Brazil, Day 5: Fernando de Noronha / by vanessa


There are certain sartorial choices you regret even as you are putting them together. And yet, still they happen, as if the universe never warned you. About two months ago I was browsing Piperlime,  and specifically the celebrity picks section.  I am not proud of this.  Anyway, after scrolling through Rachel Zoe's and Rachel Bilson's selections (too Santa Monica, too your-stylist-picked-that-for-you, respectively), I happened upon Olivia Palermo's.  You might remember her from MTV's The City. (Or you might not, if you're the sort with an ounce of dignity.) I always hate-liked Olivia.  On one hand, her skin was far too pretty for her deep-seated insecurity; on the other, next to Joe Zee she was the smartest dressed on the show.  So naturally, of the three guest stylists, I liked her choices the best.  About halfway down the page I noticed an outfit I immediately pictured myself wearing for my company's Christmas party: black long sleeve tee (check), black fur vest (pretend I don't see it), sequined shorts (buy!), black tights (check) and black ankle boots (check). I had to have the shorts. As I often do with clothing I 100% need, I visualized all the other things in my closet that would also go perfectly with them, for example, white short-sleeved tee, Converse low tops. Actually it only takes one outfit for me and I'm in. So I got them. And I've been waiting ever since to wear them.  I smiled when I packed them for Brazil. 

I've been staring at my sequined shorts all week. Mostly because they are a stark departure from the hobo look I typically sport on vacation. The problem is one of comfort and convenience: I wear the same things over and over again because they're comfortable and also because I'm lazy.  Also, for going out, I prefer dive places over fancy stuff on vacation. So the cute white Sessun dress I had envisioned wearing while sitting by a pool sipping a caipirinha never made it out of my suitcase.  Long story long, I couldn't wait to don my new shorts for our last night in FdN at one of the island's best restaurants.

And then I tried them on. Somehow I hadn't thought to do that earlier. Not only was I not sure I even liked them, they were itchy in a foreboding sort of way. So I put a poll out on Facebook ( of course), and I asked: Yay or nay? But then I threw caution to the wind and wore them without looking at the comments. I didn't end up regretting the aesthetics.  Y'all, I looked SO cute standing in line at the buffet.

I wish I could say it ended there. Those shorts are still with me. Well, the blisters caused by the sequins rubbing against my skin on the disastrous mile and a half walk home are still with me.  The scene, in retrospect, was pitiable.  I fashioned those shorts into everything from a diaper to low-riders, changing every 20 or so paces, when the chafing in a particular spot became unbearable.  My friend even offered me his sweater to use as a skirt instead.  I stoically declined. I'm fine, I insisted.

When I finally got home, I checked Facebook.  Turns out the poll came in fairly even.   Some were more diplomatic than others, (my "curls would make anything look cute!").  I jokingly said that I needed Neosporin, and then woke up this morning to find that it wasn't a joke after all.  :(

So this will be the story that I tell when I explain at my company Christmas party next week why I'm wearing MC Hammer pants.