London Calling

Allow me to introduce you to my new, old loves. I have had a crush on knee-high, lace-up Doc Martens boots since I was a teenager. It was mostly a secret, unrequited longing, however. I was not a particularly edgy youth. I certainly wouldn’t have qualified as punk.  I was a “good girl.” I kept curfew. I cleaned my room. My mother used to say she wished she had ten of me.

She didn’t know back then about the four packs of Bartles & Jaymes wine coolers I would drink with Sue McNeil in the back of our friend Frank’s red T-1000, listening to Def Leppard’s Pyromania on cassette. What a  rebel.

"Thank you for your support."

So, yeah. I probably would have looked a little ridiculous wearing these awesome icons of angst back then. I did eventually get a pair of the classic oxfords in cool funky green, but that was after I had already gotten a divorce. And a tattoo.  And become, apparently, a walking cliche.

And now, here I am, twenty years later, struggling happily to pull the laces through 20 eyes, marveling at how comfy they are, imagining how they will look with the black and blue babydoll dress I just picked up at Goodwill, and wondering if I will actually be brave enough to wear them into the classroom.

And, honestly, also worrying that I have just walked into the Next Great Cliche: Mother at Midlife, trying to hold on to youth, to a hipness she never really had.

Do I look silly? Maybe. But here’s another question: do I care?

I don’t think I do.  Maybe a little silly is exactly what I need as a 40 year old mother of young kids.  Maybe it’s what I need to keep my spirits up in this awful job market. In the face of all the rotten crap going on in the world.

Or maybe, instead, I’m just a little bit fierce here in my 40s. Maybe I earned these kick ass boots and it’s only now that I’ve lived through my 20s and 30s that I have the experience and attitude needed to wear them–to “rock them,” as my friend Carla says.

Yep. Silly and fierce. That’s me.

Think I’ll keep ’em.


"Sheila take a, Sheila take a bow. Boot the grime of this world, in the crotch, dear."

Bartles & Jaymes image courtesy of

One thought on “London Calling

  1. Catherine says:

    OMG, too funny. I remember drinking Bartles & Jaymes in a monte carlo at 16 listening to Def Leppard. I mean, wow, was Bartles & Jaymes marketed to 16 year old girls in the 80’s? Yup.

    thanks for sharing.

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