Text & Textile — 4
I’m sixteen and I go to private school. I sit disinterested, at the back of the bus listening to Charles Aznavour through my headphones. I’m trying on my very large Levi’s spring coat in pale blue jeans. I wear the school trousers, the low-rise model for boys. The wide pleated navy blue skirt does no one any good (I don’t know what to think of the huge metal diaper pin that holds the garment at the side), and my efforts to make it shorter earn me repeated warnings from the supervisors and monthly convocations to the director’s office. The consequence is brutal, I am forbidden from "color day", this blessed moment scheduled only a few times a year and which gives the right to those who have respected the dress code to wear whatever they like.
This morning, under my large white shirt, overly unbuttoned and half tucked into my pants, I’m wearing a pale pink long-sleeved sweater. I slept with hair rollers I sprayed them with CK one. All the other girls are wearing jeans and a white t-shirt. I struggle to walk straight, unbalanced by my black suede Mary Jane platforms. I don’t wear jeans or even the cashmere my grandmother gave me, which I promise myself I’ll wear the day I get that famous "color day". I meet the director, who looks at me from head to toe and goes his way with a knowing half-smile. I didn’t break any school rules today, I croon Parce que and I feel free.
I would like to tell the young girl at the back of the bus that she will still wear everything too big when she grows up, that it will become her signature. And that this imposed uniform, which she hates so much, is nevertheless rich in lessons.