A few months ago, I ordered some clothes for my kids on oldnavy.com. Sure, I could have gone to an actual Old Navy store to make the purchase, but the way I look at it, shopping online is better for the environment. Going to an Old Navy store would involve driving and using up more of our precious resource, gasoline. I’m dedicated to saving our planet, so if that means sitting on my butt in front of a computer in my warm and toasty house and ordering clothes online, then call Benjamin Moore, I think I’m green! And furthermore….
OK, OK….I’m not being completely truthful. The real reason that I went to oldnavy.com instead of going to Old Navy was that it was cold and rainy outside and I was so warm and cozy under my blanket that I couldn’t drag my lazy ass off the couch. True, the “saving the environment” angle makes me look better, but lazy people can help the environment too!
Placing my order on oldnavy.com was quick, easy and hassle free and the clothes arrived within the week. The shipment of clothing from oldnavy.com was expected – what was unexpected was the barrage of emails I received from them. Practically from the moment I hit “confirm” to finalize my order, I have been inundated by oldnavy.com emails. At least once a week I am the lucky recipient of an email informing me of new merchandise or the latest oldnavy.com sales event. Instead of complaining about these emails the logical thing would be to unsubscribe from this mailing list, but I find it’s just easier to delete the emails as soon as they reach my inbox. Besides, once in a blue moon one of these emails has content actually worth reading. For instance, I recently received an email from oldnavy.com that contained the subject line “Half off all clearance items”. “Half off” and “clearance” in the same sentence? Now this was an email that demanded my full attention!
Once again I found myself sitting in front of my computer shopping for clothes at oldnavy.com. This time, however, I decided to shop for myself. While browsing through the women’s clothing section, I came across something that, quite honestly, I hadn’t seen before. It was a surprising and disturbing find.
Was it the wide selection of merchandise at oldnavy.com? No it wasn’t the wide selection of merchandise at oldnavy.com
Was it rock bottom prices never before seen at oldnavy.com? No it wasn’t rock bottom prices never before seen at oldnavy.com.
Was it a hat? No it wasn’t a hat?
Was it a milk bowl for the cat? No, it wasn’t a ……what? Oh, sorry – I guess I’ve got a little too much Once Upon A Potty on the brain (spoiler alert – Joshua uses the potty and his mother is happy and proud).
The source of my shock and awe was the size that certain pieces of clothing were available in. The size was XXS.
XXS. That’s extra extra small. Huh? I’d seen stores carry XS as a size, but XXS? Was XXS a real size or was it a typo, maybe someone had a brief muscle spasm in their finger and hit that “X” key one too many times. Interesting thought, but unlikely given that XS was listed right next to the XXS. I was curious as to what defined the size XXS, so I checked out the oldnavy.com size chart. Measurements were listed and an XS was described as size 0-2, but no measurements were given for XXS. If XXS wasn’t even on the size chart how was I supposed to know what size XXS was? If XS was 0-2, what numeric size would XXS be? -1? Yes, -1 is less than 0 so it would make perfect mathematical sense that a size smaller than 0 would be a negative number. But I guess negative number sizes are a confusing concept for models to grasp, so the fashion industry has opted for 00 to represent the size smaller than 0. But sometimes 00 is confusing as well…..
Store employee: May I help you?
Model: Yes, I need these jeans in a size ooh
Store employee: A size what?
Model: A size ooh
Store employee: Ooh?
Model: Yes, ooh. You know, ooh rhymes with pooh.
Store employee: Size 00 is not ooh, it’s zero zero. Double zero. Sigh, we had this same exact conversation when you were in the store last week.
Model: We did?
Store employee: Yes, and the week before that! I think your IQ must be the same as your jeans size.
Model: I have an IQ of ooh? Wow, maybe I should go to college!
What kind of person actually wears an XXS? Yes, I know, a very small person. Let me rephrase that – who wears an XXS? I don’t think I personally know any women who would wear an XXS. Who is oldnavy.com trying to cater to by providing clothes in an XXS? The only people I can see fitting into a size XXS are (1) children and (2) Hollywood anorexics actresses.
I imagine some preteens and teenagers could wear an XXS, so oldnavy.com now gives these girls the option of finding clothes that fit either in their girls section or in their women’s section. Now if you were a 13 year old girl would you choose –
(A) Shopping in the girls section where you’d find the latest styles so you can dress like all of your friends or
(B) Shopping in the women’s section where you may find the latest styles but you’d run the risk of buying and wearing the same outfit as your mother.
That choice would be a no-brainer for a preteen or teenage girl. No girl wants to dress like their mother. Scientific studies have shown that if given the choice between wearing the same outfit as their mother or wearing a garbage bag, preteen and teenage girls will pick the garbage bag each and every time. Even younger girls shun their mother when it comes to dressing alike – they’d rather dress like their American Girl doll. Sorry oldnavy.com, I don’t expect you to sell a lot of your women’s XXS merchandise to the preteen and teenage crowd.
There are oodles of Hollywood anorexics actresses that would easily fit into a size XXS. However, when I picture celebrities shopping, I imagine them shopping at expensive designer boutiques and not at oldnavy.com. Walking the red carpet at the Emmys, SAG Awards, Academy Awards or one of the other numerous Hollywood award shows, actresses are frequently asked by reporters, “Who are you wearing?” – I have yet to hear an actress respond, “I’m wearing Old Navy”. The thought of a famous actress who gets paid millions of dollars per film actually wearing Old Navy to a major awards show is laughable……or is it?
Maybe it’s not a completely outrageous thought that oldnavy.com could find a niche among the Hollywood crowd. The country is in the midst of a recession and a poor economy affects everyone, even the rich and famous. People from all walks of life find themselves cutting back on luxuries, including high priced brand name clothing. So maybe oldnavy.com and their size XXS is on to something. By shopping at oldnavy.com, celebrities could find stylish and comfortable clothes at an extremely affordable price. Actresses could wear Old Navy to movie premieres or red carpet events without the fear of ending up on some magazine’s “worst dressed” list. This could become the new trend in Hollywood – frugal would be “in” and excess would be “out”. Given the poor economy and the need to eliminate excess, Hollywood could take it even one step further. Why not forgo the lavish red carpet award shows altogether? Is it really necessary to stage such a huge expensive production for the sole purpose of honoring someone’s achievements? Think about it – in other industries, when a person works hard and achieves success, they may be honored by their co-workers with a hearty pat on the back, a plaque and a “Congratulations” sheet cake from Jewel in the company break room. Instead of spending thousands of dollars on elaborate award shows, Hollywood could set a great example by renting out the nearest American Legion Hall, having a nice buffet dinner, maybe a cash bar and giving out a couple of awards. The red carpet and expensive wardrobe could be eliminated in favor of casual affordable clothing like the kind you find at oldnavy.com. Wishful thinking? Probably, but it’s interesting how such a small size like XXS has sparked such big ideas. Maybe my initial doubts about oldnavy.com’s size XXS were all wrong.
Oldnavy.com’s size XXS – it’s one extra extra small step for oldnavy.com, one giant leap for skinny actresses, fashion, society and mankind.