Wednesday, May 11, 2011

BELTANE to MEMORIAL DAY countdown: On Tank Tops, and Existential Dread

There are moments when I suddenly realize that I have been living in New York for a long-ass time/ I am getting old. Usually, it happens when I am suddenly reminded of something or someplace that used to exist, or that I "always used to" do or go to. Then I realize that that place or thing hasn't existed for at least three years, and that I used to go there or do that "all the time" five or six years ago. Then I begin to wonder how the hell it is even possible that I have been sucked in to the k-hole that is New York City for going on seven years now, my twenties are almost over.....and cue the existential crisis.

What, you might wonder, does existential dread have to do with tank tops, and where this all going? Well, my next tank on the countdown, my #11 TOP TANK TOP, a blue chambray tie waist cropped button down sleeveless top with jumbo notched collar, triggered such an episode upon recently rediscovering it. But first, the top:

For such a tiny piece of clothing, there is a lot of action happening here. Just look how long and rambling my description of it is, to include all of it's fabulous features? To recap; it's light blue chambray, which is, if I had a segment to categorize such suitable commonplace phenomenon, a good thing. It is cropped with a tie waste, which is retro to about 3 different decades (I would argue, 60's, 70's, and 80's at least), and best of all, has a giant floppy notched collar. Moving on to existential dread.

When I recently rediscovered this piece, I realized that I got it at the Avenue A flea market in the East Village what must have been about 4 years ago. The Avenue A flea market was this adorable little flea market in a church parking lot that was pretty affordable and always entertaining. My boyfriend and I would often go before or after weekend brunch and see what we could find. I scored this top for a mere $1 from my favorite vendor there, a sketchy setup, were a few guys would dump a huge pile of clothes on a couple of folding tables, many of which were from Urban Outfitters, and charge $1 a piece no matter what it was. I would often buy a bunch of the Urban stuff and resell it to Beacon's Closet for a profit, because I hustle like that.

Now, the crisis part comes when, as I hear myself explaining this scenario, it sounds so old-timey New York that I can hardly believe I lived it. I mean, come on, $1 clothes? At a flea market? In Manhattan? If anyone has been to that hell hole they call a flea market by all the half-empty Williamsburg condos, they will agree that this seems utterly impossible. But I lived it.

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