Pants of the Past: A #TBT Edition

9 Jul

One thing that I think is exponentially valuable is staying in touch with your past.

A great philosopher and fledgling poet once said, “To forget the past is to make murky the waters of your future.”

Alright, alright, I said that. Just now. Quietly. To myself. And to no one else. Now people are looking.

Feel free to quote me!

(Also, what does “fledgling” mean? Because it sounds like some kind of baby aquatic animal but I don’t want to assume anything because I’ve accused things of being baby aquatic animals in the past and it has never ended well.)

Reflecting on your past is important because it reminds you of what’s worked well for you in the past, and also prevents you from making the same mistakes over and over (see “fledgling”).

The importance of this duality is why I am a big fan of apps that let you travel back in time.

Every morning – after I drink my coffee and read my horoscope and wonder what it would be like to be a “morning exerciser” and stare at my fridge, hoping a pancake will fly into my mouth, and ask my mom if my outfit is too “harlot-in-training esque for the workplace” and accidentally bump the front of my sister’s car with the back of my car – I open my Timehop app and prepare to reacquaint myself with the past.

Some days, the past is really warm and friendly, like Diane Keaton in a movie about older people falling in love (a favorite genre of mine).

Other days, the past is a cruel, dark tunnel that mocks me and makes me question why I haven’t been assigned a permanent life coach all these years…

It’s always kind of thrilling, wondering what Timehop has in store for the day. What was I doing a year ago? Two years? Eight years?

Was I exploring ancient ruins?

Or meeting my idol, Judy Blume?

Was I discovering a new species of plant?

Or planting a tree in a lovely community garden?

Or, was I riding a camel through the deserts and wondering from whence my next sip of water would come?

Often times, I forget that Timehop is not a life experience generator, and is merely a way to record actual life experiences. So, I guess there’s always a bit of a “come down” with Timehop…that moment when your realize that two years ago, you weren’t meeting Judy Blume, but were playing The Sims for four hours while listening to your parents yell, “Is this really how you want to spend your Christmas Eve??”

Yesterday morning, as I wiped the crust from my eyes (not an obscene amount of crust, just the normal amount), I grabbed my phone and prepared to travel through time.

Oh goody, I thought! What treasures and troves will I find today? 

No treasures. No troves.

Unless you count khaki material as a “treasure” and a gangly pre-pubescent body as a “trove.”

It turns out that eight years ago, I was in China. Which is pretty cool!

It also turns out that eight years ago, a pair of pink Old Navy trousers were also in China.

Somehow, the two of us met. And it was a doomed love from the start:

pink pants1

There we are, in all of our glory! This photo was taken during the early stages of our relationship – I can tell because my face looks jet lagged. (But then again, anyone’s face would get tired of bearing that much eyebrow weight…)

My first thought upon seeing this photo was that if I ever have a daughter and if I ever see her wearing calf-grazing pants at the age of twelve, I will send her to bed without dessert. (Just kidding, that is cruel. If anything, I’ll give her two desserts because she’s clearly crying for help and in need of emotional support.)

My second observation was that several of my comrades in the photo are also wearing calf-grazing pants.

Hmm perhaps it was calf-grazing pant day? I rationalized.

Or, perhaps my pants were in fact full length, but were covered by flesh-colored tube socks? A much better fashion statement.

Willing to look past – what I assumed to be – a singular breach of calf-grazing etiquette, I scrolled down to the next Timehop photo:

pink pants 2

What’s this?? Oh look! THEY’RE BACK.




Judging from how the other girls are dressed, it looks like I was pretty underdressed for the weather. While “beach to middle aged office environment” is a style that does have a time and a place, it’s best when paired with an adequate spring coat.

Also, please note that these photos were not taken in the same day. No, no. Everyone else has managed to pull together a new, different outfit. I, on the other hand, have always been of the mindset, “If it’s ugly and ill-fitting the first time, try again!”

So that’s clearly what I did. In the second photo, it does appear that I went with a lower cut white t-shirt – a risqué look.

True to form, though, my “effortless” hoodie returns in the second photo! From my body posture, it doesn’t look like the hoodie is particularly warm. (Or maybe I was just trying to replicate an advertisement for The Breakfast Club.)

Not fashionable, nor functional. That’s how I like all of my apparel.

Wait, wait, WAIT. What is that dangling from my arm in the second photo? Shall we zoom in?

fanny pack

The picture quality isn’t great, but if you squint your eyes, you can make out the outline of a…FANNY PACK.

To answer your questions in a streamlined, orderly way:

  1. Yes, that is a fanny pack.
  2. Yes, I did choose to wear the fanny pack like a purse and not like a fanny pack, so as to fit in with my age mates.
  3. No, it did not occur to me to bring a purse instead of a fanny pack. I was convinced that a fanny pack worn like a purse was the only way to travel.
  4. Yes, people asked me why I carried my fanny pack that way. I told them I was warding off future back problems.
  5. No, it didn’t work. I still have back problems.
  6. Yes, said pack did have many compartments. There was even one where I could store my FILM camera.
  7. Yes, I pretended my camera was digital because I didn’t want to seem “uncool.” Apparently, film cameras do way more damage than FANNY PACKS.

At the age of twelve, I had managed to accomplish the “I’m just going to run a few errands!” look that suburban 40-somethings take years to perfect. I was way ahead of my time.

To be fair, we were only allowed to bring a couple of pairs of pants, which is *probably* – but by no means *definitely* – why I was so fond of the pink pants.

There was one other pair of pants that I think is worth mentioning:

zip pants

What you see here is a pair of relaxed fitting “zipper” pants – the sporty kind that has removable parts. You know, in case you have an awesome calf tattoo that you want to spontaneously brag about to coworkers. It’s so simple! You just rip off your pant leg and BOOM, office show and tell.

I remember buying those pants and thinking they were a very wise travel investment. Waterproof and dirt colored – très chic and très multi-purpose.

BUT NOT TO WORRY. THE HOODIE DIDN’T GO ANYWHERE! (And neither did The Breakfast Club grimace.)

So what do we take away from this adventure into the past?

The only person that can wear the pants in your life is YOU.

So please, choose wisely.

You can quote me on that.


What were you doing eight years ago? Comment below!

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