Move over moto – the elusive “get” is the varsity jacket!

The elusive "get" for a teenager: the Varsity Jacket

The elusive “get” for a teenager: the varsity jacket

If you’re a teen, there is one item of clothing highly coveted: the varsity jacket. Perhaps it’s because I am reading Ilene Beckerman’s book, Love, Loss, and What I Wore, which I reference here, but I have been thinking a lot about what clothes mean to us at certain times in our lives. And so there was an interesting moment during my morning walk, when I saw three high-school-aged girls walking ahead of me. At first glance I thought one of the girls was wearing a varsity football jacket and assumed it had been given to her by her boyfriend. As I walked I thought about gender roles and labels and pride and self-acceptance. I wondered why girls sometimes see themselves through the accomplishments of boys and why wearing someone’s varsity jacket means so much in high school. And then, as I caught up with the group and put my glasses on I saw the sweet truth: the girl wasn’t wearing a boys’ varsity football jacket at all. She was wearing her own varsity softball jacket … her own.

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