A number of circumstances, both professional and personal, are conspiring of late to make me dream of alternatives to my academic life. As I’ve only just achieved an element of professional stability, however, my alternative-life fantasies remain exactly that: fantastic – and (currently) impossible.
Most Alternative-Life-A-Dubses have spectacular wardrobes. For example, in another place, not here, I own a tiny-but-posh studio space on a fancy Caribbean island. I rent the studio for exorbitant fees to a parade of designers of beautiful clothing who sometimes pay me with clothes.
When Caribbean-Island-Alterna-Dubs is not committing Dionne Brand novels to memory, doing yoga cliffside, or frolicking in shady groves with my flock of wheaten terriers, Fantasy-Me mostly hangs out in flowing silk dresses, and sparkly sandals. Then I drink champagne, and decide what deserving charitable enterprises most deserve portions of my millions.
Sometimes I wear long drapey numbers like this (because Fantasy Me has naturally golden brown skin, even in winter). Obviously, I wear such things with strappy silver flats, not those clunky black things. This one’s perfect for standing by the ocean while the wind blows my gorgeous mane of hair around and hot nubile young men plan ways to pick me up:
(But, I never do that blue eyeshadow. Never.)
Other nights call for a steamy petal dress like this one by Loris Diran. Those shoes are all wrong, of course. Gold sandals with paper-thin ankle straps are really a better fit for my glamorous island paradise. This one’s perfect for sitting in profile while the sun sets over the ocean and I decide which nubile young men I’ll take salsa (or lambada) dancing later:
Ah, sweet fantasy life and wardrobe – all in another (maybe pretend) place, not here! Not here where my jersey is so rarely (alright, never) silk, my golden sandals lose their precious heels, and where negotiating for office spaces, futzing with muffed pay (always too low – why? Why?), and placing my one broken wheaten leaves precious little time for Brand novels or yoga in the place down the street where they drape orange fabric through the fluorescent lights.
Needless to say, I’ll not be buying either of the above dresses. Or the posh studio by the sea. Also, neither Gucci nor Loris Diran will be compensating me for not buying their clothes.
* This phrase is the title of my fantasy-BFF Dionne Brand’s first novel. And I borrow it – and use it out of context – with awe and reverence.
What’s does your fantasy-alternative self do? Does s/he have great clothes?