I fucking hate clothes shopping.
Seriously, I can’t begin to tell you how much the whole ordeal of spending hours looking for something I like — only to try it on and find it doesn’t fit quite right, or doesn’t match my complexion, or the collar sticks up at a weird angle — makes me want to bite the head off a goddamn fruit bat. Mere words, even those as hate-driven as my own, cannot convey what a soul-crushing, beer-requiring ordeal clothes shopping is for me.
And this was in America.
Japan… Jesus H. Christ. It’s a wonder I’m able to step foot into that carnival hall of horrors that is the Japanese clothing store. Not only is the changing area a rickety dais of balsa wood and curtain that even the dressing rooms at Goodwill can look down on and snigger at, the way that clothes are sized here is, well, fucked. Shirts are easy — If it’s a Large it’s really a Medium, if it’s a Medium it’s really a Small, and if it’s a Small it’s really a dishrag. Pants, however, are a different form of humiliation.
The fact that waist and length sizes utilize this so-called “metric system” is bad enough; as an added bonus, there tend to be infuriatingly random gaps between sizes. For example, one can often find pants sized 82 cm and 85 cm — and nothing at all for anything in between. I’m not the most mathematically inclined person, but I’m relatively certain there at least two possible size options between 82 and 85. This is of particular concern to me, because a size 85 practically falls off of me while a size 82 is too tight.
Tightness alone I could deal with; for whatever reason, however, Japanese-made size 82 pants fit just a little strangely on my foreign-made body.
Put simply, while I’d like to think I have a decent groin, it certainly doesn’t bunch and swell like a goddamn sack of grapefruit. Nor does it project outwards with ’70s-era machismo, as if straining against ironed polyester and inviting itself to be ogled. Say a kind word for my groin, for such is how it appears in a pair of Japan’s size 82 pants.
After much cursing, a beer in the parking lot, and a renewed search of the clothing rack, I was at last able to find a pair of size 83 jeans. I purchased them, and am in fact wearing them now.
Because, you know, I’d rather not be known around the neighborhood as Projectile Crotch Man.