I never know what to wear in Florida. First of all, you would not believe the amount of people wearing jeans in 90 degree weather with 100% I’mSeriouslySuffocating humidity. It’s like they are pretending it’s not hot.
I want to scream out and say, “I see you in those jeans over there! I see the sweat dripping down your neck. Why do you hate shorts so much?!!” (Honestly, I do wear jeans in the Florida winter but it’s totally acceptable that time of year because it drops down to 83 degrees.)
And then there is the issue of “casual” attire. In South Florida, you don’t wear casual clothes to a casual luncheon. Apparently, a casual luncheon is a blouse/cute pants or a dress and wedge heels. Except if you meet for lunch at the gym. Then you can wear workout wear. Whether or not you have worked out.
Then this weekend I found out about appropriate attire for a shiva call. A shiva call is when you visit a family who is mourning the death of a loved one. It’s a Jewish tradition for the family to sit shiva for a certain number of days while friends come to pay their respects and bring baked goods.
You must bring baked goods. I don’t know why. You don’t bring alcohol. Or flowers. Or Belgian chocolates. Just baked goods.
So a friend of ours here in Florida lost his 97-year-old grandmother who lived a very long, beautiful life. The family was sitting shiva so we made plans to go over yesterday afternoon and pay our respects.
Me: What should we wear?
Rick: Casual. I’m wearing shorts.
Me: Are you sure that’s appropriate?
Rick: Yes. It’s Florida.
This was my opportunity to realize that my husband had no idea what he was talking about. But did I seize this opportunity? Did I say, “I don’t think so. This is a shiva call. We need to dress up a bit and not show up like the surfer family?” No, I did not.
Did I think to myself, “It’s far better to be overdressed than underdressed for any occasion?” No, I did not.
Did I remember the time my husband told me that at his parents beach house, “Everyone is totally casual all the time” and then I had a pair of cut-offs to wear when everyone got dressed up to go out to dinner. No, I did not.
I simply said… “Ok.”
And I wore this…
And when we arrived, I looked around at everyone’s far more appropriate, more formal non-shorts attire and turned and stared with desperate, pleading eyes at my husband that must have conveyed my discontent because Rick just said, “I’m sorry.”
And then my friend came up to us and said (and I swear this is the truth), “Did you guys just come from the beach?”
Well, at least we remembered the baked goods.