14 January 2007

More than just Sunday morning entertainment

Sunday morning Encore Channel movies have served as backdrops to some of my most important fashion revelations. "Pretty Woman," "Match Point" and "The Devil Wears Prada" were predictable influences. "Road House," "Out for Justice" and "Mommy Dearest," less so.

This morning it was "Out of Sight."

Truly one of God's greatest cinematic gifts - and by far Steven Soderbergh's best film - "Out of Sight" is clever, its characters tightly written, and thanks to its good looks and good music (a jarring contrast to its bleak Detroit setting), it's sexy from minute 1 right through minute 123. And though I've seen it more times than I can count, I only realized this morning that it, too, has a way of articulating style wisdom I could never have done on my own.

In the scene pictured above, Jack says to Karen (while sipping her double Bourbon):

"It's like seeing a person you never saw before - you could be passing on the street - you look at each other, and for a few seconds, there's a kind of recognition, like you both know something. But then the next moment the person's gone, and it's too late to do anything about it, but you remember it because it was right there and you let it go, and you think, 'What if I had stopped and said something?' It might happen only a few times in your life."

Looking down at her hands and then back up at him, she replies, "Or once."

"Or once" is right. So right. And that's why when you see it - that dress, that pair of heels, that this-price-can't-be-right handbag - you buy it and eliminate forever those inevitable, painful thoughts of someone else enjoying what should have been yours.

Don't misunderstand, I'm not promoting that a mid-level analyst should go into credit card debt just so she can own that price-upon-request coral-hued Thakoon evening gown with skinny black waist-cinch and rosette sleeves she saw in the new issue of Marie Claire and then scoured the Internet all morning like a dressophile to find a picture of.

Not at all.

But what I am advocating is that when you see something you need, something you've been coveting, or just something you fall in love with the moment you see it, and it's in a within-your-budget price point, get it. Don't hem, don't haw, pick it up and make it yours.

Too big? If it's within a reasonable distance from where you currently are, get it and take it to a tailor you trust who recognizes this isn't an everyday request but rather a plea to save the life of a loved one.

Too small? If it's within a reasonable distance from where you currently are, get it and work out one more day a week, do elevator squats, stop getting bread with your soup, do whatever it takes to make it work.

As impossible as you may think it is to find a person with whom you share "Wild Orchid" chemistry and "Waiting for Guffman" silliness, it's equally rare, I've found, to stumble across those perfect wardrobe additions at prices you can afford.

In either case, you can't just sit idly by.

(insert obvious "Pretty Woman" allusion here)


Anonymous said...

Yes once.

Johanna said...

And it was mother'effing amazing.