"Guidance counselor, real floozy and a maneater, wears creepy brooches like the kind my Nana was buried in." - Sue Sylvester
Brief Check in:
High point of the week:
Discovery of Mini-Rachel Berry's sweater in the toddlers' section at Target.
Low point of the week:
Flash of consideration as to whether I could fit into a size 5T. KATHLEENMINDFAIL.
And now back to business.
If you're anything at all like me (a predicament for which I'd like to express my deepest empathy), you've probably invested a great deal of your emotional and mental energy into hypothetical situations incorporating various fictional characters. And if you're also as avid a WWEPWer, you've probably thought, "Hey Ryan Murphy, we need an entire Glee episode dedicated to an Emma Pillsbury shopping excursion. Because frankly, who among us has not literally burst into song in the middle of an Anthropologie when overcome with joy? Who?"
Murphy, I need an entire SERIES dedicated to Emma Pillsbury shopping excursions. And people, don't even try and tell me that she sits there primly clicking and browsing through the online Kate Spade catalog all day when there are children aching to be psychologically healed and dentists popping in at the most inconvenient of times (I hate the pop in!).
Exploring the origins of the Pillsbury jewelry collection entails the inevitable casting of Creepy Nana Pillsbury.
*BFF points to anyone who can name Creepy Nana #1.
I am proud to have my own Creepy Nana (less creepy, more awesome) who supplies me with fabulous jewelry. This 79-year-old has the remarkable talent of sniffing out any 50 cent yard sale sweater guard in the state of Tennessee.
For a visual, just imagine a strong-boned, apron-clad elderly woman intermittently forking gigantic sweaty pieces of fried ham onto my already full dinner plate while consistently asking me why I'm not wearing pants, and then shaking her head in disbelief that there are people who READ about me not wearing pants.
My grandmother and I like to blitzkrieg the antique stores of a town square and haggle our way to Pillsbury victory. But the flea market trips are truly the best. One Saturday a month, at 7 am, I am jerked up out of my pleasant sitcom-inspired dreams by the blaring of a car horn in the driveway. And before you can say "Dalton Academy Warblers" three times fast, I'm in Middle of Nowhere, Alabama, winding my way through a sea of mullets in search of a WWEPW-worthy treasure. I might find a telephone brooch hidden underneath a pre-owned toilet seat made out of half-dollars (hence the needed hand-sanitizer in the purse, or purchase some enamel flower earrings from that lady with the leashed billy goat that anchors her reconstructed Hoveround.
The days I don't find anything are still worth it, because my grandmother and I have found something special we can share. She is truly the lieutenant of my Emma Pillsbury Army of Champions. And as I gather my own stories, I wonder what hardships that Emma P's most famous pieces have encountered on the long and arduous road to Lima.
Cue flashback harp strumming as we look into our fashion crystal ball.
Scenario A) Manhattan, 1960 - A disillusioned secretary at Sterling Cooper flings her brooch out the window of the 37th floor where it is discovered by a much younger and more attractive Creepy Nana Pillsbury.
Scenario B) Oklahoma Territory, 1906 - A Persian peddler man sells jewelry to Great-Great Grandma Pillsbury who, in a brief moment of mindless flirtation, forgets her Missouri-bound fiance, the aptly named Will.
Don't get me wrong. Etsy and Ebay are really fabulous. But it doesn't hurt to get a little fresh air and maybe make a new friend in the process. If you don't have a Creepy Nana or your Nana's wardrobe is dictated by whatever clothing escapees are leftover at the laundromat, strike up a conversation with the owner of an antique store or a flea market stand. It can be a lonely profession, and having a little chat with someone under the age of 65 who's looking for classic jewelry might really make their day. Hey, if you're super cute, they might even adopt you and give you freebies!
All I know is that you've got to build your Army of Champions one Creepy Nana at a time. So bat those bush baby eyes of yours and start winning them over.