Clothes woes

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.

f-ingThe 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.


11 Responses

  1. I find it near impossible to find good kit in Japan, i buy most of my stuff from e-bay or direct from an online store. The sizes just don’t fit my physique, which i like to think is semi normal …. i never had a problem finding stuff to fit me in the west.

    The majority of Japan fashion doesn’t suit a gent of my years either, a lot of it is a little too rockstar.

  2. While you were out looking for pants that fit your crotch, did you see any cute red coats?

    I might be needing a new one.

  3. Being from sunny cali, I never needed long sleeve shirts until I lived in frigid Gunma. Now I have a wonderful collection of long sleeve shirts that go about to mid forearm. ><;;;

  4. Drinking beer while clothes shopping? Now that is an idea. (Stops to jot down note).

    Oddly enough I recently successfully purchased a pair of “pants” (as I believe trousers are called in the former colonies) at Uniqlo, and after having them shortened a little (a service they very kindly provide for free) they fit perfectly. And should I ever need to provide emphasis in the groin area, I have a pair of pants (underpants for those reading in North American dialects) which I mistakenly purchased in “M” size, which I can scrunch up and push down the front.

  5. Thank god my wife helps me with my clothes shopping.

  6. I always get great suits from Perfect Suit Factory; always European-style, not a fucking American job with shoulder pads that makes me look like a mafia hitman.

    As for casual, Uniqlo does the trick for me most of the time, except for those ungodly button-up shirts with the collars clipped at mid-neck. A fucking travesty, I tell you.

    “We all float down here”
    Can almost see the teeth grinning up at me from behind the sewer grating.

  7. I know what you mean, but I’d wager being a non-obese, oh-sorry-didn’t-see-you-there-short male in the US makes clothes shopping equally aggravating.

    See, in the States clothing designers apparently think that men who are under 5’7″ are so depressed about their lacking height that they necessarily eat themselves into obesity. Why else would you have, as the smallest available men’s size, 28 inseam jeans with no less than a 32″ waist at most every department store? Think about it.

    Personally, I now choose humiliation over frustration and shop in the boys department. I think Japan is fine, since there are abundant dish rags for people like me to wear!

    I empathize with you not, foreign Sasquatches.

  8. I like the clear progression–from the fairly presentable FOB gaijin, to the long-term resident, he who shows too much forearm & ankle, sports crotch-hugging pants (I maintain none too healthy for the boys), and generally makes a humiliating lurch towards the androgyne J-male. Make up, 300$ haircuts and pasties on my nipples can’t be far off!

    6 months in, I’m still fairly set–Unikuro gets it done for underwear/t’s, but as a 193cm bloke, it’s inevitable that my time in the goon brigade will come soon enough. 30cm foot don’t help at all.

  9. Nothin’ better than a perfect pants-crotch match.

    And hey, at least Projectile Crotch Man would be better than, say… Projectile Diarrhea Man. That’s my opinion, anyway. 🙂

  10. Update–my lank frame was clothed yesterday at both Montbell (down jacket) and Eddie Bauer (sport coat)–surely both are in your Kantou region. Particularly surprised by the M-bell–kick ass quality and cheaper than N. Face/Patagonia etc.

  11. I love Japanese clothes–they fit. Or possibly my tops are too tight, but I am so used to it now I think it is normal. I hate loose shirts–I need something tight to hold me together. In the US I have to shop in the juniors section, and this age! Clothes are expensive in Tokyo though. Mine are pretty much all either designer MK, Marui store brand RU, or Unilqo.

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