Hardy Cowell

I really really hate clothes shopping.

I know that it’s not something that’s unique to me but it’s still something that I find stressful and mortally disappointing.

I decided today that I needed some interview clothes after trying on my current (inadequate) pairs of trousers. Although they fit there’s very little about them that makes me feel confident, and that’s a big part of going for any job interview. The waistline of my existing ‘smart’ trousers sits (for want of a better way of describing it) not far under my boy boobs and I feel I appear rather ridiculous.


I have a kind of Oliver Hardy crossed with Simon Cowell thing going on at the moment and it’s not a good look.

Initially I went shopping with the idea of getting a bargain basement suit, but it seems that anything that fits around the waist in terms of jackets also carries with it a length that’s vaguely similar to Harry Potter’s cape.

In my admittedly downbeat and often distorted view of myself this pretty much paints a sign on my forehead that says ‘THIS GUY IS WEARING ABNORMAL OUTSIZED CLOTHING‘.

This may seem odd to some readers as all of my clothing is the same size – but trust me when I say that when it comes to suit jackets that will fit my waist they come with arms that appear to be made for a gorilla.

All of the corresponding trousers in contrast seem to have been modelled by a fat giraffe.

A few people have suggested (given my lack of funds) that I try charity shops for such items and I’m absolutely not proud or snobbish when it comes to clothes. As long as it looks good I really don’t care where they came from – but looking through 2nd hand shops today has simply proven to be a lesson in how to make me feel utterly miserable.

The biggest size I found in any of the nine charity shops I went to in Leamington were at least 10 inches too small in terms of trouser waists and I’m not going to get started on how ridiculous it is trying to find a shirt that’s even vaguely close to my size.

I’m also now firmly convinced that anyone that’s donated a tie to charity lately is an ex Religious Education teacher who retired in 1978. The only matching items I could imagine going with the ones I found were either brown tweed jackets with leather elbow patches or a merciful gallows scaffold.

In the end I spent over £100 on new clothes (I didn’t get a jacket in the end) that just make me feel angry. I’m annoyed because I’m left with the sensation that I’ve had to buy things that I feel I’ve (through necessity) just compromised on.

They’re not bad clothes. They look quite smart in their own way actually, but I instantly hate them because they present me in a light I’m really really uncomfortable with.

Primarily I think it comes down to me tucking my shirt into my trousers.

Sounds stupid right?

Well – as I’ve been in a pretty relaxed work environment for many years I’ve not had to do this for many years. Even back when I started my previous job my ‘waist’ was an anatomical likelihood rather than a visual reality. I haven’t tucked my shirt into a pair of trousers for a decade and a half and I’m absolutely hating the reality of how I look when I do.

I guess though that this would be a million times worse if I hadn’t made the progress that I have. I probably wouldn’t have been ABLE to get any the items of clothing that I have today – so for that I’m thankful.

I guess what I’m trying to say (in an admittedly rather downbeat way) is that there are times that I feel my endpoint is light years away and that I’ve struggled and made so much effort for ALL THIS TIME to just get close to where I was before, and I have to do it all again and more besides to get to where I want to be. At the moment success seem very far away in the distance.

Anyway – enough of feeling sorry for myself. I need to just accept it for what it all is.

Gradual and continued progress.

Instead of stopping off at the kebab and cream cake shops on the way home I dutifully stood in my kitchen chopping up a prawn and tuna rocket and carrot salad when I got back, which despite what I really wanted to do was the right call.


I really wish that I didn’t have moments like this internet. I’d love to have limitless and un-dentable confidence. I wish that all the time I could look in the mirror and just smile – seeing the inner me rather than the guy whose trousers button up just under his chins.

Maybe tomorrow.


9 thoughts on “Hardy Cowell

  1. I wish I could buy a big man’s shirt that fits round my belly but doesn’t have a huge gaping big neck. My collar size can’t be in proportion to my tummy, because formal shirts always look ridiculous on me when I wear a tie.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I am so sorry you had such a horrible experience dear. That must have been pretty disheartening. But don’t you dare and think that the ill fit on of the suits are all, because of your size and shape. Affordable ready made suites rarely fit well for anyone. My cousin’s husband was wearing one on his wedding day, and it looked horrible.. and that guy is skinny! He ended up looking like he was wearing his big brother’s suit.

    This goes for regular clothes as well. Although I have lost tons of weight, I still cannot wear everything I would like, because sometimes it sits strange around the bust, back, arms… you name it. And don’t get me started about the number of pants I need to have taken in because they are too long <– wide hips for the win.

    So please, please, please don't come down on yourself like a ton of bricks because of this. And don't start body shaming yourself. Sometimes it is just hard to find good, flattering clothes: and that is often the fault of the clothes. Not yours.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Pingback: Silly numbers – daveywankenobie

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