It seems Kate is turning over a new leaf.
Lately, my three year old is a little less “hot mess” and more…more…well, feminine. I can’t say she’s been entirely ladylike, though there have been glimmers of a burgeoning Fashionista. But there’s also this other feminine personality making its existence known. It only comes out when Kate wears her hot pink cowgirl boots from Target. Hot pink cowgirl boots paired with a denim mini and whatever dance music is being piped into Victoria’s Secret on a random Monday afternoon.
Maybe it was the bordello-ish atmosphere of Victoria’s Secret that got her all riled up. Those hot pink painted walls and plastic boobies covered in lace demi-bras. Nary a man in site except for that one little blonde boy in a striped shirt who growled at everyone he passed. My girls stopped, turned, and stared at him in horror, their expressions indicating his kind wasn’t welcome there in Pinkville.
I maneuvered past a mannequin wearing a marabou covered thong which was covering the mannequin’s plastic vag, then looked back to see Gwen and Kate petting it. “Ooooh, this is soft Mommy!” Gwen said. “You should buy it.”
“I wanna touch it Gwen!” Kate hollered, stomping her tacky boot-clad foot on the floor. With a dramatic roll of her eyes, Gwen stepped aside and let Kate have at it. First, Kate rubbed the marabou covered mannequin crotch, then stepped forward and pressed her check against it. Her eyes closed and her tiny lips broke into a smile, “It’s so tickly,” she breathed.
Now, I imagine that most mommies would have tactfully steered their daughters away from the marabou crotch, but I stood there watching in a mix of amusement and horror and said nothing. It was like I was hypnotized by the whole scene and all I could think was, “Why the fuck do they put the cotton mommy panties all the way at the back of the goddamn store?”
Personally, my friends and I think it’s because VS doesn’t want those of us who have aged out of the whole “Pink” line lurking near the front of the store. We’d be holding up cotton panties for size while our children patted the mannequin crotches. Not sexy. Also, it serves as a public service announcement of sorts – this is your future high school girl!
You see, first forays in Victoria’s Secret entail thongs and cute little nighties. Maybe a pair of shorts boldly emblazoned with the word “Pink” across the ass – suggesting to the world, “Hey, fresh meat over here! Come and get me you dirty old men!”
Next, having secured boyfriends and fiancé’s and husbands, we move into the edgier goods VS has to offer. Things like that marabou thong and crotchless panties.
Finally, thanks to the marabou thongs and crotchless panties, we wind up with three kids, frizzy hair and the need for underwear that doesn’t get lost in the girth of our post-pregnancy asses. Thus, we have subtly and unwittingly been relocated to the rear of the store to make room for the next crop of breeders.
I quickly moved to the table holding the 5 for $25 mom skivvies and began digging for ones that don’t say anything like, “Boyfriends are Recyclable” or “Pure Pink” or “Pink University.” I wondered why they don’t capitalize on the mom set and start some new sayings like, “Pink Playdates” or “Drink Pink Wine” or “Not So Pink Anymore.”
Lost in my reverie and piles of Cheeky underwear, I slowly realized the other women where nudging each other and giggling at something over my shoulder. Of course, I initially thought they were laughing at me, because I’m a self-absorbed neurotic who thinks the whole world is out to get me. Then I realized they were looking past me, at something closer to the floor.
And so it was that I turned and saw Kate in the midst of a very funny, albeit oddly sexual dance. Her brown bobbed hair pulled back in a tiny flower barrette, her eyes filled with confidence and her lips pressed into a saucy pout, she ran her little hands down her Hello Kitty t-shirt and onto her denim mini. With her right hip jutting out, she moved her leg to the beat of the erotic-sounding music – was that breathy a French woman singing or just Luann from Real Housewives? Kate’s arms slowly rose back above her head and she launched into a spicy little pirouette before starting her spontaneous set of moves again.
Gwen and I looked at one another and tried not to laugh. Clearly, Kate was serious about the artistic nature of her dance. To interrupt with laughter could only serve to squelch a future career in dance. Besides, all it generally takes to stop a three-year-old from a public display of lewd talent is to say, “Wow, Kate that is a beautiful dance!”
So I let her go for a few seconds and pondered whether or not I had time to whip out my cell phone and record a video. I couldn’t. I was too entertained to break the spell. Kate was lost in a sensual dance of self-expression. A slightly alarming dance for a three year old and one that nearly called for a pole and some singles, but a dance nonetheless.
Finally, she snapped back to present and noticed the gaggle of women who’d stopped to watch the show. Rather than running off to hide, Kate stood her ground and cast a hairy eyeball upon her audience. She placed her hands on her hips, one still jutting out at a dangerous angle while her leg kept the beat of the music. I was reminded of Jodi Foster’s character in The Accused, so I promptly said, “Nice dance, Kate. Let’s go pay,” and ushered her toward the counter.
So it seems that VS is already grooming my little girls. On Monday, we walked in and each one scanned the interior with sparkling eyes and a slackened jaw. It really is a little girl’s dream. Pink walls, oodles of makeup, perfume, and “pretty clothes.” I was forced to take a step back and have a look through their eyes. Then I vowed to never bring them back to that place again. From now on, I will make a show of purchasing my underwear from Target. The ones that are white and cotton and come neatly rolled up in a transparent plastic bag. Functional and decidedly un-sexy. Plus, no stripper dances are required to purchase.