Kids these days

DISCLAIMER: I am going to use the word “labia” at some point in this post, and if that offends you, you should probably run away screaming right now. Save yourself.

Last weekend, I made my annual pilgrimage to my alma mater, a liberal arts college in the southern Ohio area. It is famous for its Halloween party. Perhaps you’ve heard of it.

Every year up until this year, I have felt like I still fit in there. My favorite restaurant is still there, and it’s still the coolest place to hear live music and get a pretty kickass margarita. My favorite bar is right across the street. And when I’m in both places, it evokes such strong feelings of home. Like, no matter what, this will always be my place and it will always welcome me back.

However.

I’m almost 40 now, just a few short months until I can officially wear the crown. And although I felt right at home in my restaurant and my bar, every step I took outside of those establishments just made me feel old, unhip, unpretty, and radically overdressed.

Let me just state that it was the full-fledged 90’s when I was in college. Grunge was in – or at least my friends and I thought so. It was not uncommon for me to LEAVE THE HOUSE wearing jeans a couple sizes too big for me, as well as a flannel that more than generously fit. Under that, I would be wearing a t-shirt emblazoned with some icon of pop culture from the 70’s such as Speed Racer, or Scooby Doo and the gang. Yes, that was my “going out” ensemble, and I wondered why no guys wanted to talk to me. Oh – let’s not forget the Doc Martens, because I had two pairs. Your standard black ones, and then I had a more feminine (not really) Mary Jane style of Docs, as well. If I wasn’t wearing those clodhoppers, then I had on my Airwalks (which were trendy at the time).

A couple of the guys I was with this past weekend said that we went to college at the worst time for fashion, and they wished we had looked more like the college girls of today.

Because if you haven’t been to a college campus lately, let me tell you – it basically looks like everyone forgot to wear pants. We were walking behind some girl and her date, who was dressed in the standard college boy “dress up” outfit of khakis and a blue blazer, but she was wearing the top half of a two piece outfit and not the bottom. We could basically see her labia as she walked in front of us. We weren’t trying to look, but it was right there on parade. She wasn’t the only one – many girls wore dresses that just barely covered the butt cheeks. I don’t know if this was a special occasion or if this is how they dress all the time, but it was disturbing.

Then there were the jumpers. These fashion abominations are one-piece outfits that cover basically to the mid butt cheek in a booty shorts type variety, as well as a top part that may or may not button. I saw some girl wearing this apparel, but her top was unbuttoned and her bra was on full display. She looked like a hot mess makeup wise, so I’m not sure how many drinks she’d had by the time we ran into her, but I can’t say for sure whether that had anything to do with why her ta-ta’s were exposed.

This situation, repeated over and over, began to give me a sick feeling about my college town, and about college in general. Because then I had an ultimate “come to Jesus” moment. I was observing the young guys at the bar, not really “checking them out” but just thinking back to being their age and whether or not I would have thought they were cute. One guy was just adorable. And then it hit me – he reminded me of my son. My 10-year-old son, who is closer to this kid in age than I am. Gross. Picturing my son in a few years encountering these girls just really made me shudder.

So, is it time for me to give up my annual tradition of venturing back to my college town? Will I just become more and more disenchanted with what I see? Was this an anomaly and I just happened to be in town for “Dress Like a Hooker” weekend? I don’t know.

What I do know is that I am sad for these women. Feeling the need to put themselves on display … for what? I know I tend to keep things light, but it drives me crazy to think that this is the norm for young girls to dress like this. They’d look just as hot wearing a flannel and overalls, right? OK. Maybe not.

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