Sorry this is a bit late. I meant to send it out right after Memorial Day but I got swamped.
Happy Summer Everyone! Memorial Day has always been a favorite holiday of mine. It’s patriotic, it’s full of high caloric picnic food like hot dogs, hamburgers and Duncan Hines brownies and it’s the start of summer. And with summer comes one of my favorite things…going “down the shore.”
I love the Jersey shore. I love long days reading trashy magazines and talking to friends and family in low slung beach chairs that hover an inch over the sand. I love the shower you get after a long day at the beach, where your skin tingles and your eyes feel heavy from the afternoon activities and fresh air. I love everything about the shore and I try to go as often as I can between Memorial Day and Labor Day.
And I’m not alone. Philadelphians love the Jersey Shore. We spend whole evenings talking about how to best navigate the Atlantic City Expressway and the best time to leave the city to avoid traffic. And everyone knows someone who has an aunt, a friend’s parent or a neighbor with a shore house and we all secretly hope to get invited even if it’s just to use their bathrooms before our drive back to the city.
Philadelphians love the shore and we’re used to seeing flip flop wearing gals and guys packing up their cars on Friday afternoons after skipping out of work a few hours early to head to the shore. No one would even think twice of seeing folks dressed in bathing suits and short shorts in the local 7-11 or WaWa on a Saturday morning. However, the one place I think most Philadelphians would agree is off limits for a lady in a bathing suit is church.
Yup, it happened. I was attending a 10 am mass at a local church in my South Philly neighborhood on a hot summer day and a woman in her 40s walked right in wearing a one piece patterned bathing suit, a barely there cover-up, a sun hat and flip flops. Understand, we weren’t in a church at the shore, we were in South Philly. And we weren’t at some beach themed novelty mass (that would be interesting). This was just your run-of-the-mill Sunday mass in the oldest Italian church in the US.
Now I completely understand that the church dress code has loosened a lot over the years. When I was a kid everyone dressed up Now, the only people who are not wearing jeans seem to be folks over 60. But a bathing suit? A bathing suit to church! To me this is like having a baby in a bar.
And this bathing suit sporting church lady actually accepted communion. She walked right up to the alter in her bathing suit, sun hat and flip flops as if she was walking up to a Mister Softie ice cream truck awaiting her treat.
I’ll never forget that church lady in a bathing suit. She is burned on my brain. I don’t think the good Christian ladies in the pew behind me talking trash about her will forget her either.
If you enjoyed this story, share it with your stylish friends.
Also, if you have an inappropriate outfit story I’d love to hear it.