Dress Down Sunday: falsies and JD Salinger

Dress Down Sunday –

looking at what goes on under the clothes

the book:

The Catcher in the Rye by JD Salinger

published 1951 chapter 1

There were never many girls at all at the football games. Only seniors were allowed to bring girls with them. It was a terrible school, no matter how you looked at it. I like to be somewhere at least where you can see a few girls around once in a while, even if they’re only scratching their arms or blowing their noses or even just giggling or something. Old Selma Thurmer – she was the headmaster’s daughter – showed up at the games quite often, but she wasn’t exactly the type that drove you mad with desire. She was a pretty nice girl though. I sat next to her once in the bus from Agerstown and we sort of struck up a conversation. I liked her. She had a big nose and her nails were all bitten down and bleedy-looking and she had on those damn falsies that point all over the place, but you felt sort of sorry for her. What I liked about her, she didn’t give you a lot of horse manure about what a great guy her father was. She probably knew what a phoney slob he was.

observations: OK the picture looks nothing like that, but really, the poor women in Salinger get a pretty raw deal – there are a few photos around that might answer better to how she looked, but this lady’s unnaturally-shaped bra has been chosen instead to redress the balance. It’s not like Holden looks so great himself, with his weird clothes and his hat: like many a man of his time, he doesn’t have to treat women as real people with feelings, apart from his sister Phoebe. He doesn’t have much in common with yesterday’s Nora Ephron and her enjoyable ramblings about women’s lives, but there is this: just because Holden goes round saying other people are phoneys, who says he’s right? Who says he isn’t one? Just as Nora Ephron’s mother can be wrong, so Holden can be wrong. And just because someone says ‘if you want to know the truth’, it doesn’t mean he’s going to tell it.

Links up with: Catcher in the Rye has featured
before - and is mentioned in this entry and this one. You wouldn’t want to be a principal’s daughter in literature: here’s another one getting rough treatment in Dickens. More Dress Down Sunday by clicking on the label below.

Thanks to Colm (again) for the suggestion.

The artist Beo Beyond creates light-up costumes with fluorescent materials and blacklight: this
photo was taken at the artist´s studio in Barcelona. More details about blacklight costumes at BeoBeyond – they are astonishing, well worth a look.