Sunday, September 02, 2007

"Welcome to the World of Men"

Geoff hasn't worn anything close to formal since uncle John's funeral in July of 2006. At that time, he had a size 16 pant and shirt, and size five shoes.

He's grown a foot or so since then and put on a great deal of weight and height. Doug was shocked yesterday when Geoff and I were standing in the living room talking about something, face to face, and Geoff's 5' 3" is awfully close to my 5' 7".

None of his clothes fit him anymore, so we figured he needed a suit for the wedding or at least a sports coat and dress pants and shirt. And, he needs new shoes because he's gone from a size 6 to a size 8 in just a couple of months. I lie not.

Doug has had one sports coat since 2001 (we are a casual dress family, I tells ya) so he figured he'd get something more suitable for the wedding and for general work, presentations and conferences and the like.

Yesterday we went down to Syms and went shopping. I picked out a suit for Geoff, the jacket fit but the pants were too tight. If he was just 5 pounds lighter or a little more fit around the belly, this would have been an off the rack purchase. We realized this was the LAST size in boys' clothing... and he'd have to step up to the next level.

Welcome to The World Of Men, young one.

Syms is incredibly old school. There are men and women wandering the aisle with measuring tape. Some of the men are old Italian types with hairpieces and strange suits that I rarely see the likes of anymore. They have worked there for years and years. In fact, the guy who helped us was there the last time Doug bought a suit, which was for an interview over 10 years ago.

The tailor measured Geoff and confirmed my fears that he no longer could fit into clothing from the boys' section. I was directed to the section where waist size-based pants are. He told me to pick out "short rise" pants. I guess when you have the width of a men's medium, but not the height, you go to Short Rise pants.

Regular pants in his size range would come up to his armpits, and that would be uncool.

Together, he and I picked out a pair of "slacks," matched it to a blue blazer and white dress shirt, and returned to the tailor.

Geoff stood on the riser and had the tailor mark off the 5 inches of pants that would have to come off so he could get a good fit. The inseam needed to be adjusted too, even with the Short Rise... it was quite comical. The tailor was really nice, and very patient with Geoff, who was completely confused by why he had to go through all of this.

Doug picked out a really nice suit, shirt, and a blazer, and was measured and chalked himself for adjustments. Geoff sat and watched and I told him that with fancy clothes, and sometimes even normal clothes, one must go through this process.

We then picked out a bunch of semi-dressy shirts to wear to school and just in general. He likes to wear button-down shirts to school once in a while, and so I want to encourage that. The shirts I got him were $58 dollar Nautica shirts marked down to $11 for the end of summer clear out. I may have to go back and pick him up a bunch more. Damn. Can't beat that.

I need to do a major clothing purge for Geoff and pitch everything that is too small so he'll stop wearing it. I take things and say "That's too small for you, you've been wearing that since first grade" and he gets all pissed. "That's my FAVORITE shirt!!!" geoff and nickEverything is a favorite. Every damn thing. So... I take things and he finds them and puts them back in his room. Days later he comes out with that soccer shirt that he wore the first year he played soccer... and I groan "Dear GOD why is he doing this to me!!!"

To put things in perspective. Here is a photo.

This is Geoff with his buddy Nick. Nick and Geoff are in Cub Scouts together, in the same grade, in the same class. One could say Geoff is huge. One could say Nick is tiny. One would be right on both accounts. Nick is pretty much the smallest kid in the class, and Geoff is one of the tallest and heaviest. Between these two is "normal" or "average." Boys who are 10 and aren't 5' 3" and 150 pounds. Boys who are 10 and aren't 4' 5" and 59 pounds.

Nick will be getting a huge bag of Geoff's clothes this week, if he wants them. I think he'll look great in the three Hawaiian shirts and the awesome long sleeve cotton jerseys Geoff has been wearing for a while, that just simply stopped fitting at the beginning of the summer.

I haven't had to do a pitch in a long time. I deliberately bought clothing for the past couple of years that he'd have to grow into. When he was in 2nd grade, I bought things that have lasted him up through this summer and now they've just stopped. Geoff hit that size wall and is done over there... so he got a good run out of a number of things. And I'm glad.

Just hope I don't have to do the purge again in 6 months.

August slipped away and now we are in September. The kids are back in school, life is starting to stabilize with schedules and expectations, and the groove of academic year 2007-8 is underway. A lot of area schools start the day after Labor Day but for some reason our district starts a full week before that. They had three days of school so far, and already Jess is bored and longing for her Shakespeare friends. Geoff is worried that his teacher, who also was his fourth grade teacher but came up a grade with her class due to needs at that grade level, is only going to teach him fourth grade materials. I think already she has shown him that is not true.

We are getting the house ready for next Sunday's arrival of the GES (attentive readers know what GES means...). She will be here next Sunday night and on Monday morning will head to school with Jessica. I am going to see if she wants to make a guest visit to Geoff's class if that's okay with his teacher. They may be interested in a visit from someone who lives away.

Yesterday Doug did a lot of cleaning in the kitchen and downstairs bath, and I cleaned the study, which is where Jess will be sleeping while the GES is here. Jess has a cold and hasn't done a thing with cleaning her room so I have to ride her ass on that. Geoff's room, which was pristine for 10 minutes a month ago, is now a total disaster again so I've got to tackle that.

We have to clean the dining room, living room and the pink room where the Nintendo is, upstairs bath, and each of the bedrooms... and then we'll have a nice clean house. Just in time for our visitor. Yay. I'm glad I have next Saturday to work on it too, before she comes.

Right then. We're heading out to picnic up in the mountains of New Hampshire, near Peterborough I think... Doug planned this out for us and we're getting ready to go now... at least one of our three days off this Labor Day weekend will be filled with some outdoor excursionness.

More later.

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