I stepped out of the dressing room wearing a pair of skinny jeans I was convinced made me look 20 pounds lighter, more muscular, and somehow more intelligent.
“They’re good, right?” I said excitedly, slowly turning to catch myself at every angle in the mirror.
When it comes to trying on new clothes, I often suffer from high self esteem — prone to thinking I can pull off trends that are absolutely wrong for my body type, and definitely not age-appropriate. Fortunately, I have good friends in my life to save me from myself.
My best friend, Susan sat nearby, texting on her phone. She looked up at me briefly and then back down.
“No,” she said flatly, her thumbs still typing.
“But these are so hot right now!” I insisted.
“Fake eyelashes are hot right now too — that doesn’t make them a good idea on you. Take them off. Are we done here? I’m bored.”
She’s harsh. This is why I love her.
“Well played,” I grumbled.
Over lunch, she reminded me of how many times my trendy impulse buys ended up in a pile in the back of my closet on a dusty layover waiting for a one-way trip to Goodwill. I insisted she was exaggerating and didn’t know me at all.
Then I went home and went through my closet. After filling three bags with items I probably only wore once or twice, I determined two things: 1) OK, maybe she does know me, and 2) just because something is popular and looks great in ads or movies, doesn’t make it a great idea in real life.
Falling victim to fashion trends is no big deal in the grand scheme. It just means we end up with an Instagram archive of photos to look back on in a couple of years, wondering “What was I thinking?”
When it comes to trendy pets though, the price we pay as a society is far more serious. Our animal shelters have become the clearance bin for discarded dogs brought into the world for profits’ sake.
Take “Game of Thrones,” as an example. The shows broad popularity has sparked a huge demand for huskies because of their physical similarities to direwolves.
Adoring viewers are buying these dogs from pet stores and breeders (often naming them after their favorite characters), then — after realizing how much work and commitment are required to care for them — dumping them at shelters already bursting at the seams with homeless dogs.
The trend is so far reaching at this point, series star, Peter Dinklage issued this statement:
“Please, to all of ‘Game of Thrones‘’ many wonderful fans, we understand that due to the direwolves’ huge popularity, many folks are going out and buying huskies,” Dinklage says.
“Not only does this hurt all the deserving homeless dogs waiting for a chance at a good home in shelters, but shelters are also reporting that many of these huskies are being abandoned — as often happens when dogs are bought on impulse, without understanding their needs. Please, please, if you’re going to bring a dog into your family, make sure that you’re prepared for such a tremendous responsibility and remember to always, ALWAYS, adopt from a shelter.”
Well said, Mr. Dinklage.
Right now, we have several husky type dogs who need a home for the holidays, like Puppy, a gorgeous 4-year-old Alaskan husky who came to us from a shelter up north. He’s very gentle around people and has the sweetest bluest eyes. Come check him out!