Thursday, May 29, 2014

I think the reindeer missed this grandmother!

"Death, death, devil, devil, devil, devil, evil, evil, evil, evil songs.
Hell, you know that's how I get along.
The world is full of idiots so how can it be wrong,
Singing death, death, death, death, devil, devil, evil, evil songs." - Voltaire

A lot of parents at my son's daycare have gotten used to me, therefore, my morning drop off routine usually goes without incident but this morning was an exception. As I was helping my son getting out of the car, I felt this icy stare. I look up and I see a kid's grandmother staring at me. I assume it was a grandmother because I know most of the parents who drop their kids off the same time I do, I never seen her before. I hate to judge but...she just looks like a grandmother!  She made it no secret either that she was staring straight at me. What I really wanted to do was give her a dirty look and ask her exactly what her problem was but I waved "hello" and smiled instead. Just when I thought the woman couldn't frown anymore, she did! Her body language clearly indicated a look of utter disgust. Ignoring the icy chill coming from the back of my head, I proceed to walk in the daycare. I did turn around and look back and I see the grandmother waiting by the car with the child in the parking lot. I can't help but assume she was waiting for me to enter the daycare. 

As I was leaving, I felt that icy stare and there she is again, staring me down. Seriously, if I would of competed against this woman in a staring contest, I would of lost big time. Her facial expression was wide-eyed and her lips were pressed together, in disapproval. I am not shy when it comes to this sort of behavior. I look at the woman in eyes and she doesn't budge an itch. I smile and say in the sweetest voice I can muster "why hello there! Can I help you with something?" 

I really wish I could of captured the woman's expression on camera. It was quite comical. It was a cross between shock and disdain. She didn't say anything so I told her to have a nice day and skipped out the door.
I was quite amused but surprised. I thought I looked quite smart today and wasn't wearing anything really freaky. I think it was my coat that made her uneasy. Here is what I wore. She didn't really see the outfit (or the tattoo) because I had this coat on:

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

What to wear or what not to wear for work

Today gothlings and non-gothy folks, I am going to talk about dressing for the corporate world. I know depending on the industry you work for, some clothing/jewellery items are more acceptable than others. For instance, when I worked in the more corporate offices, pin-stripped suits were my best friend and anything that was not typical office wear was frowned upon. I am well aware that A LOT of the things I wear at my current office would of definitely sent me packing in previous jobs but there are some essential little rules I have acquired over the years:

- Know, and never cross, the boundaries of tolerance in appearance for your specific profession.

- Wean them in - establish mutual respect and then slowly show your true colors (or in this case lack of colors!) 

- Dress in a manner that is comfortable for your coworkers (within reason). Compromise enough to establish a good working relationship with your coworkers.

Know, and never cross, the boundaries of tolerance in appearance for your specific profession.
I noticed, depending on the industry, some offices are more lenient than others. I work in fashion so I can get away a little more than when I was working in the financial service industry. I can get away with fishnet stockings, my skirt with D-rings, tu-tu skirts, my 14 hole Doc Martens (worn with pants, leggings and tights),  occasional band t-shirt, visible facial piercings and tattoos and I am receptionist!

On the other hand, my spider web stockings, corsets, leather collar with spikes,visible garter belts, fishnet shirt, clothing with skulls on them, any ripped up clothing,  my big gothy boots that buckle up to my knees, are best left for the weekends or after work.

I have had many discussions with my immediate supervisor on this subject. I even have asked both my boss and immediate supervisor for permission when I got my facial piercing.

Wean them in - establish mutual respect and then slowly show your true colors (or in this case lack of colors!)  I did not immediately start to dress this way either. In fact, when I first started working for my current employer, I was "normal".  I like to say that it was a phase I was going through at the time. I foolishly felt like since I was a first time mom, I had to dress for the part. I was also getting out of a weird funk I was in. Those closest to me used to play "spot the goth undertones" because as much as I denied it, the real me was still there.

This all changed gradually and although my boss said I could wear whatever I wanted - within reason, I did not immediately prance into work all decked out. I worked my way to it. Yes, sometimes shocking the more conservative people can be amusing but we don't want to do this in an office! I took my time, built my confidence up at work. Another trick is to balance out with the more gothier looking outfits with the more conservative looking ones. One day, I wear the skirt with the D-rings and the next day, a very smart looking pair of black jeans and a plain t-shirt.

Dress in a manner that is comfortable for your coworkers (within reason). Compromise enough to establish a good working relationship with your coworkers.
Today, co-workers cannot imagine me wearing the things I used to or even looking the way I did when I first started and I am occasionally complimented for some of the things I wear. This acceptance hasn't always come easy and I coped with it by networking. When interacting with my colleagues, I am always professional, polite, and courteous. It doesn't mean you should spend personal time with them (unless you want to) or let them take advantage of you being nice and helpful, or even make fun of you for what you wear. I like to think that it speaks volumes when you can come to work and establish yourself as a valuable key player within the company. Make it so they see you, see how smart and capable you are. In the end, the clothes won't be noticed so much but your personality, your ability to get the job done well is what stands out. It does take a lot of work but in the end, if you cannot have a professional rapport with your co-workers, this could massively backfire on you. If you think about it, you should be doing this anyway in any job dress code or not.

 I also noticed that relating to people, even in a small way, helps. I am fortunate, there are tons of young parents at my company and it is so much easier to talk about the silly things your kids do vs trying to make conversation with people you clearly have nothing in common with (this is especially true for me. Some of my coworkers are really into sports and I am the more artsy type). Show them that you are human. It is funny how some people can perceive others. Sometimes, non-gothy people actually want to talk to us. They are curious and don't know how to approach us. Make yourself approachable. Yes, even if they ask you the same age old questions and make the same age old remarks. We all know them all but they don't. Be patient. I know it is easier said than done, believe me!

With all that being said, here are some silly photos I have taken over the past few months while on the job:

Sunday, May 25, 2014

My first post

Hello! I would like to start off by saying thank you! You found me! Whether it was by chance or you decided to be nice enough to read my Facebook status which lead you here.

I had a wave of inspiration earlier and decided to write what I was passionate about: The Goth subculture. I know there are many, many blogs on this subject but I decided to give it a little twist. Instead of those fashion pages or music pages, I decided to write about my life, as a thirty something goth chick who works in an office, is married and has a kid. I wanted to write about my family and about some of the comments I receive from people when I am out in public with my son. I wanted to show people just because we dress a certain way, it doesn't mean we cannot be "normal every day people". We just do it with a twist in a Morticia Addams sort of way!

I also want my readers, whether they are cute little baby bats just starting out in the scene, elder goths or just regular non-gothy folk  to see or relate to that sometimes, this isn't a phase we grow out of! We are sometimes the people who do your taxes, the guy who always wears that pin-stripped suit and darkly colored dress shirts at the bank. We are every where! Some goth people are more blatantly obvious than others with their appearance and sometimes we are more toned down. We could be your neighbor next door. Some people express themselves through their clothing and some people could be like me. Sitting at my computer while my kid is napping with a load of laundry in the machine. It is about 1pm in the afternoon, I am still not dressed yet. In fact, if you were to see me, you probably wouldn't think I was a gothy person at all! I am wearing Kermit the Frog pyjama pants and an old t-shirt that has Atari written on it. Any old skool gamers remember that console?

I want to write about my job and how I stay true to myself and work, as a receptionist no less in a busy office. Keep in mind though, I do work in the fashion industry that usually caters to the younger crowd so I can get a way with more than I did when I was working in the financial industry.

That being said, my main goal is to just write and enjoy myself. If I entertain you, make you laugh or even make new friends, lucky me!

Thanks for reading and here's to many more entries!


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