Tuesday, December 07, 2010

A random confession about t-shirts

I'm oddly particular about t-shirts in that often they feel like they're strangling me and therefore it can be hard to find ones that are comfortable.  Add to that the fact that I've been going to the gym every day (and thus needing many t-shirts because I'm too lazy to do laundry that often) and you understand why, when I find a t-shirt that fits and is on sale, I buy several at once.

And it just so happens that some of my favorite t-shirts are from Old Navy (love the cotton, love the distressed look, love the fit, etc).   And it also just so happens that the recent batch of shirts on sale were the ones with sports team logos on them.  So I bought a bunch.  Sure, because I live in Charlotte I got one for the Carolina Panthers, but other than that I chose based purely on color and design of the logo.

not me
Which is how I ended up with one for the Indianapolis Colts (blue with a horseshoe), the Philadelphia Phillies (pink/red with a P on it - wearing it right now), New York Giants (blue with NY), and Green Bay Packers (I liked the green).  Notice that there's no theme -- different sports, different types of logos, different seasons, etc.  I'm telling you, I really just chose based on pure aesthetics.

What I didn't really think through when I bought these is that there are a lot of people out there who care very much about their sports teams.  And walking around with their team emblazoned on your chest is an open invitation to chat about it.  While I enjoy all sports and generally understand them all (and played several), I don't particularly have the time these days to stay really on top of things.  Which is perhaps a mistake.

Because almost every day, someone comments on my shirt and asks me things about whatever team I happen to be wearing.  I walked to lunch a few weeks ago and someone shouted at me across the room and gave me a thumbs up.  At first I thought they might know me, might be commenting on my style (which I soon dismissed because I was in full-on author deadline mode) and finally realized that, no, they were fans of the Giants and I was wearing my Giants shirt.

Yesterday, someone asked me how my team did this weekend.  I had to look down at my shirt (Colts) and thankfully remembered Barry Goldblatt had tweeted about the Cowboys beating the Colts so at least I could answer that question.  The day before that I walked into the gym and the guy behind my desk mentioned something about my team and I had to stammer that I wasn't even quite sure who the logo represented (he let me know which was very nice of him).

This post is really apropos of nothing, just that I always find it very lovely how complete strangers become less so when one person is wearing something familiar to the other, especially a sports logo.  But I also feel a little bit like a liar every time I put one of these shirts on -- like I should apologize to those strangers who do start conversations with me only to realize that what they thought we have in common isn't true.

And who knows, maybe they'll make a fan of me yet!


Cat Clarke said...

I bought loads of those T-shirts from Old Navy the last time I was in the States and exactly the same thing happened to me! At least you know which sports they relate to - I am completely clueless. Luckily I live in the UK, so can wear my T-shirts and be comfortable with my lack of sporting knowledge!

Anonymous said...

I have a huge, HUGE head. Not as in "Mommy, mommy, look at the woman with the giant head"; as in "One size does NOT freakin' fit all."

Anywho. I'm going somewhere with this.

When it comes to hats, I am just like you with nice shirt that doesn't choke a person. I will buy whatever hat fits me as long as it's in a nice color (sound familiar?). So one of my first hats was the NY Yankees. The hat did me just fine when I was living in NY, and when I went back to AZ, no one said much of anything because, well, Westerners just aren't like that.

Then I moved to NH, neighbor to Massachusetts. Which meant we flew into Logan. While on the plane when it was still on the tarmac in AZ, I got razzed for the hat. Then, I hit Boston and REALLY got razzed. It got to the point that my husband told me I needed a new hat--the guy who wears holes in his shirts with pride.

So I got a Red Sox hat (it fit). And when that one died? I was sick of all the "Hey, did you watch the game?" comments and so went rogue--I got a Pittsburgh Pirates hat. Talk about no one bothering you again!

I guess I'm posting this to let you know next time you're at Old Navy, try to find a Pirates shirt. No one will mess over a team no one's in to. :o)

-Susan Colebank

Carrie Ryan said...

I'd wear a pirates shirt in a heartbeat because it's PIRATES! Who doesn't want to wear pirates!? I mean, if they had a zombie or ninja shirt I'd be all over that too :)

And I confess, Cat, that I had to look up some of the logos to figure out who they were for this post.

Unknown said...

This isn't QUITE the same thing, but I have a t-shirt from Juicy Couture that I got for about 75% off.

It just says Juicy--but it has a classy anchor on it! (Is this a plus? I don't really know.)

Sometimes I feel like I can't wear it in public.

Chris {frecklemama} said...

Awesome. Hilarious! Reminds me of the time I had to buy a baseball hat to take on NOLS and I picked a Harvard one because I like Harvard and the deep red. Wouldn't you know that someone in that tiny group of campers was a current Harvard student. She gave me the evil eye constantly for wearing a "dishonest" hat. Ooops!

Meaghan said...

Go Giants! I have one of those shirts too, they are quite comfy!

I just wanted to leave a comment and let you know how much I LOVED your book, The Forest of Hands and Teeth. I downloaded it to my Kindle on Friday night and was finished with it yesterday afternoon... at which point I promptly downloaded and started reading The Dead Tossed Waves. You are a wonderful, inspiring writer - I am so glad to have found your books (and blog) and can't wait to read more.

It is an amazing world you created for your characters (who I totally fell in love with) so I hope that some of them will make appearances in the next two books.

Okay, I could gush all day about how great and inspiring your writing is, so I'm just going to stop now before this gets weird.

Take care!