I was honestly a little relieved for November to end because it meant the ending of “Movember.” It’s a lovely effort and I hope they raised a lot of money, but between you and me, I have a hard time with the moustaches. I don’t hate them. They are fine in and of themselves. But I find it very disorienting when a man I know begins to grow a moustache. It just sits there, in the middle of his face, and I feel like I can’t stop looking at it. So then I make an effort to focus on his eyes which also feels weird because now I’m staring intently into the eyes of this random man. Suffice it to say, I’m relieved that the moustaches are no longer new, and many of them are gone.
Little did I know that Movember is actually followed by “Dressember.” I was immediately more optimistic about Dressember – I like dresses more than moustaches. The connection between wearing dresses and the effort to end human trafficking seems a little hazy to me, but perhaps it has something to do with the freedom and protections we have as women in our society, starting with the freedom to wear what we want. Whatever the official connection, I like the idea of changing up my routine in order to remind myself of something important – in this case the desperate need to advocate and intervene on behalf of women in sexual slavery. So I’m trying to wear dresses in December, and whisper a prayer every morning as I get dressed.
The subject of dresses reminds me of one of my favorite passages written by Dorothy Sayers. She was a Christian novelist who lived in England in the first half of the 1900’s, a contemporary and friend of C.S. Lewis. She writes from a common sense feminist perspective, and her observations are brilliant. Enjoy!
“Let me give one simple illustration of the difference between the right and the wrong kind of feminism. Let us take this terrible business – so distressing to the minds of bishops – of the women who go about in trousers. We are asked: “Why do you want to go about in trousers? They are extremely unbecoming to most of you. You only do it to copy the men.” To this we may very properly reply: “It is true that they are unbecoming. Even on men they are remarkably unattractive. But, as you men have discovered for yourselves, they are comfortable, they do not get in the way of one’s activities like skirts and they protect the wearer from draughts about the ankles. As a human being, I like comfort and dislike draughts. If the trousers do not attract you, so much the worse; for the moment I do not want to attract you. I want to enjoy myself as a human being, and why not? As for copying you, certainly you thought of trousers first and to that extent we must copy you. But we are not such abandoned copy-cats as to attach these useful garments to our bodies with braces. There we draw the line. These machines of leather and elastic are unnecessary and unsuited to the female form. They are, moreover, hideous beyond description. And as for indecency – of which you sometimes accuse the trousers – we at least can take our coats off without becoming the half-undressed, bedroom spectacle that a man presents in his shirt and braces.”
– Dorothy Sayers, Are Women Human?