Recently, I was talking with my friend, poet Jane Springer, who was sitting on her porch, smoking cigarettes and reading some of Keats's letters. She said of the things she loves about him, she loves that when he was depressed, he would get dressed up to make himself feel better.
Oh, I said. Yeah. I totally get that.
Oh, you would, Jane said.
I have a lot of wake up or stay up and write in pajamas writer friends. I am not one of them.
I need to have things in order. A shower. Open blinds and windows. A neat workspace. And yes, good pants.
I'm walking a fine line here. It's a very tipsy point I'm balanced in. On a particularly depressed or anxious day, I'm probably more likely to put on full make-up. Eyeliner and all. Or fancy shoes. It's the same reason I need to have the blinds open, and the bed made. It's an indication of normalcy.
My dad never wore jeans. He was always dressed, usually in dress pants, until he got more immobile and succumbed to sweat pants for comfort and because they were easier to put on. And he always wore shoes. He would not take his shoes off while he was home. Why? Because having your shoes off is an indication that something isn't normal. That you're home sick. A day with shoes on is a regular day, a work day, a day to do something (even if you don't). A day without shoes, you might as well give up on.
I'm not saying this isn't crazy. But it's what goes on inside my head.
That said, I'm going to put on some gabardine and get to work.