“A pop of colour does the trick”, or so I have been recently instructed. Even the most rudimentary of t-shirts can be dressed up with the addition of an ill-fitting jacket. It might work for Zoom but would it be good enough for real life? Would it work for a real evening out? Experience has taught me that the fish, I know I will order, often comes dressed in butter so it’s wise to give thought to how to dress for splatter.

Into my inbox popped a 15% off voucher, which I entered and bought a blouse I didn’t know I needed. In fact, I bought two blouses that I didn’t know I needed. Both
of them in a size smaller than I really am. Which of these blouses would go well with fish?

On balance, better to go with the one that would suffer less effect from butter. Having once sat opposite a blind diner who ate his buttered asparagus in much the same way that a small boy would suck long strands of pasta off the plate, slapping the strings against the side of his cheeks, I know the reach and devastation of a bit of the old melt. I know just how messy an eater I can be.

It’s an adventure, going out to eat in civilised company, or even not so civilised company. Here I should come clean and say that I’ve possibly given going out, to eat, more thought than I might have done before spending two years at home inhaling kettle crisps and lettuce.
Dressing up felt like a million dollars and I had all my bases covered. A bit of salmon slapped down on some well buttered giant cuscus may not appeal to everyone but the waiter had me at “pink or well done?” No one ever asks this about fish. “Pink” I said licking my lips.
The fish was delicious, the company good and the surroundings comfortable. I was at the point of sitting back in my chair, jacket off to show the best of my bargains, when it began to dawn on me, that the quirky red blob, that I thought had formed a charming variation to the regular repeat of an otherwise regulated floral pattern, was not what it seemed.

If anyone who sat down to lunch with me is reading this, do let me know if your silence was born of a sense of awkwardness or that you just didn’t notice that I was displaying my new dress size. I had left the house with the label still attached.

There is something undignified about walking around with the label still attached to your clothes. How easy it is to confuse one red blob sizing label with another. for anyone who did notice they may have had to do a second take in awe at just how slim I appear to have become.

While your eyes may not deceive you, I may be deceiving myself. I fear the blouse may have been wrongly labelled and to all practical affects, I too was mislabelled. Nothing more fishy about it than that.

I should say that I didn’t suck the fish off the plate, nor was anyone showered in butter, I have taken the blouse to the dry cleaners who remarked on the generosity of the cut.

It’s a good job I also have generous friends who do not judge me for these occasional lapses.