Friday, 4 March 2016

Is that an alien in my closet? Scary post.

AAACK!! Slam!! (pant, pant, pant)
That's the sound of me opening my closet then slamming the door shut before I'm sucked in and eaten. And the sound of my relief at living to tell the tale.

Mel Kobayashi of Bag and a Beret, the closet problem
Evidence. EVIDENCE! Partial view of my closet.
Yeah, it's that bad.

It's a common problem, right? Right up there with gross grout and sweat between double-glazed windows the day after the warranty expires. Honestly, if you hear anyone say, "Oh, my closet? My clothes hang like they're in a high-end designer boutique, they don't touch each other, they're colour-coded and sorted by height and weight, and the hangers are padded," that's when it's time to say to the bartender, "Quick, get her another absinthe. This will go viral for sure! I hope my batteries last."

Mel Kobayashi, painting, Bag and a Beret
Voyaging into the closet of the unknown. A painting I did, acrylic on thick paper.

Already I have vacuum-sealed spacebags of clothes hibernating in my storage locker. I peek at the colony from time to time with my crime scene flashlight to make sure they're still breathing behind the padlocked door, resting in their plastic eggs in silent, cold darkness (heaped in tottering towers but the visual wrecks the in-space-nobody-can-hear-you-scream image). And we know how Alien ends, don't we? Those damned tentacles pull us in. And your space ship always breaks down so you can't get away. And then what? Mad bouts of sexless replication that can't be stopped?! There are so many things wrong with that.

Melanie Kobayashi with pod, Bag and a Beret
Pods. PODS!! PODS!! Keep me away from the PODS! Me when I had bleached hair. And a pod in my living room.

Capsule wardrobe? An alien movie by any other name. All those pods. Clothes pods. Space pods. iPods. Sod the pods. Just thinking about it makes me want to put on a mega robo-suit like Ripley* and start whacking stuff around and screaming, "Get away from me, you B*tch Pods!" I'm preemptively exhausted. Let's not even get started on where I'd store a giant robo-suit. Eighties shoulder pads are challenge enough. *Heroine from movie Aliens.

Melanie Kobayashi, prepare to space bag!, Bag and a Beret
YES!! MORE, I say with righteous voice, MORE EVIDENCE. Summer clothing now hibernating in pod abyss.
Sometimes I am giddy with the idea of throwing everything out, O-U-T, out! No more clutter, clenched sphincters, and squinty eyes. Instead, a confounding profound serenity. Like the scent of jeans fresh from the freezer. Clouds would be fluffier. Doritos would be healthier. I'd take up yoga, do downward dogs and sideways cows, and start saying all those namasty things. And drink green fluids with stringy bits. (Well, maybe not.) But I'd definitely cleanse - release the toxins: "Be free, Little Toxies!!" I'd feel great! And I'm sure I'd smell good. And I would be kind. And to celebrate, I'd change out of yoya pants. (sound of screeching brakes)

Mel Kobayashi, Bag and a Beret, shaggy red coat
This is just a boring shot of what I wore today.

Then I think, I should dress like Lyn at Accidental Icon. Yeah! That's what I'll do. If I can't get a simple mind (okay, don't comment on that), at least I can get simple, clean clothing lines. Oooh, all that lovely architecture. Black. White. Purity. I'm sure I can find a few Issey Miyake pieces at the thrift shop on the $5 rack (first gross lie to myself). And I'll just add a little accent or two (second gross lie to myself), like maybe a colourful wrap, plaid platform shoes, psychedelic tights... (sound of screeching brakes)

Sigh.

Mel Kobayashi, Bag and a Beret, shaggy red coat
Linda Blair in The Exorcist can spin her head around and spit green toxins; I can do this. It's uncanny.

Until I can figure this clothes thing out, I'll be wearing extra-long tattered sleeves; I'll create a trend: "Closet Sleeve," the sleeve that was wrested from that dark space, the diabolical place, like that horror movie with chewed bits from Chuckie* hiding in my closet. Well, no, there's no room even for little Chuckie. There no room even for skeletons, which is fine - I keep those in my dishwasher on the rinse cycle anyway.

Thinking about Chuckie gnawing my clothes in the dark, biting my hand, I'm freaking myself out. It's bad enough already. See what I do to make you happy? - happy at my misery?! Hahaha. Look, and now I'm laughing at myself. *In the Hollywood horror movie Child's Play, Chuckie is a heinous boy doll that murders people.

Illustration by O and Melanie Kobayashi, Scary Place
An illustration by O and me. A scary place.
Bartender, quick, another absinthe! Pffft. And chips. No, healthy Doritos. I'm coming down with a viral.

How has your week been? Are you keeping your closet demons at bay? Does your space ship break down at the most inconvenient times?

PS: Thank you for your stellar comments on my last post.

Another PS, Nov 12, 2016: I have linked this up to Not Dressed as Lamb, Saturday Share Linkup, in case you missed this the first time around.





51 comments:

  1. Wonderful! I love your closet; it looks strangely like my own...

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    1. Hahaha. How do you get your hand in to reach for something and back out again without getting it shredded?

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  2. Ha hahahahaha!

    My closet has also taken on a life of its own. I'm scared that one night it will simply assert itself and take over the entire house. I'll get up and there will be clothes in the shower, clothes hung over the toilet, clothes in my fridge, clothes on top of the clothes I have hanging to dry downstairs. It will look like a thrift store vomited all over my house.

    I saw a photo of some of the styles for 2016 Fall and thought to myself, "Damn! they're all copying Melanie!" It was Gucci I think and they truly did look like they'd lifted every idea straight from your Alien closet and calm sideways cow mind. Bastards didn't even acknowledge you.

    bisous
    Suzanne

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    1. Hahaha!! Yeah, my space bags sometimes take me hostage: feed me more, they say, or I'll take down the building. So I keep feeding them and feeding them. It's like that other horror movie - Gremlins?

      Gucci did call me and I said, please, please take away my burden. But from your report it appears he just copied it! It's that sexless replication I was talking about. Thanks for keeping an eye out, Suzanne. Heh.

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  3. Don't you dare throw out any of your clothes. Your closet should be taken apart piece by piece and put into the Smithsonian (like Julia Child's kitchen). Anyway, how about portable racks? Who says clothes have to be squished into a tiny cubicle where no one sees them? Show case them in living room, dining room, kitchen . . .as art!!!!

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    1. I know, it gets so frustrating not being able to see what I have, but I guess I should work on getting filthy rich so I can afford a closet like Iris Apfel. !!! Have you seen that documentary? She also has a warehouse! But overloading is good incentive to purge and recharge I suppose. It's just hard. Thanks for your comment, Marea!

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  4. Hahha!!! I totally do this entire process in my mind every year (generally around Spring) and I always end up removing maybe 1/2 items and then feel terribly sad at the idea that I might have to rid myself of more. People with neat wardrobes are freaks. I can't see how it's possible. There are too many good things out there. I had a phase of only black and white minimal dressing - it lasted a day. XXX

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    1. Exactly! I do purges and there have been a couple of pieces that I sorely miss. Sometime I don't get rid of things because I have lost my fondness but simply because space dictates. Yeah, neat wardrobes mystify me but I have a longing for one. It would have to be a mile long if I don't want my clothes touching. Thanks for your comment, Lally! I'd love to peek in your closet!!

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  5. I'm laughing out loud. No room for skeletons! That's the single best reason to have a closet like yours!!! It's a wonderful post, thank you for it! My closet is also strangely similar looking, and those portable racks are brilliant, but even they don't help all that much. :)

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    1. I do have a portable rack but it is unwieldly and irritating. So it's disassembled in my storage room as well. I agree - they don't seem to help much.
      Bunches of skeletons party in my dishwasher. If my dishes come out looking strange, I know they've had a particularly wild time. Thanks for your comment, Natalia.

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  6. Ummmmmm, did you have too much coffee with your absinthe? Not that there's anything wrong with that. Just wondering.

    Your closet is a whole different species from my closet, so I wouldn't even know what to tell you. I can't imagine you doing all black and white, but you could try all red and fuchsia. And forget those stringy green drinks - you'd have to give up chocolate chip cookies.

    I love the painting! I've been dwelling on that kind of mindscape lately - tiny people against a huge environment. There's something peaceful about it because, let's face it, humans are cray cray!

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    1. Never too much coffee, Val. And I'll take your advice and stick to the cookies!
      Yes, the paintings of big spaces and little things are refreshing. I love them to rinse out my mind. I did that particular one a couple of years ago.
      Thanks for writing!

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  7. Ahrgh, I left an epic comment on my phone earlier and I went into the Data signal blackspot on the train as it was posting and I lost it!!! So here I am again.
    My wardrobe has similar alien properties- I have clothes stuffed in alll sorts of locations that I can find- Pffffft to those designer shop wardrobes- my one is like feeding time at the zoo!
    Oh and it's funny you should post that title because the Teaching assistant who works with my first class this morning came in late because she found a CROW in her daughter's wardrobe. She has no idea how it got in as all the windows were shut!?!??!
    x

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    1. Oh, that's the worst, when a comment is swallowed into the air. Poof. Feeding time at the zoo? Hahaha.
      That is so WEIRD about the crow in the closet. So freeeeeaky!
      Thanks for commenting, Kezzie.

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  8. I have the rails.
    I have bookcases filled with shoes.
    I have an attic full of spacebag pupae.
    I am an enabler to a suit-a-holic and all-round dapper man.
    I did the purging/refining thing and I now have loads of clothes I will never give up. Ever (I don't think that's how its supposed to work).

    Your closet is a sartorial Narnia wonderland of yes.

    I googled Gucci SS2016 and found things like a technical embroidered pant and a flounce ankle pant. No rock star pants. Nice try Gucci.

    Elaine Monkeypaints

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    1. Yeah, Gucci. I looked it up too. I have to say, there are more than a few things there that I wouldn't mind shoving with grand force into my already over-stuffed closet. I'm sure the pieces would be insulted to be handled so forcefully!
      I love the sound of your house, especially shoes in the bookcase. The stories they could tell. Hahaha!
      Thanks for stopping by, Ms Monkeypaints!

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    2. .... nothing would tear me away from Dries Van Noten if we're playing fantasy shopping lol - there's a man who loves a good textile http://tinyurl.com/jjuy9wv

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  9. Oh man, Melanie, I didn't notice (I'm embarrassed to say) that you had one of your paintings in your last post, too. They're absolutely wonderful!!
    I have decluttered, but I tend then to miss stuff. For instance, I sold a bunch of stamp pads at the garage sale last fall, and the other day I needed a dusty pink one to work on a project, and I had sold the exact color I needed. I didn't buy another stamp pad though - I just abandoned the project.
    And I stupidly gave a student a gorgeous Nehru collared purple velvet jacket that I bought when I was 19 and I would never fit in again. I should have just saved it, because I think of it all.the.time.
    Though I did get rid of two chair a few weeks back.

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    1. Yes, it's always the way...the VERY thing you want you find you have given away. Your purple velvet jacket sounds dreamy - maybe someday you'll happen across a similar one. Many of my pieces are mis-sized by I really want to keep them.
      I'm not bad about letting furniture go.
      Thanks for your compliments on my paintings and your feedback.

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  10. I like your paintings Melanie. Interesting to see the more monochrome palette in your paintings, contrasted with the vivid colours of your clothes. With me it's the opposite, more monochrome clothes, bright paintings. All about balance :-). Anyway, the paintings rock...

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    1. I have two very different painting styles: one very subdued; the other very opposite, very big, totally wild. I would like to see your paintings and clothes if you ever post them.
      Thanks for your comment!

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  11. Melanie I forgot to say how much I love your painting from the last post - the girls with the wind lifting their skirts - them gals were surely have a ball! My closet has moments of looking organised, but only for the first day when I've changed over from summer to winter wardrobe. (I don't have room to acknowledge spring/autumn.) Thereafter, the clothes seem to party in my absence and I can never find a blooming thing where I think it ought to be. De-junking is on my agenda this year, but already it's March and all I've done is throw more clothes on top of the clothes on top of the bed in the spare room. I say the bed, but it's three years since my son left home and no bed has been apparent since then.
    Anna

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    1. I should have had children so I can use their bedrooms for storage. What was I thinking?!!! Hahaha.
      I get those little moments of respite as well. Fleeting, fleeting at best. As you say, seasons out of sight cease to exist.
      Thanks for stopping by, Anna.

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  12. I love the grumpy little face peeking out from amongst the sleeves in your closet. Let me out!!! Jeans fresh from the freezer. That's a good one! I love your disembodied head. And another one of your wonderful paintings and an O collaboration with bunny. Your closet is a dreamy dream. This is like "Melanie Through The Looking Glass."

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    1. That's my favourite part of the photo, the little angry girl. "Whaddaya mean wise guy, putting me in here with all these muppet freaks?"
      Always a joy to get your comments, Connie!

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  13. Orange is the new black, in a very different way to terrible TV programmes ripped off from 1970s Australian soap operas.
    I am more freaked out by becoming a hoarder than I am by parting with things, so I am a ruthless wardrobe culler. Also having a lifetime of body image issues, I now refuse to keep clothes that don't fit (too small) so that helps. And there's nothing in any op shop to fit me so the temptation is not there. Hence, my excesses are in my fabric stash instead. So I do understand!

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    1. Oooh, fabric stashes. That sounds wonderful!! I imagine you don't just see fabric but you see potential gowns and dreamy dresses of all sorts. I have a stash but it's rather pathetic. I'll need to work on that.
      Thanks for your comment, Maryanne.

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    2. Actually most days I see all the money I could have spent on travel hehe. And no matter how much fabric I get, I always need more. It's exactly the same condition as wardrobe hoarding, with the added disadvantage that it all requires time and effort to turn into clothing. :/

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  14. The state of my closet is that I am BORED with it. Luckily, I scored two new shirts on my Saturday commando thrift shopping excursion.
    Should you decide to throw away your entire wardrobe, I'll take the Big Bird coat and your fringe boots!

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    1. Hahaha! I'll remember that about the Big Bird and boots, although I suspect I'll wear those two lovables until they are even more tattered than they are in newish condition, although that might be hard to tell.
      Thanks for dropping by, Tami.

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  15. funny you should ask about my closet demon......I pulled all the clothes out of my closet this afternoon, sorted it out and kept most of it. I put winter sweaters in their summer home and bought tired skirt hangers. Found a whole new wardrobe hiding in the corners.

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    1. Tiered skirt hangers? Those are great devices, but they do tend to chew up my hands if I reach in too greedily, smooshed as they are against their neighbours. Well done on discovering new lands in there!!
      Thanks for commenting. We were on a mind meld - of sorts.

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  16. Yep... my closets exactly. I smiled fondly when I read about your vacuum-sealed spacebags. I pictured you logging those bags along for our clothes swap. Made things so much more interesting.
    I do get rid of stuff from time to time. Usually I don't miss a thing (bcause I have a bad memory for these things) but I do miss a couple of pieces. As I gave them away to friends with a thinner wallet than mine, I comfort myself with the thought that they are having fun with them now.
    But this limited clothes space and all these clothes hanging so close together presents me with a strange problem. What is in my closets is all good, no need to get rid of it. So I cannot buy any more as there really is no space for it... What a deluxe problem.
    As for Chuckie... I saw his mean little face and decided never to see the movie. Too scary for me.
    Now.. calm down.. there are no aliens in your house. Honestly there are not.
    Greetje

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    1. Hahaha! Yes, I remember lugging those around. And they're heavy. You are certainly generous with your giveaways, as I have been honoured with a few myself. And yes, as you say, a deluxe problem, perfect way to put it.
      Haha, no aliens but did you see Kezzie's comment? Her colleague found a crow in her daughters wardrobe. Something else to freak out about. I wonder, was it living or not? To hear it pecking inside, in Morse code?!!! Aaaack. Hahaha.
      Thanks for your comment, Greetje. Always so welcome!

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    2. As the windows were shut at the house of Kezzie's collegeague I presume the crow was in there for a while. So probably dead. Makes me sad. Any animal suffering makes me sad, no matter how small.
      Our cat used to be allowed to go outside through the cat door at night. But she brought in mice, birds and rats. All alive and screaming in our bathroom. As I just said I cannot take any animal suffering which meant I would go bananas, really freaking out. Ron had to get up in the middle of the night, shut the cat outside the bathroom and catch the endangered animal of the night. Alive with a towel. The bring it downstairs and release it through the front door. (I was always scared a rat would be so confused he would run back into the house. But that never happenend.) You can understand that Ron values his sleep more than he allows the cat to go out at night. The cat door is now shut when it is dark.....
      Poor cat, but lucky little animals.

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  17. I have not one but two houses filled with clothes but my excuse is that it's stock (I just borrow it).xxx

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    1. I need to open a shop, Vix. I love how you can switch between stock and home! And I clearly need a second house. Thanks for dropping by!

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  18. Arrrghhh - Chuckie in the closet will keep me naked today. I absolutely adore your closet - it fuels your matchless creativity. Let me play in there too (moving to Vancouver soon, if Donald (baby hands) Trump is elected. xox

    -Patti
    http://notdeadyetstyle.com

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    1. I just did a big guffaw, thinking for a fraction too long that the reason you were naked was that you think Chuckie is hot. Hahaha!! I would welcome you with wide open arms if you were to move here but don't worry. If Mr. Baby Hands got in power I'm sure he'd invade Canada quickly so you wouldn't even have to go through the process of immigration; I would.

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  19. Of course you have aliens in the closet, everyone does. The trick is not to look them in the eyes. Otherwise, it's all fine. It's one of those parallel world things that's been going on since the beginning of closets. Believe me, some people don't even know about it. ha.

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    1. Hahaha! Yes, it's like the bear, pretend you're dead or scare them. I probably scare my clothes when I open the door and scream every time. In fact, my green shaggy muppet coat was once a lovely caramel-coloured leather coat.
      Thanks for your comment, Pao. So glad you could visit.

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  20. oh mel - marrrrvelous!!!!!
    the thought of chuckie in your or my closet is a very horrible one - but exactly at this point i started laughing out loud!!! no one can made up such stuff like you!!!
    ripley would be a cool candidate for the yellow skirt - if she was real of cause! :-)
    i made the pics this week - that thing ist magic - wearing it is like being on champagne!
    love! xxxxxx

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    1. Haha, Ripley in the skirt. That would be good. But she would get dirt and alien guts all over it. Maybe that would be her contribution. Heh.
      O happy day! You took your photos. How much fun! I really look forward to see them. Make sure you let me know when you do. It IS magic.
      Thanks always for your comments, Beate.

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  21. That painting you did is wonderful. I love the colours and the dimensions....how this women glances towards the unknown is so powerful....great work!

    The story about your closet is so funny...you have such an entertaining style of writing. Now, about your red outfit....I absolutely ADORE it! you're an inspiration.

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    1. You are an artist, Ivana, so I am very pleased that you like my painting. The little figure in that piece was me at the time. I had a phase of painting myself with green skin.
      Thanks for your generous words. I'm happy you could visit!

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  22. Thanks, Hollie. This is the best kind of screaming.

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  23. Bwah! You are full of all kinds of awesome crazy, which is the best kind. I love your painting and the co-O illustration too! I purged last week, which felt soooo good. I never miss things (I can always visit them last time I wore them - pictures are worth a thousand hairballs, etc.), and I like seeing my friends and coworkers wearing them around.

    Hey, where are we going for brunch? It's not far away...! Soon!

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    1. Re. brunch I sent you an email with some ideas. We'll find somewhere excellent.
      I might take your lead - I'm thinking of a capsule idea to stretch my imagination and clear my mind.
      Way to go on the closet cleaning!!
      Thanks for dropping by, Sheila.

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  24. Hilarious! I have closet issues too, and am always trying to somehow magically become more organized. But I'm a collector, and the only way to change that would be a frontal lobotomy. So guess I'll continue as is.

    Your photos could never be boring. Love the shot with colorful coat and pants!!!

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    1. Collecting is so much freaking fun. I've seen bits of your collection and, wow, I bow down to it. Please carry on!
      Thanks for much for you inspiration always, Judith.

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