You know you’ve lived too long when you see culottes come back into fashion.
Culottes, also called Palazzo pants, or their shorter version, Gaucho pants, are once again all the rage with women, forcing me to relive – in my mind, not my wardrobe – my fun and fashion-fearless 70s.
From modified Mods to Granny-style to Bohemian look, the boomers had it all covered, or not, depending on the neckline. As of this year, I’ve already come through a resurgence of the mini-skirt, tent dress, hot pants and sheer garments. Now the fashion experts tell me that flares, baby-doll look, tie-dye clothes and geometric prints are back in style.
And turtlenecks? Perfect.
The only useful purpose for turtlenecks back in the 70s was to cover up the dark hickies the morning after. Now that turtlenecks are back in style, they may serve a useful purpose for boomers who can hide double or crepey-skin chins. And if we pull up the turtleneck far enough, we can cover up the droopy eyelids too.
Readers can always outdo me.
I was sitting behind a woman at The Exploration Place recently. She had read my column (I was quite flattered she hadn’t simply perused it) about getting nervous because a police officer was apparently on the look-out for a vehicle matching the description of my white, older model Chevy Malibu. She had a story of her own which I think is hilarious – after the fact.
The woman was driving down 15th Avenue on her way home one day when an RCMP officer in a police cruiser motioned her to pull over to the side of the road. Like me, this law-abiding citizen was wracking her brain trying to figure out what she had done wrong.
“This officer who I saw was quite young, walked over and looked into the back of my car. He said he’d stopped me to check out my plants – I had just come from a local nursery where I’d bought some delphinium plants, they were sitting on my back seat.”
The woman was flabbergasted that this apparently inexperienced police officer thought that her green plants were pot plants in bud or bloom, or whatever the correct term is (as I said in the above piece on fashion, the 70s are now just a distant and rather foggy memory).
She said she patiently explained where she’d just come from and named the species of perennials. After one more careful look at the plants (they don’t carry police perennial probes), the officer seemed satisfied with her explanation.
“I guess horticulture isn’t one of the things they teach them in police training, I asked him: ‘Do you really think anyone would actually drive around in broad daylight in the middle of the day – with marijuana plants in their car?’”
The officer replied something to the effect that in his line of work, he has seen people do just about everything.
He’s got that right.
The woman went on her way, still quietly perplexed, and I assume when she arrived home, got out her gardening tools and began digging holes for the exonerated plants at the centre of the officer’s “investigation.”
Now it’s a funny story to tell her friends and this reporter.
But I’d love to have been back at the detachment after the incident, to see, I would think, a very sheepish RCMP member writing in his notes about his first encounter with leafy delphinium plants. I just hope his wife, if he has one, never sends him to the grocery store for turnips.