So today I did something I’ve been meaning to do for awhile, threw on the Boots of Doom and the standard black tank top and hit Goodwill to go skirt shopping.

I love Goodwill these days, since I’m bloody sick of buying a new wardrobe every three months, and it has the added advantage that if you buy something, the worst case scenario is that you get it home, look in the mirror, go “What in the name of GOD was I thinking?” and you’re out all of three bucks, which you donated to charity anyway.

Plus there’s the sheer entertainment value of seeing some truly hideous clothing on the rack and going “SWEET GOD, WHAT IS THIS ABOMINATION!?” And occasionally trying it on anyway.

The downside, of course, is that the clothing has often had the tag laundered so many times that you can no longer tell what size it is or what the care instructions are. I am very cavalier about care instructions–everything basically gets machine wash cold and tumble dry low, unless stated otherwise–but sizes are nice to know. (Although you can then ignore them half the time, because the usual problem of women’s clothes sizing is about fifty times worse at a thrift store, where everything can be presumed to have stretched or shrunk or on rare occasions, both simultaneously. The size 1 skirt fit rather well, the size 6 did not.) Otherwise you find yourself trying to wedge yourself into something that gets halfway up the thighs and is suddenly laughably tight, and that you must now reverse the process, a situation made in no way easier if you happen to be wearing knee-high boots with double rows of spikes on them at the time.

Even this, however, is preferable to the False Hope Scenario, where you get the thing up and buttoned and discover that no, it’s definitely too small, not just cut close, and you now look like a plaid sausage with a rather goth label, or–increasingly often, these days–that it’s too large and if you take a single step outside, the skirt will slither off your hips and fall gracefully to the floor, much to the amusement of anyone in the vicinity.

And the dressing rooms are poorly lit and the doors generally don’t lock worth a damn, so you find yourself hanging onto the handle and yelling “Occupied!” every few minutes. (This can be particularly exciting when combined with the above, and you find yourself hobbled together at the knees, clinging to the doorknob, wondering why the hell you wore a thong today anyway.)

But shit, where else can you get a half-dozen skirts for $25?

Given my unexpected but apparently pronounced fondness for tartan, I look rather like a Catholic schoolgirl, although between the boots and the tattoos, the effect is less “naughty” and more “may have done time for knocking over a convenience store,” but undoubtedly that’s somebody’s fantasy somewhere, so I’m not really inclined to complain.

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