Shopping Isn’t Fun Again… Yet.

As you can imagine, losing the weight equivalent of the world’s largest ball of tape in less than 4 months can do a real number on your closet game. With that being my predicament, my wife and I went interim clothes shopping this weekend.

It hasn’t become fun again yet.

Though I Jedi-mind-fucked myself to believe that ALL clothes were built small before, I’ve getting somewhat of a vindication of those feelings now. Fashion has become a slim person’s business, it seems. Skinny jeans are a thing, skinny ties are in and slim fit shirts populate every major retailer.

These clown motherfuckers who like to sag even do so with skinny jeans nowadays. On some, bruh-your-pants-don’t-fit-looking-ass shit.

While I am able to finally fit most XXL shirts now and 40-42ish pants, those sizes are so hard to come by in some stores. For instance, one of my goal stores, H&M seemed to have an abundance of XS shirts but not a huge selection of XL or larger.

I remember when XS wasn’t even a thing. An adult XS was once classified as a child’s XL. A 36 inch chest used to be a medium in an adult size; now it’s considered large when in REALITY, it’s small for the majority of people in this country. Let’s not get started on pants… there are 5th GRADERS out there in size 34 pants, why is there more of that size in the stores than a 36-40? According to a 2010 study, the average waist size of an adult male is 39.7 inches. So, a size 40 waist. Yet in niche stores like my beloved H&M a 38 may be the highest size you can find.

Damn near 70% of all Americans are obese. If 70 % of the country isn’t wearing smalls or mediums, I’m baffled to why retailers choose to sell to 30% of the population. Granted the medical definition of obese doesn’t mean EVERYBODY is size 38 and above, but I’m willing to believe there are more big mofos who are 38+ in the United States there are folks <38.

Its bullshit, really; its also likely one of the reasons why retailers are struggling in shopping malls. People like to blame Internet shopping and that is partially correct; at the same time, however look at what the stores are doing online vs. what they aren’t in malls.

Let’s take JC Penney & Macy’s for example, who recently shuttered dozens or stores due to low sales. Back in the day, Macy’s and JC Penney were staples of every major mall in the county. They also appealed to the fashion senses of a diverse set of people. 

Ironically, a shot from today at Macy’s; Size 40!

Big men could find their sizes in intertwined within the general population of clothing. So if you wanted to get that FUBU shirt in a medium, it was there. At the same time you could grab an XXXL off the same rack with no issues. Same with sports gear. Jerseys would start typically at a Medium and go up to 4XL on the same rack. If that medium Magic jersey was too big, a children’s XL Magic Johnson jersey would be just fine.

When department stores separated clothing, isolating certain sizes, shopping became a task.

Since larger sizes were no longer considered mainstream, despite our country’s average size, the fashion industry seemingly gave up on marketing to that crowd for in-store campaigns.

Big and Tall clothing for men grew to be a corner of the store filled with polo shirts with choice of with or without spandex on the sleeve and waistline, t shirts with phrases about how big your belly was; stupid beer jokes and fishing and island themed button up shirts that could only be classified as the male equivalent of a moo-moo.

Van Huesen makes a fine dress shirt but some of their casual gear is horrendous! I’m pretty sure those are fishing lures.
I call the Big and Tall sections of these stores the Big and Ugly sections. You take away all the fashionable shit for larger people and give them garbage like that to wear and you wonder why people walk around with low self-esteem?

With major retailers it seems like they have more fashionable clothing in larger sizes online than in stores. It feels like a punishment, to be honest. You already have to understandably pay a higher cost for the larger clothes themselves but in most cases you would have to pay for shipping. If the clothes don’t fit, most retailers won’t pay for the return shipping. Thankfully they will accept them in-store (if they have a store), that is.

As a once larger man, I liked to try on everything I purchased. When shopping online you lose that ability, so in most cases I would buy at an even higher size than required just to play it safe. Depending on what you are purchasing though, a much larger size doesn’t help you, fashion wise.

UGH. Anyway, this rant is over. I know there are others who feel my pain though, especially in this new age of size shade that is thrown by retailers.

My saving grace is that these inches are dropping on the regular and I’ll be in a 38 probably by my birthday.

After this weekend I just said fuck it – I’m just going to deal with the variety of size 42-46 pants in my closet until then. I’ll just tighten my belt at work. In the meantime, I’ll spend my shopping budget on sneakers, gym clothes and jerseys. Those items never fail me.

I’m hoping that when I get to that size 38 shopping will be fun again.

Size 40… I’ll take it! No longer the largest size in the store!
Food, glorious food adventures!

I think I may have gotten my first post-op buzz. My wife and I went to La Salsa Cantina inside of the Miracle Mile Shops at Planet Hollywood last night. We ordered steak nachos (another first) and a house margarita, which of course, everything was shared.

We got our drink right away but didn’t expect the plate of nachos to come out so fast. With only a sip of margarita in my system, I stopped drinking, per post op protocol of not drinking and eating and ate. I managed to get down 7 chips before tapping out.

I refrained from drinking anything for the next 25 minutes or so but felt super dry, so I went in on the margarita. Mind you, the fullness had not passed quite yet; the food just chillin’ there in my pouch. So I took a couple sips of the alcohol and we began walking… a few moments later I got that feeling I hadn’t had in a while. I was hot and a little tipsy. Like, where I had to sit down to gather myself for a minute tipsy. I actually threw the rest of the drink away at that point. (My wife doesn’t really drink much.)

I think that since I was full, the alcohol was blocked from digestion right away, so it absorbed as part of my nutrients causing my partial drunkenness.  It only lasted a half hour as it faded as we continued to walk through the mall. The worst part of the ordeal was actually wasting alcohol, which is a party foul of epic proportions.

Please don’t tell my former Justice League crew. LOL

Next time on Showtorious Unplugged:

I plan on speaking about bullshit factor of everything I learned with bariatric surgery. While all information sounds great in a professionally published pamphlet, there is always a level of bullshit that can be debunked by good old fashioned experience. Obviously my experiences may not apply to everyone but I’m going to share some things from it anyway.

I may also try my hand at a podcast with fellow post-op patient and friend, Lea. She’s also got a decent mouthpiece on her so it should be a fun recording.  Till then, or not I am me, -82 pounds as of today.


Update: I wrote the body of this entry at work… sprinkled in are a few pictures from after work. I not only got into a firm size 40 jean, I got into an XLT button up shirt! Okay, so JUST MAYBE shopping is getting  a little fun again!



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