Spanish woman academic dresses according to stereotype

From an off-the-record report of a departmental seminar somewhere in the UK.

I don’t get to look at huge numbers of women since I stopped working in the strip club, but I wonder if this is regional dress adapted from Manhattan dreaming:

Our eminent Andalucian visitor had obviously just come straight from a “Let’s See Who Can Look Most Typically Spanish Whilst Abroad” contest. She had that frizzy tobacco-coloured long hair that shoots off at 45 degrees making a cone out of her head; a black wooly blouse, a grey box-pleated miniskirt and black tights. I couldn’t see her shoes, but looking under the table to see what lecturers are wearing isn’t a course of action likely to further my academic career. The one thing she lacked was the gold-chained Dolce and Gabbana handbag that seems de rigeur for Spanish girls domiciled here. Our progress through the [subject under discussion] was somewhat laboured, and as I drifted in and out I was trying to recall the formula for the volume of a conic section so that I could at least leave the lecture having practiced a bit of maths and with an estimate of the total volume of her hair.

What we now think of as traditional regional costume only really got going in Europe with the spread of mass production and good, cheap, chemical dyes in the nineteenth century. I think it lasted about as long as our modern all-black routine, with all its mind-not-mounds bullshit. Since everyone else is being ordered to dress drab this year, maybe academics will surprise us and dress like crack whores or baseball heroes, assuming there is a difference.

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  1. Martin says: “Down our way there seem to be three styles; loose and straight with sunglasses perched on top for sexy young things, long, greying and Alice-banded for conservative professional ladies, and the ultimate Andalusian helmet-hair for older rural matrons, this latter being a brittle carapace created with industrial quantities of lacquer and available in tints of blue, burgundy and pink. I’ll try and find an example of the helmet and post it here – perhaps accompanied by the classic square-shouldered cornflake-packet blouse.”

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