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My Suburban Midwestern Mother's Summer Trend Forecast

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* I don't care who you are, everyone needs a nice pair of basic khakis in their wardrobe. You can dress them up, or dress them down, they go with every color under the sun -- really, you can't go wrong with a nice pair of khakis.

And I know you're not big on the pleated front I have on mine, but I tell you what Jilly, it is a great camouflage if you still haven't taken off those last five pounds.

* You may not think it looks as cool as some of the other styles, but I really think you ought to invest in one of those full-length, lined rain slickers. Last I heard, "drowned rat" wasn't an "in" look.

Besides, I'll tell you what's much more uncool than a sensible slicker, that's a case of pneumonia. No one will think you look cool if you're hacking and coughing or not even able to get out of bed. I can guarantee you that much.

* All the super-high heels might look nice, but what about arch support? When you're my age, you'll wish you'd thought more about arch support.

* Do you know what Betsy Johansson told me the other day? That all the hoity-toity restaurants are doing remakes on comfort foods like macaroni and cheese. I mean, hel-lo, people! I go out to eat so I can get something I couldn't make at home from a box!

But if that's the way things are going, I suppose my money's on Hamburger Helper -- nothing like a warm plate of noodles and ground beef to feed body and soul. Or maybe cheesy hotdog noodle-bake. Do you think I should send out my recipe?

* I'm really hoping standing up straight without those awful round-shoulders you kids get from sitting in front of a computer screen all day will be trendy again soon, but honestly, I'm not holding my breath.

Really, though, good posture is always in style.

* I tell you something that's going to be out in the next few months -- all the casual profanity.

I'm sure the HBO people think it makes their shows seem edgier, or more true-to-life, but no one I know talks like that, certainly not in company! If you ask me, that sort of language just shows a lack of a good vocabulary.

* You know what would really boost one of those designer collections up a level, really make their looks catch on? If the girls smiled once in a while! They always look so darned surly it's downright depressing -- they have plenty to be happy about, if you ask me, and they probably have lovely smiles. With the money they make, I'd be surprised if they hadn't gotten some orthodontic work done.

It wouldn't hurt them to eat something once in a while, either. I bet they'd feel much more smiley after a big bowl of cheesy hotdog noodle-bake, I tell you what.