I have a sweater. It is like a dog.
It’s big and fluffy and, when you wear it, it gets everywhere. It doesn’t look good, it might not be attractive to others, but – To me. – it is adorable.
I don’t wear it often. On very cold days, I drag it out by it’s big dumb arms and I put it over my torso. It makes me look bulky and big, like a football player’s patchwork skin has been placed atop my own. It has strange shoulders and is made of big fat cords that have been woven together in a delicious interplay between black and white. It’s awkward. It’s French. It cost a few hundred dollars that I allowed myself to spend three days after Christmas two years ago because the money and the sweater were conspiring for this to happen. I have probably only worn it three or four times.
It’s not an easy wear. The sweater – A Sandro Fall 2015 Menswear creation. – wears you. It’s like when you take a dog for a walk and the dog is pulling you along and you can barely keep up and then an old man, in a chuckle, calls out to you “Who’s walking who?!” and you think he is a dumb moron but you know deep down that he is correct. The sweater wears you, like a dog.
It’s too big to wear. It makes your shoulders giant. It makes you look fat. You seek drastic, fun plays with proportions from it but you’re left with a neanderthal swagger that wouldn’t even do the most fit cave person justice. It might be oversized but it doesn’t slump. It might feel heavy but it’s actually just thick. It’s a hybrid of a coat and a jumper. It’s a mutt.
Even when you’re not wearing it, it is being worn. If it’s on your lap, it’s so prominent that it appears to be perching in a posed repose, a sleep that has been trained to happen over crossed bare legs in and out of the house, when the puppy needs to be seen but not heard. If it’s around a shoulder or waist, it lets itself be known by how it drags you and how it molts in slivery flecks, curls and waves of single hairs that make a black shirt appear to be vibrating. If you carry it by the arms, at the side, it almost certainly looks leashed, walking quickly on too fast feet that are impossible to see.
The sweater is beyond a sweater. It is a dog. Like a dog, you love it. Like a dog, you hate it. It’s something that is special, that only certain people get to see, that you’re never not aware of when its out and that you’re never not aware of when it’s in. It’s something you take out and contextualize yourself with because it is such a lovely imposition.
This may be a clothing item, it may be mostly closeted, but it seems to follow you just like a dog. It’s a type of clothing that isn’t clothing. It’s a dog which is perhaps why I love it so much even though it doesn’t do anything for me. It’s a sweater like a dog.