Tuesday, August 31, 2010


I just got back from an unexpected trip to NYC. I was born there and lived there for a decent portion of my formative years.

You know, the ones that define your personality and lifestyle.

While I love Portland, it has never really felt like home. I am reminded of this when I go home and dressing "up" isn't rare but de rigueur. I feel out of place in Portland wearing heels for day, ironing my clothes, never leaving the house without a spot of Jo Malone's "Red Roses" and sporting bright red lips at my 7am meeting.

The fact that I even have a 7am weekly professional meeting makes me feel like a fringe Oregonian.

My plates are limoges, my couch queen anne. I realized last week the family forks I feed my cat wet food with go for $157.00 each on ebay.

I shake hands when I meet people and enjoy a good cheek kiss with friends and family. I swear, banter and have definite opinions. I like tradition. I value manners. I take my meals in courses. And I am embracing all of these things.

I might even go buy a new black wool shift and attend a catholic mass in latin.

All this is distinctly me and quite normal somewhere but seems forced and awkward here.

Like these ridiculous shoes. I love them and they are coming with me to that catholic mass with that new wool shift, my jo malone and flamboyant red lips. I will meet new people and shake their hands; kiss them on the cheek when we are friends. We can eat our meals in courses and say "please & thank you" as we pass our dishes from the left.


Michelle said...

I loved this post. My style is usually out of step with where I'm living, too (or at least the people I hang out with)--the trick I've found is to do it consistently, until suddenly people find it incredibly strange that you should show up somewhere in jeans and a tee shirt.

Erin B. said...

Loved this post nearly more than life this morning! So perfect! I live in the Florida panhandle which makes it basically lower Alabama, and culture (even that sweet, slow syrupy brand from Savannah and Charleston) petters out to nothing but red clay, confederate flags and strip club t-shirts down this way. I am perpetually overdressed - and I don't particularly care! :P I also use everything in everyday life, heirloom silver, overly expensive candles, silk napkins... I think every moment is wonderful and should be savored... so why save that bottle of wine for tommorow when you could light taper candles in crystal candlesticks at dinner and enjoy it today... on a tuesday... just the two of you... I love it! :)

Anonymous said...

Loved your post. Could say all the same things about myself living in San Francisco. I moved from NYC 3 years ago and there are days I look around and wonder what am I doing here? I was once given a lecture from someone in SF on being dressed up. My retort was I made no apologies for not looking like I was just pulled from a drain. East coast through and through. Thank you again for sharing. Made my day. xo

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