February 2021 Get Out of a Rut Project day 5

I’ve had an outfit planned for today all week. (In fact, it was originally going to happen earlier in the week.) And then I put it on and I disliked it. I disliked it so much that I considered scrapping today. I took some deep breaths and figured out another outfit. That one went so badly that I was briefly in tears and really considered scrapping today. But I gave myself a little time to calm down and looked around my dressing room and decided screw it, it’s Friday, and casualness (if not whimsy) are encouraged. So we end up with an improvised casual-Friday goth outfit instead.

Gray fleece jacket: Soft Surroundings
Black T-shirt: Woodland Park Zoo ZooStore
Black and gray check pants: Torrid
Boots: Fluevog Earl of Warwick Lancaster
Makeup—Aromaleigh unless otherwise stated
Foundation, concealer, undereye: standard
Contour: Insectarium Alucita
Eye shadows: Moth (gray with pink/green interference) and Risque (cool gray satin) (discontinued), MEOW Cosmetics Winter Spirits Sparkling (LE)
Liner: Drama Queen Silver (discontinued)
Mascara: standard
Rouge: Vernal Roses (LE, but Amalasuntha is a re-creation of it)
Highlighter: Luminary (discontinued)
Finishing powder: Orpheus and Eurydice Beloved
Lips: NYX Matte Lipstick Ultra Dare (may be discontinued, but the line still exists) topped with Shimmer Down Lip Veil Goth Love (discontinued)
Earrings: Fred Meyer
Necklace: purchased a few years ago from a vendor at the Mourning Market artisan fair in Seattle
(You also get freshly-washed, still-damp hair that is fairly uncontrollable; I haven’t had a haircut in more than a year and a half.)

How much do I love fleece jackets from Soft Surroundings? So much that I have four (different colors) in this specific style, and two others in different styles, and I’m continually trawling eBay for others. Remember what I said yesterday about the joint need for comfortable and office appropriate? These hit that intersection perfectly.

I’m not normally given to buying T-shirts from attractions, but this one is special. First, it’s absurdly goth, and that alone might have been enough. Second, Woodland Park Zoo is very special to me. I originally became a volunteer there in 2010 (which is when I bought this shirt), and spent a year serving as a keeper’s aide, where I got to make food for red pandas and tiny deer, help weigh swans and southern screamers, and assist in hand-raising of a flamingo chick. It was one of the most meaningful experiences of my life and ultimately led to me changing professional paths into the nonprofit world, as well as other volunteer work with organizations focused on environmental and wildlife conservation. I returned to WPZ as a volunteer in 2015 and am currently a docent with focus in snow leopard conservation, bats, Komodo dragons, and African Savannah and Pacific Northwest ecosystems. Of course, I haven’t actually volunteered in nearly a year; it’s not yet safe to have volunteer educators on grounds. But I will go back eventually, and in the meantime my absurdly goth shirt helps me remember this place I love.

The pants are notable because for a really long time—somewhere in the realm of 15 years—I did not wear pants at all. I had a really hard time finding pants that fit (see my diatribe about fit on day 2 of the project) and I didn’t like how I looked. When I did start wearing them again it was mostly for my volunteer work. But over the last year or so, I’ve stopped feeling quite as negative about I how I look in them. Since last August I’ve bought five pairs, all skinny. Most are from Torrid, which has a lot to do with it—I can be confident that pants from them will fit in the challenging places. They’re still mostly too long, but that’s easier to deal with than the rest of it.

Technically, by the (self-imposed) rules of the project, I’m done for the week; weekends aren’t required. But since I make the rules, something else might happen. If not, though, I’ll be back for the second week of this on Monday 2/8.

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