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Charlie Hatton
Brookline, MA



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Howdy, friendly reading person!
I'm on a bit of a hiatus right now, but only to work on other projects -- one incredibly exciting example being the newly-released kids' science book series Things That Make You Go Yuck!
If you're a science and/or silliness fan, give it a gander! See you soon!

Picture-Perfect Pants

(Sundays are for science! But Mondays can be, too!

So if you missed yesterday’s Secondhand SCIENCE post on neutrinos, hop on over for a look. I promise it’s the ninja-y-est, most Bigfooty article about physics you’ll read all week.

Or at least until Sunday, when I ruin science again. Stay tuned for that. Meanwhile…)

I’ve never paid much attention to the latest fashions or styles. This should be clear enough from every picture ever taken of me — even the ones posted on the internet.

Charlie aka Constable Zolton

All right. Especially the ones posted on the internet.

One example of my laissez faire attitude toward haute couture: I bought some new jeans recently. On Amazon, using a tag ripped out of a current pair as a guide — because I don’t want the “hot new fresh”; I want the thing I’ve got that fits my ass and has the pockets I like, only without the scraggly leg cuffs or that weird stain on the crotch I still can’t explain.

(Seriously, is that mustard? Curry sauce? Did I dry hump a bowl of Velveeta and then forget about it? What?)

I bought three pairs — one I needed, one for backup, and one in case another cheese-thrusting emergency comes up — and I was mostly happy with my choice. Except for one thing — I usually get stonewashed pants. I like those. They’re lighter and softer and feel a little worn-in already.

I’ve had non-stonewashed pants; for the first six months, they feel like wearing two huge wrapping paper tubes around your legs, taped together to a cardboard codpiece. I’m not into that. It’s like being a life-sized flat Stanley fetish doll. No, thank you.

But the best I could find on Amazon was “medium stonewashed”. I don’t know what that means, exactly — do they wash them for less time? Or with smaller stones? Is the procedure the same, but carried out by a tarot reader who can tell the pants’ future? I can’t say.

All I know is, “medium stonewashed” came in my size, and most others. Actual “stonewashed stonewashed” pants were available in just two sizes. One was a 28-inch waist, which would work wonderfully, so long as I abandon the notion that “pants” are a thing meant to cover parts of my body north of the lower thigh. The other was a 52-inch waist, which my wife might be able to climb into with me.

(Only she wouldn’t, because she wouldn’t be caught dead wearing stonewashed pants, because apparently they’re unfashionable this year. Or this month. Or anytime before three o’clock on Tuesday; I really don’t keep up with the rules on these things.)

In fact, the missus was quite happy to learn about my order adjustment, and offered that with their limited selection, “maybe Amazon is trying to help you dress better“.

I rather doubt that. Given the outrageous shitton of poor decisions (and fake poor decisions) I’ve made during Amazon orders — and Amazon’s relentless, non-judging enablement of more self-defeating behavior by making recommendations based on those very same poor decisions — I don’t think Clan Bezos is going to draw the line at a pair of pants two shades lighter than they’re wearing in Milan this spring. I just don’t see it.

In the meantime, I’ve got three pairs of not-quite-cardboardish-but-still-somewhat-sandpapery new pants to break in. And to lighten up. And try not to stain in mysterious ways, at least until they’ve appeared with me in a decent photograph or two.

Oh, who am I kidding? These things probably already have polka-dotted something-or-other spilled all over them. Or they’ll be around my knees in any picture that gets taken. You don’t have to be a stonewash medium to see that coming.

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