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Saturday, March 24, 2018

The Department of Pants

Pant Surprise? Part I

Oh hello!  It was an early spring day, the weather was by no means warm, but there was a nice mildness -- winter was not leaving without a fight, but winter was weakened.  I was at Macy's on 34th Street, perusing the Dockers section, as I am wont to do.  As I have discussed at length in prior filings, Dockers has made a come back in recent years.  They are offering a multitude of fits, and yes, the Classic Fit, for instance, is as awful as you might imagine -- hugely inappropriate width and leg opening measurements.  But call me Christopher Columbus if the Slim Tapered Fit and the Athletic Fit are not respectable trousers!

I have been in a dance all winter, trying on various fits and sizes -- for instance, a 38x32 in Slim Tapered, or maybe a 36x32 in Athletic?  And as if all these combinations between sizes and fits are not complicated enough, although Dockers is making some nice pants, their manufacturing process is extremely inconsistent.  You can try on a Slim Tapered in 38x32 in Olive and try on a second pair of Slim Tapered in 38x32 in Olive and the pants will simply not be the same! Same goes for pants of the same size and fit but different colors, for instance a 38x32 Slim Tapered in Olive and a 38x32 Slim Tapered in Cadet Navy. The various combinations offer a range of sizing and fit which is mind-boggling.  In the parlance of modern consulting, this is both a threat and an opportunity.  For indeed, you may try on a particular pair of Dockers in a particular size and think "good god almighty these will never do!"  But then you can try on a different pair in the same size and think "why I quite enjoy these slacks!"

Hence my need to visit Macy's every week.  Who knows?  One week they might get a shipment of Slate Grey Athletic Fit trousers, in which a perfect 36 inch waist and 32 inch inseam pair lives, but I need to try on all 7 pairs of the 36x32 inch Slate Grey Athletic Fit pants to find the particular version that fits me perfectly.  And just because in there is a perfect fitting 36x32 Slate Grey Athletic Fit pant to find in no way implies there is not a perfect 38x32 Deep Black Slim Tapered pant that is not mine for the taking if I'm willing to try on all 10 pairs to find it.

It is a difficult life, the life of a pant enthusiast.  And I don't even want to go into the looks of scorn I often receive from Macy's employees.  "Yes, please bring me out all 36x34 pairs in British Khaki as quickly as possible, and oh, can you please provide me a list of the inventory at your Flushing, Queens location?"  Sadly many associates at Macy's don't take their profession seriously, although I do know of a few top notch staff members who are happy to assist me with my pant needs.

Anyway, to return to my narrative, it was an early spring day and I was trying on various Dockers while enjoying some wine and fine cheeses, but I just wasn't having much luck on this particular day.  I finally conceded defeat and was walking to the elevators when I noticed a rack of slacks.  "Hm, what do we have here?"  The colors were nice -- there was a nice gray slack and also navy. I approached; I probed.  "Hm, a nice fabric and texture -- is this a bit of stretch I'm noticing? What are these pants!?!?!"

Tune in next time to find out!