The Ice Skating Dress
When I was younger, I had gone to a hosiery store. I have played this moment out in my head scores of times over the past couple of months. It started when my mom, my three sisters, and I were at the mall. When we passed the hosiery store front, my sisters and I stopped for a bit to check out the beautiful and colorful leotards and tights outfits in the windows, telling each other which ones we liked and making fun of each other by saying we secretly liked or would look funny wearing this one here or that one there. My sisters knew that skirted leotards were always my favorites when I wore theirs to play in when we were younger, but by this time, I dressed up less often. But, they knew what I liked and we were laughing about it until mom finally broke it up and we continued through the mall. Today, though, I was here to by myself to buy the prettiest leotard I could afford. When the sales girl, who seemed to be no more than nineteen or twenty, asked if she could help me, I looked right into her brown eyes and said, "Yes! I'm looking for a leotard with an attached skirt." She quizzed me with all the usual questions and I gave her honest answers; when I told her it was for myself, her eyes opened wide and a huge smile took over her face as she said "oh wow! This is going to be so much fun." I came prepared wearing panties under my tights, but I wasn't prepared for what we did. She brought three different sizes and each one a different style to get my size right. I am 5'10" tall and weigh almost 160 lbs. I am rather muscular, but we found a size that she said fit me like a glove. Then, the fun began. She had me try on every skirted leotard in my size that they had in stock. I changed tights twice; black with a rear seam and ballet pink. I was there for a few hours looking through rack after rack of colorful leotards, tutu dresses, even catalogs at the counter dressed in the latest one I was trying on while she took care of other customers, all older girls or moms with their daughters. She would say to those who asked or gave that inquisitive look, laugh, or snicker, of which there were plenty, that I was her cousin and we're looking for a costume for Halloween which conveniently was just a few days away. It was one of the most fun and enjoyable days of my life. I eventually bought a plain black long sleeve, mock turtleneck ice skating dress that zipped up the back and had an attached semi shear chiffon two layered ruffled skirt. I also bought the black semi-sheer tights with the rear seams. Connie, the sales clerk, said it reminded her of a sexy cigarette girl. Her honesty, wide open eyes, and huge sly smile sold me. Also, I couldn't refuse to buy it after all her help and especially all the fun and laughing we did. I pulled my pants up over the tights and put my gym shoes on and walked back into the front of the store. Connie asked surprisingly if I was going to wear the outfit home. When I said, "Of course," she was like, "O-M-G, they really do know, don't they (meaning my family and most of the kids in the neighborhood)?" She put my shirt and the tights I wore to the store into a cute plastic bag with the hosiery store name in bold fancy pink script on the sides. I stopped in that store many times after that and Connie and I became good friends. For a while, she would dress up and roller skate with me.
— Tommy, 34