Friday, September 18, 2009

Is it True She's Being Dressed by Cindy Lauper?*

I normally leave Michelle-O alone, since she wasn't elected to anything. However, when she's out there, like she was today, talking policy**, then I figure she's fair game. Woman, what is with this Batman Utility Belt? And she's wearing not just one hideous belt, but two, evidently to let you know, IN YOUR FACE, that she really, really meant to wear that belt. I have never seen an adult woman dress more bizarrely in my entire life.

THE BELT is evidently a favorite fashion tick of Michelle's. She wears them all the time, and no one seems to be able to talk her out of them. And she doesn't wear them, you know, around her waist, where most people wear belts. She wears them under her boobs. What is that about?

Now that fall is here, Michelle is wearing belts over her sweaters--sweaters that in every case are too small to button. When did wearing too-small sweaters become a fashion thing for any female over the age of eight? Here she is the other day at the White House, Michelle Fashion Watchers calling this her "Olympics Rally Outfit." Yet another belt, yet another belt worn over a small sweater. Here's the "official" description: "Mrs. Obama layered a turquoise cardigan over a yellow t-shirt, and cinched it with her favorite Azzedine Alaia belt. She wore a floral skirt and green kitten heels." Green. Kitten. Heels. Ah yes. I thank the fashion gods that I've lived 57 years without ever once wearing something called "kitten heels."

I haven't yet found the  "official" description of this next belted outfit. My guess is, there isn't one. The "unoffical" description is this: "Who lets Michelle out in public in an outfit like this? This is one of the worst outfits I have ever seen. . . . Am I the only one thinking this is just plain nuts?"

However, I don't think the silver belt ensemble is the worst. I say her clear plastic belt with the red buckle at least ties with the Batman number she wore today. I thought maybe the plastic belt was something she picked up at Target, but evidently I'm misinformed. This is a belt designed by Sonia Rykiel which, seriously, may be a big part of the problem. Here's the "official description" of this belt: On one hand, some view this chunky belt as uniquely fashion-forward and avant-garde, being placed perfectly on her silhouette, drawing the attention to the upper-half of her figure. On the other hand, various critics tend to believe she wears this distinctive, childish belt too often and question: is a clear, plastic belt proper for the first lady? I remember I once had clear plastic shoes with sparkles embedded in them that I thought were very cool and that I probably wore "too often" (although, unlike Michelle, I wasn't allowed to wear them in public), but that's when I was six. Seriously.

Along with the plastic belt, in this next photo Michelle-O is again seen wearing the too-small sweater, this time over a large-print dress. Evidently another favorite of hers is large, large prints, but this particular print dress is simply beyond the scope of this post; however, I will say that, taken altogether, the entire ensemble could best be titled "Aunt Esther, c.1956." Who knows what she was going for when she put that hair/pearls/sweater/dress/belt together? Maybe her mother dressed her that day.


Michelle needs either a side-view mirror or a friend who will tell her: I don't think that "too small" sweater look is working for ya, hon.

Here's the plastic belt and small sweater combo again, this time worn at Westminster Abbey, the outfit completed by multiple flower belts, looped around the largest part of her body. Wow.

Although I think first prize in THE WORST MICHELLE-O OUTFIT EVAH has to go to this number, which she wore at the Vatican to meet the Pope. Ouch. Who was her fashion consultant for this one? Is she just absolutely clueless or was she mocking the more than one billion members of the Roman Catholic Church? Maybe she was dressed to visit a mosque after she saw the Pope? Was she thinking "Halloween"? This is the strangest, ugliest outfit I've ever seen on a serious public figure. Was this the first public outing of the Batman belt? I think it might have been.

This next one--oh dear. But. . . her arms are so toned.

My take on Michell's fashion non-sense is this: First, people writing about her simply don't know what to say, and who can blame them. And second, everyone around this woman is too afraid to tell her she looks ridiculous in these goofy under-the-boob belts. Settle down, Michelle, and get your fashion advice from some grown women.

*So, my original question: Is Michelle-O being dressed by Cindy Lauper? Well, if Michelle's outfits get any more bizarre, Cindy Lauper could be an improvement.

**OK, so I've had some feedback about this post, some whining that I should be more concerned about what Michelle-O had to say than about her strange Batman Tool Belt fashion statement. I have no problem dealing with the substance of Michelle's remarks, although, as I will explain, that doesn't mean I take her for a serious spokesperson on policy matters, particularly on health care issues. But if they want her to keep talking on the issue, I say, bring it on, Sister.

Here is her speech yesterday or whenever it was:

Here's my serious question about Michelle Obama's remarks: Did she also use that strained, whispery emphasis voice in the hospital board room when she created her patient dumping scheme while working in her $317,000-a-year job at the University of Chicago Medical Center?

“Unacceptable," says Michelle. . . . "It’s unacceptable. It’s not fair; it’s not right; and these are hard workin’ people we’re talking about.”

The absolute gall of this woman, coming out and giving this speech, is–well, 'way beyond unacceptable. The woman created a policy that dumped poor patients on community hospitals, yet somehow she feels she has the moral authority to lecture and wag her finger about our health care system being "not right" or "unacceptable." I don't know how hypocrites like her sleep at night. The best thing the administration can do, at least on this issue, is put a muzzle on this woman. Yet she's out there giving this speech, so she and her history of patient dumping are fair game.

Oh, and P.S. Will someone tell this woman that her discussion of health care being a "woman's issue" is only about 40 years out of date? "If that is our goal," she says, that women attain "true equality"--is she kidding? Seriously, this speech sounds like a time-warp back to 1970. Who writes this stuff for her?

So actually, it turns out that talking about Michelle's goofy fashion sense is probably the nicest thing I have to say about her.

Update: The following was part of Michelle-O's speech. I admit to missing it because I had no interest in listening to the entire thing--the 2-minute YouTube clip was pretty much as much as I could take. Michelle Obama said women are being “crushed by the current structure of our health care” because they often are responsible for taking care of family illnesses, arranging checkups and monitoring follow-up care.

OK, Michelle, take a deep breath for a minute. You see, what you're talking about here--arranging check-ups for kids and follow-up care--that's pretty much "normal stuff" that regular moms do for their kids in real life. Did you not get the "Mom" memo, you know, the one they send out when the kid is born? Gosh, it's a good thing you have 76 staff members in your employ to keep an eye on these things for you so that you're not crushed by what other women see as pretty normal, everyday life. And it's mind-numbingly obvious that these crushing responsibilities will continue for at least one of the adults in every child's life even if ObamaCare is somehow passed.

Point number two, including another quote from the speech. The First Lady sought support for the administration’s health-care plans from family advocacy groups and health-care professionals, saying the treatment of women under the current system is “unacceptable.”

Except that, to use one example, the U.S. breast cancer survival rate compared to other countries like Great Britain and Canada, no matter what statitstics you use, is consistently significantly higher in the U.S. than other countries.

I am sick to death of these kinds of speeches, where fact-free arguments and assertions are made about the "disaster" that is the U.S. health care system, and not one mention--NOT ONE--from any of them about the many, many excellent aspects of our health care, including research, technology, and personnel. I want them to stop it. I'm sick of it. A lot of people are sick of it. My overall assessment: I cry "bullshit" on this speech.

Update #2: OK, looking at all of these Michelle-O fashion pics, I think I finally have the belt thing figured out. Call me slow. I'm not exactly a doyenne of fashion myself, but on the other hand, I never pretended to be, either. Cinching that belt around the smallest part of her midsection makes Michelle look--get this--smaller. Imagine that! Putting a belt around her actual waist would instantly call attention to the fact that not only does she have a big waist (or no waist at all, if you prefer to think of it that way), but she also has gynormous hips. Belt mystery solved. When I was in Cambridge, Mass last fall, I was struck by the mindless copied overuse of "the scarf," all tied exactly the same way, by what seemed to me like nine women out of ten on the Harvard campus. Well, look for "the belt" to replace the scarf. Barf. What was it Coco Chanel used to say: "Elegance is refusal."

Here's another instantly slimming fashion accessory, used to even better advantage by Michelle-O than the belt: a fatter friend, dressed similarly, but worse. Here's Opra, taking a bullet for Michelle on the cover of her own magazine. What a friend! Oh look, there's yet another clear plastic belt sighting. Michelle really does wear that thing too much.


nobackindown said...

not to mention those ridiculous belts make her ass look huge -- and fashion experts refer to her as the second coming of Jackie-O? .. give me a break!

nobackindown said...

she could have benefited from one of the many teleprompters in her husbands collection .... look down, look up, sniff, uh, uh, uh, sniff, look down ... don't forget to tear up just a bit (a la pelozi) and throw in a hand gesture or two to round it out ...

Labwriter said...

Well, it's not just the BELTS making her ass look huge--you know what I'm sayin'?