either department every day, but, still, I am very proud of myself.

Earlier today I felt bad, like I was cheating or something, because I have worn this dress fairly recently.  I found myself hoping that I don’t become one of those people who wears something only once before becoming bored of it, someone who feels it necessary to update their wardrobe constantly; I don’t have the luxury to fear repeats, I’m poor.  I would love to write more on this subject, but it’s late and I am running to a meeting.  So, as it turns out, I am not shining physically or verbally today.  Thank God it’s Day 75 and I’ve learned not to care.

Bina - Day 75

Bina: Like I said, again I present my best interpretation of 9 1/2 Weeks. Sadly, I did not find a bowler hat at the Glendale Goodwill this weekend. I was, however, very pleased to find the tweed blazer (with suede elbow-patches) and the amazing skirt (with canvas belt) for a grand total of $20. I also used my Valentine’s Day Forever21 gift card from Mom to get these dirty brown oxfords, which are amazingly comfortable. And the wifebeater, oh yeah, that I already had lying around. It may not seem like the most obviously sexy outfit, but somehow that’s how it makes me feel wearing it. I dabbed on a little red lipstick, smudged on some black eyeliner, and disheveled my hair a bit to finish off the job.

When we were taking our guerilla photos today, a crewman heckled at me, “Jacket off!” And then he laughed almost maniacally as he strolled by carrying his ladder. Mortifying. Although not as mortifying as what Ena thought he said, which was “Jack it off!” So it could’ve been worse, I guess. Other than that weird thing, I’ve felt extremely confident all day, making eye contact and smiling at strangers, talking even to strangers. Oh, about nothing in particular really – which drink we’re going to choose at the soda fountain (Strawberry Fanta!), or why the world’s shmooziest mailman decided to shave his very white scalp. Trust me, our mailman is a trip. But it just feels good not to be hiding behind myself anymore, if that makes any sense.

I can’t believe that we’re on Day 75 – that we’ve actually kept this blogging thing up for 75 days. Don’t get me wrong; I know we ain’t curin’ cancer over here, and people have been blogging since before I even knew what blogging was, but still, yay us. Ena and I actually air-high-fived (because we’re dorks) across our office this afternoon as we discussed how happy we are that we’re actually doing something we said we were going to do. (Oh yeah, there was even a whole hare-brained “Ena and Bina Eat LA” video series that was going to happen at some point, people.)  And yes, I know we still have 25 days left to go, but I do already feel proud that while I was going through some of the lowest moments of my life, I’ve had enough faith in myself to keep this thing up. I think it’s helped to hold me up too.

Day 74 – Monday

Ena - Day 74

Ena: Well, it’s Monday and I am wearing a skirt.  Since overcoming my fear of skirts, I have worn quite a few – not that I’m bragging or anything – but this one’s different.  This skirt is long and pleated, it has pockets in the front and back, it is a size 10.  Yes, that’s right, a size 10.  It is vintage though, and everyone knows that a vintage 10 is a modern 4, which really is still too big but not quite as bad.

The thing is, I really, really like this skirt; I like the color and the cut, I like the craftsmanship, I like the belt-loops and all the pockets.  When I bought it at the Goodwill I imagined wearing it high on my waist, cinched up with a red belt – I got this one at the same store for this exact purpose; I love the trumpet detail, it’s fantastic – all slouchy-hands-in-pockets style; I imagined this outfit.  But now that I have it on, I am torn between thinking that it looks really cute and thinking that it looks really big.  The jury’s still out, though I am loving slouching around the office with my hand in my pockets, it really is the best.

Further to Friday’s post and an aahhh-mazing tip that I received in a reader response (thank you, Pamie!), I am happy to announce that I have made contact with an organization here in Los Angeles that offers scholastic tutoring on the weekends; contact…with an actual person…imagine that.  826 LA is a non-profit writing and tutoring center (perfect!) with a location not too far from my house, and I am scheduled to participate in an orientation/training session on Saturday the 26th.  I am so excited, I can hardly wait.

Bina - Day 74

Bina: Well, it’s Monday again and there is a gigantic JACKASS playground being set-up right outside our building, complete with log slide, trampolines, sumo suits, and an enormous rubber wrecking ball.  Really, it’s sheer torture that I’m stuck in this office and can’t go outside and play. Damn you, Johnny Knoxville! This is somehow his fault.

Not that I’m dressed appropriately for that kind of raucous debauchery anyway; for today, today I dressed like a lady. I know it’s a bit more like a lady in a 1988 Banana Republic campaign, but a lady nonetheless. This is how I came to be wearing this very-unlike-me ensemble: Saturday, I watched 9 ½ Weeks for the first time ever. Yes, I know. But even more than being aroused by young Mickey Rourke, I found myself being incredibly turned on by Kim Basinger’s wardrobe. Weird.

When I went thrifting the next day, I saw everything with new eyes – Kim Basinger’s Eyes in 9 ½ Weeks – and proceeded to purchase a bunch of cheap items all inspired by the film.  Not to worry, you’ll be seeing the other new pieces peppered in throughout the week. (I know you were worried.) It was fun to shop this way actually. It was fun to know what I wanted. It was fun to have a vision. It was fun to be inspired. That is the whole point, after all.

This morning, when I entered the lot, a man on a cart slowed down next to me, and said with a smirk, “Good morning.” He looked me over as I responded curtly and then he was on his lecherous way. I don’t know what it was about this outfit that made him do that, but if he thinks he can blindfold me while feeding me jalapeños, he’s got another thing coming…