Sunday, 28 February 2010
I've always had mixed feelings about it. Too early and it can confuse. Too late and it is a waste of time and patronising. And then there is the problem of how to present it and how much information you impart.
I remember being shown a film at school one very hot day in the Sixth Form. We were crammed into a hot room with the curtains drawn and sweltered while we watched the film.
It was about VD. Or STD's as they are known now. In colour too.
I fainted when the pictures of the Syphilitic sores came on and had to be carried out of the classroom.
I was touched by the fact that no-one poked fun afterwards. In fact everyone was so tactful and nice. We are talking teenagers here. I suspect that many of the others must have come close to falling over and maybe welcomed my distracting collapse.
I gained most of my knowledge away from school. I suppose you could call them 'practicals' and got a few surprises. I was shocked to find out just how far round the vagina is. For some reason I imagined it 'at the front' amongst the pubic hairs and remember fumbling one evening with my finger travelling what seemed like forever between a poor girls legs until I finally found it.
I wonder how Granddaughter will learn. Gradually I hope.
She likes the comedy series 'Friends'. It can be quite adult and is fairly open about sex but not in your face. There was one episode where one of the girls goes upstairs to see a neighbour. The sounds coming from the room made it obvious what they are doing. Moaning, rhythmic noises. You get the drift.
'They're having sex aren't they' came the triumphant comment when Granddaughter watched it.
And sometimes when two of the characters are flirting and alone and things are leading up to............you know.....she'll pipe up and say, 'They are going to have sex aren't they', smiling knowingly.
I wonder how much 'knowing' there is.
I wonder how many surprises she gets.
I hope they're nice. Mine were in the main.
Your emotions are on overdrive. Your eyes well up at the drop of a hat. One tactless remark upsets you yet others can go unnoticed.
At times of stress it happens. Well, it does with me.
The stress can be positive. It can be negative or even a little of both. It can be work related or personal.
I've got that jittery thing going on now. It is mostly positive and strangely quite enjoyable. All my emotions are clearer and not muted as they so often are. Maybe I should stay like that. I suspect some people are like that most of the time.
Mine is down to this new job and the steep learning curve along with the nature of the job itself.
Stress can be good if you can cope with it. It can be exciting.
However, if the stress is caused by the negatives in life it is very debilitating. I have a friend who may be experiencing the brittle jittery thing for all the wrong reasons.
My heart goes out to that friend.
Saturday, 27 February 2010
One method they have to get us used to it is to have a trainer making a mock call from another room whilst one of us answers as though it is real and goes through the whole process..............with the rest listening in and creating their own logs.
Being 'One of the Rest' is fun. You can pick up the mistakes the poor Call Taker makes and have the comfort of concentrating on the screens without having to talk at the same time.
Being the Call Taker is nerve wracking with an audience listening in and as close to a live call as you can get without it being one.
Yes, I made my mistakes on my turn too but it is coming together.
.........but my hands shook.
Apparently my voice sounds calm even when I'm shitting myself.
I found it very moving. Each call was a little story of distress that was both personal and, given the number of calls, universal.
A child having a nasty asthma attack, the mother too distraught to deal with it on the phone and having to rely on a friend..
A woman with severe chest pains you can hear moaning in the background; her daughter trying to stay calm whilst on the phone.
An overdose; I cannot go into that.
And so it went on. The young woman I sat with handled them all with aplomb and got a buzz out of being part of a system that provides support to people in dire need.
They have a wonderful set up that allows them to open up page upon page of information that depends on what answers they get. This allows them to give immediate advice and is sent to the Ambulance Crew to prime them before arrival. Brilliant.
I have the utmost admiration for the people who deal with these calls.
I got home feeling quite emotional.
Thursday, 25 February 2010
Thank goodness I wasn't the target. Poor Grandma was the victim.
'Well, women produce eggs and men produce sperm and these eggs and sperm meet to make a baby.'
You can see where this is going. Luckily Granddaughter didn't ask the obvious.........'How do they meet?'
No doubt that will come later.
The little bugger knows there is something that goes on that is rather exciting but does not understand what it is. So she asks risque questions and observes the embarrassed answers she gets.
I've normally worked either when I want to or 9 'til 5. The only shifts I've ever worked have been in an evening which, to me, is fine. If I wasn't working I'd be reading, watching telly or here.
Now I'm posting at 5.30 am and have been up half an hour already.
I'll have lunch at 11 and some tea at 4. I'll be back home for that.
Last night I went to bed at 8.00 pm, got up again at 10.30 or so, went back to bed at midnight and here I am.
...........and this is because I start work at 7.00 am; not an unusually strange hour.
Lord knows what I'll be like on a 9.00 pm to 7.00 am shift.
Tuesday, 23 February 2010
She paused to give Mum time to see the offending material before continuing,' And look they're trying to hide their boobies with their hands.', referring to the way models splay their fingers suggestively over their breasts in mock coyness.
'They aren't doing that very well are they'
Sad people with mental health issues who are not severely affected enough to be kept under constant supervision. People who live at home but with some kind of support; and with access to a phone.
They'll sometimes ring a helpline for company. Occasionally the three 9's to get themselves locked away, or at least some attention.
They become 'regulars' and many are regarded with some affection. Some require visits from the bobbies on the ground and become their regulars too.
Mostly old they eventually stop. Usually because they have died.
One Policeman found out in time that a sweet old lady he often visited had died. I say 'in time'; in time to go to her funeral.
He was the only one there.
Sunday, 21 February 2010
Would you go on telly to be interviewed and shed tears when recounting a personal tragedy only to see your poll ratings increase as a result.
That's what has happened to Gordon Brown according to the Sunday papers.
Cynics might say it was deliberately timed. It does happen to be election year.
Now he is being examined for supposed temper tantrums.
It's going to be a bloody and dirty election I fear.
I say 'top end' for the whole thing is an iceberg. The extreme forms of Domestic Violence are what we hear about but there is so much more.
The term 'Domestic Abuse' covers it all more effectively than 'Domestic Violence'; after all the threat of violence can be just as frightening as the violence itself and we can cause so much hurt through non-violent means too.
Many of those I know, including some close to me have experienced one or more forms of Domestic Abuse. Many of you who read this will have too.
When does regrettable behaviour become abuse?
A husband who puts his fist through a door in a fit of temper in front of his family leaving a hole for all to see.
A wife who threatens to leave home after a row and ostentatiously packs her bags in front of her children; them begging her to stay.
A mother spying on her naked teenage son...................and then telling him.
Are they abuse?
If repeated definitely yes.
Otherwise I'll leave you to judge.
In this victim obsessed society I suppose we could all claim to be the victims of abuse. If that's the case then the obverse is true.
That we are all potential abusers.
Saturday, 20 February 2010
We went there this morning and enjoyed yet another stroll followed by a visit to the farm shop they have.
I must record this though. Within the grounds there is a little dell. A pond with a path bordering one side and an old skeleton of a wall with a window in it. The remains of a medieval abbey or similar place. We always find our way there.
I imagine ghosts here.
It's a place where I may ask for my ashes to be scattered over.
Then my ghost may linger and gaze out of that window forevermore.
Our living room is a 'Room with a View' and one of my favourite films is 'Rear Window'
I have, though, refrained from buying a telescope.
Yesterday I got to do some close-up nosey parkering.
A canteen is a funny place. People come and go. It is a communal place where people join together to eat. OK, join together is stretching it. They all enter a room that happens to have access to food and eat. In the canteen where I go the tables are great big round ones with 8 chairs around them. There are enough to cater for hundreds from all over the place; Police, staff and outsiders too.
And what does everyone do? Well, of course, you know what they do. They all go to separate tables unless they are a part of a team or group of people who know each other. Yesterday morning I did just that. I was alone and after collecting my breakfast I searched for a table that was empty and sat down to eat in silence while I watched Sky News on the wall tellys.
Within a few minutes the unthinkable happened. An attractive woman in her forties sat down AT THE SAME TABLE directly opposite me. No eye contact but she had chosen a table with someone sitting at it over and above others that were empty. It wasn't hugely busy.
It's unusual when people do that. Mostly they like to maintain some kind of space. Why had she done that? Well, this women had some connection. For the last three mornings we had arrived at the car park within minutes of each other and parked next to each other and then done the eye contact thing. So maybe that's why she felt comfortable doing what, for most, is usually avoided.
After a few minutes we were joined by one of her colleagues. An ordinary looking man in his late forties or so, who started talking about an extraordinary thing. He had hired an Australian sheep shearer for his flock...............wey hey................I was all ears.
Neither acknowledged my existence as he proceeded to tell her all about his hobby. She was fascinated as was I. I lingered over my bacon butty pretending to watch Sky News.
Then they started talking about retiring. How many years. How they were looking forward to it. It was obvious that whatever job they were both doing was a mere sideline to their lives. Yet these jobs were taking up such a large part of those lives as they do for most of us. They seemed to resent having to be there and having to work.
And how typical of so many people that they wish their working lives away so they can be free of 'work'. I bet neither of them is looking forward to Monday.
On this sunny Saturday afternoon I look forward to the rest of today, tomorrow AND Monday when I am back at work.
It is a long time since I have spent a Sunday night resenting having to work the following day.
There have been times when I wanted to pack in the job I was doing.
So I did and found something I liked.
Now I don't really want to retire. All that will mean is that I will be nearer the end of my life and since I love life I don't want that to happen.
How silly to spend your time wishing it away.
Friday, 19 February 2010
How do you define friendship?
Are you one of those who has hundreds of Facebook 'friends'? Are you one of those Facebook 'friends'?
Do you use the term 'mate' freely. A mate is a friend isn't he.........or she?
Friend. A word used, I think, a little too freely. I know lots of people. Most of them I like. I am friendly with dozens of them.....................but are they friends?
So what is a friend? I'll rephrase that. What do I think is a friend? After all it is only my opinion.
A friend is someone who I can trust. Someone who I feel comfortable with. Someone of a similar intelligence to me, similar humour. Someone I can respect, admire. A special kind of empathy.
The thing is, I like most people. But I don't trust many of them. So trust is maybe the most important.
I trust those close to me, my family and a handful of friends who I can share stuff with in the knowledge that it is safe. They amount to single figures in number and that's how I like it.
So my friends are people who I can open up to and feel totally at ease with. They are people who I maybe won't see for weeks at a time but when I do see them it is as though we met the day before. They are people who accept me for who I am and do not judge me........as I don't judge them.
They are the kind of people who will dash out to meet me at the drop of a hat and then realise they have got the wrong day or whatever.....and then blame themselves and not me for being vague.
Or they are the kind of people who ring me after what seems too long a time and sheepishly ask my forgiveness for leaving it so long without accusing me of being the one who couldn't be arsed to ring.
Ah, I think that's it. People who I can forgive and will forgive me as well as that mutual trust and that unquestioning willingness to put out on both sides. That's trust again innit.
Wednesday, 17 February 2010
Then I found myself going through a section of road that had been altered which made me later and all of a sudden it became 9.35 am; I'm supposed to start at 9.
Suddenly it was 11.25 and I knew that was bollocks. I was in a dream so I stopped the car, which turned into a bicycle, got out to a bemused Mrs AWB, threw myself on the ground and rolled around to wake myself up.
It took too long and for a moment I thought I was trapped in a dream that had become a nightmare.
Then I woke up...................Phew!
Tuesday, 16 February 2010
But, for once I will for false modesty is as unbecoming as constant showing off..........or bragging.
When you think of 999 or 'the three 9's' as it is sometimes referred to, there is quite a chain.
As part of our training, on Friday our little half dozen went over to a Despatch Centre. Ours will be a simpler job in one way. We deal with calls one at a time and once done with, pass them on so as to leave ourselves free for whatever the public throws at us on the next call. In one sense it is more straightforward; one call at a time and just a one to one with the caller. In another sense it is more stressful; the unknown and unpredictable quality being the thing.
The Despatchers have a different pressure. They will deal with two or more jobs at once. They have to find the officers to deal with what we send and then guide them in with whatever information they can get from us and the databases. They have to prioritise based on this information. Technically it is harder and emotionally they have one thing we will get little of; frustration. Trying to make the best out of limited resources and getting the various police officers and their command teams to respond properly whilst interpreting the stuff they get from us; pigs in the middle.
They work in pairs and the two I spent time with were very good. Bright, intelligent men who tried to provide a service against the odds. They both said they couldn't do the job I am going to do; dealing front line with the idiots who phone up.
We didn't get many. My job will be, in part, to filter them out so as not to use up valuable resources. My future colleagues were obviously doing their job well that day. The Despatchers got to deal, mostly, with the genuine stuff; the armed robberies; the domestic violence......and more.
One call came in that showed how important my role will be. I cannot go into details but this call resulted in 3 teams being sent out, one armed. The Despatcher had to do this based on the information he had from the Call Taker.
But when it all came out there was one piece of information that was wrong. If it had been correct only one unit was needed.......and no armed units either.
Wasted time. Wasted resources that could have been better used elsewhere. How frustrating. In the heat of the moment mistakes are going to be made and our mistakes will result in wasted effort.............and needless suffering or even, on rare occasions people dying.
Utterly fascinating and frightening too.
A small insight into the job. I'll stop before I bore you any more.
Oh, I nearly forgot. The bragging. The showing off.
Where does that come in?
Well, yesterday, our trainers got an email from the Supervisor of the Despatch Centre; a hard bitten, street-wise middle-aged guy who remind me of those Lieutenants you get in the American cop shows. You know, hard as nails but a soft heart. A great bear of a man. Lovely guy.
He had sent a testimonial about us; how professional we had been, how keen, how interested, how knowledgeable we had been. And how impressed the Despatchers we had paired up with had been.
Apparently this was a first. We were the first to get such feedback. Not to say that other had been bad. Just that we had stood out.
We all have doubts, we all worry. But maybe we aren't so bad after all.
Maybe we are rather good.
It's not often you get a positive note placed on your record BEFORE you actually start your role.
Sunday, 14 February 2010
And bump into them we did. We had done a full circuit of the grounds whilst he had managed to delay and stall and had only got as far as the house. His undocked tail was wagging though, and he had learnt the ropes, well sort of, of walking on a lead. We went up to him and introduced ourselves. He was a little coy to start with but soon snuggled up to sniff and lick our hands. He didn't seem much bigger than one of my hands. His jaunty enthusiasm made us all smile.
Later I saw one of his owners take him into his hands and tuck him into his coat to keep warm. That made me happy; that he had owners who would care for him and obviously loved him.
Last night Mrs AWB dreamt of puppies and this morning was looking through various websites at the Jack Russell pups.
If we got a dog it would probably be one of them. They seem bright. They have neat short hair and don't seem to be so inbred that they become prone to specific ailments in the way so many breeds do.
A proper doggy dog.
But we won't get one. We both work and it would be unfair.
Strange and rather sweet, though, how a tiny little animal can have such a warming effect.
Friday, 12 February 2010
I was in my uniform. As I got out of my car a couple of teenage boys walking past turned around to have a proper look at me, 'Yes it is' I overhead one of them say as he caught sight of my badge.
I filled up, went in to pay. The guy at the counter, who knows me, never took his eyes of the badge. Normally we banter happily away with plenty of eye contact.
All they saw was the uniform. In it, I am a symbol of authority even though I am not a Policeman. Not everyone is comfortable with that symbol either.
I felt a little uncomfortable.
Next time I'll go get changed and then get my petrol. Or take a top coat to hide the badge.
Wednesday, 10 February 2010
Imagine those words being announced in the style of a Bingo Caller.
Or better, PROnounced as though by a God like figure in some 1950's epic with the likes of Charlton Heston.
It's how long Mrs AWB and I have been married.
14th February 1976; way back in the last century. Thirty Four years ago on Sunday.
I remember that day. A bright, crisp day. I remember going to pick up the button holes; pink and white carnations. I remember my new suit, my new (awful) hair cut, Mrs AWB's lovely suit. The registrar with the wonky teeth.
And a lot more. It's all there in my mind.
We got tied in the local registry office. Even then we were atheistic in our tendencies and recoiled at the hypocrisy of most of our contemporaries who got married in church even though they never went.
And one third of a century later?
Well, without my wife I wouldn't be the man I am now.
Tuesday, 9 February 2010
Or let's put it another way. When you write your blog how much do you reveal?
There are some things I don't want to tell you about.
There are those areas I cannot talk about.
And then there are one or two I dare not mention.
So, does that make my blog dishonest? I could be, when I post my missives that can appear so revealing, merely be applying a smoke screen to disguise the real me. Posturing? Posing? Presenting an illusion to kid you all...........and maybe me too.
Is a blog that fails to reveal all a lie? Does it compare with, let's say, a description of an Elephant that fails to mention all that is an Elephant. A description that doesn't mention its size and its big ears. Everything else could be true and you could talk for hours about their habits and much about their physical attributes, especially the trunk
But imagine listening to someone describing an Elephant when you had never seen or heard of one. Difficult I know. But imagine no mention of size or big ears. What would you have in your mind? A grey pig-like creature with a long trunk?
So, dear reader, when I describe my life and the things that I do and experience maybe you should bear that in mind.
I might just be that Elephant in the room and not the funny piggy thing.
Monday, 8 February 2010
Even the bonny canteen lady commented. It was my turn to blush.
Back in our training room I posed and cat-walked;
'So girls, I think the belt line is just about right, don't you?' breathing in to show the remnants of a waist.
'The shirts are such wonderful quality', all the while trying to make my tummy seem smaller, my chest larger. Very tiring.
'My bum doesn't look too big either does it' whilst twirling to show off my less than firm buttocks.
'The colour of the tie and trimmings is perfect for my complexion' as I turned to show off my profile.
and so on......
Strangely their own talk of how the uniform does or doesn't fit them seems a little more muted.
And when they do pipe up with some comment I immediately join them.
Take last week. We started the week with the Police National Computer; a difficult subject to make interesting. We all became a little brain dead despite the best efforts of our trainer, a sweet man originally from the States. Without him it would have been dreary.
Then we had a couple of days on listening and questioning skills interspersed with hilarious recordings of real calls; the old lady with constipation or the woman with period pains. And others.
By Friday afternoon we were in a comfort zone; looking forward to the weekend and generally relaxing.
Then our training team landed it on us.
'We'll have some practicals' Meaning we would light up all our screens and applications, don our headphones and take turns to ring each other with realistic examples.
Eh? We flapped and panicked. We hadn't looked at the main log reporting system for some days and when faced with it after that kind of gap we were, shall we say, crap.
If those calls had been real people would have died.
I knew enough to know what kind of mistakes I was making and when we finished we were shell-shocked.
We had come a long way but had oh so much more to do. We went home a little chastened. It's like learning to drive; all about coordination; understanding and working the systems whilst listening and talking on the phone.
When I compared notes with what the others had done I'd not done too badly; but I wasn't happy, even though the trainers assured us that we had done fine.
This morning we all turned up early and practiced before our nine o'clock start. We played with the applications and remembered what we'd been taught and learned to feel more comfortable with the whole thing.
One of the trainers turned up to tell us we had been too hard on ourselves.
Well maybe, but that Friday afternoon ambush had done its job. It had focused us on what we needed to do without any extra input from the trainers. We had done it ourselves.
They had done their job and done it well.
Sunday, 7 February 2010
Avert your eyes if you are of a sensitive disposition.
On a serious note I'll make this observation. We've all been looking forward to getting our uniforms. It is giving us a sense of belonging and enhancing our view of the job as something a little special.
On the other hand can a uniform sometimes create too much of a sense of separateness from the rest of society?
And then..................before I started to dance.............without so much as a bye or leave I dashed upstairs and demanded a cuddle from Mrs AWB and told her I loved her which brought on her usual raised eye brows and pretence at embarrassment. I say pretence because I know she likes it. The attention; the effort; the spontaneity.
But she never does it in return. I wish she would. When I think about it I've never really known a woman to be overt like that. Not many men for that matter.
They'll let you know what they think via subtle nuances. Mrs AWB does that. Unfortunately, being a man, I sometimes miss them.
Subtlety is nice but there are times when that silly direct approach is the best way.
We aren't so reticent about saying negative things.
Last week we talked, at work, about how most people tend to blather on about bad service yet remain quiet about good service. We'll all moan about some crap service in a restaurant and maybe complain.
I must be odd for I don't really do that. When trying to recall moments of good service as opposed to bad I was the only one who remembered more good than bad.
I'll thank people for it too. Do you? Apparently we are more likely to complain about bad service than celebrate the good. How sad. Bad news travels faster than good. If someone you know, even love, does something bad you will tell them...............do you tell them when they do something good?
Last Monday I wandered into the canteen for breakfast. The bonny assistant was there, smiling and throwing a ray of sunshine on an otherwise bleak morning.
I thanked her. Her smile broadened and she even went a little pink. Most of us wouldn't do that. Why not? I wasn't making a pass, I was just expressing a nice sentiment. The ray of sunshine shone brighter.
We English are known for our reticence. Hmmm, that is only partly true I think. We are not so reticent when whinging amongst ourselves about something negative are we. Amongst such mutterings cynicism breeds like a fungus in the dark.
I just think it should be more balanced.
If someone is doing a good job, tell them.
If you like what they are doing, tell them.
If you like someone, tell them
If you are fond, tell them.
And most of all if you love them, tell them too.
We all like to be told. Isn't it sad that most of us hold back from telling others the nice stuff whereas we are quick to reproach. If we were just that little bit more forth coming about the positives as well as the negatives the world would be a sweeter place. It would kill off cynicism for one thing. And a lot of self doubt too.
Oh, yes........I remember reading the Sunday Papers. Shit. Must be Monday morning! I'd better get into my Jimmy Jams; Mrs AWB will think I've been sleeping fully clothed.......I'd woken up in the spare room. Hang on; just where rammah? I only came round properly whilst having a pee.
We all get moments like that. This was weird in that it went on for 3 or 4 minutes. A long time to be disorientated.
Saturday, 6 February 2010
With us it tends to happen when we fancy a snack rather than a meal and so don't have some image of something to focus on and help us make our choice.
Maybe it's because we aren't hungry enough.
Today we wandered around York. I like York. Yes, it's a bit touristy at times but there is enough originality to interest me. We used to live just North of the city. Today there were loads of people playing music; individuals, duos and a group playing folk music too. Lovely. We spent some money and decided to have a light meal somewhere.
That's when we nearly came unstuck. Neither of us wanted to make the decision as to where to go. Once that might have lead to arguments but today we bit our tongues and kept looking in a half hearted kind of way.
All the places on the main concourses were full and somehow didn't seem to entice us in. Noise maybe? The crowded atmosphere that seemed to permeate them? Or maybe the same old same old menus? But they all seemed so full anyway.
It wasn't just that; it was the fact that these were the places EVERYONE was going to; as though people were saying, 'Oh, I'm hungry' and then jumping into the first eatery they saw. It felt like a tourist treadmill.
So we ambled up some less busy streets and came across some slightly quieter spots.
We found Bobo Lobo, a place with a Latin theme and reasonably priced. The food and ambience were lovely with very attentive service too. A tiny little barman performed some cocktails to a giggling gaggle of girls whilst a group of Geordie Harpies screeched and howled and made me realise how covens of drunken women can be even more frightening than men. Certainy a lot noisier. The atmosphere was transformed when they left. We lingered over a peaceful drink and left. The staff got a good tip.
The daft thing is is that it's only a few yards down a street off one of the busiest areas. Yet it wasn't heaving with people; even though it has won awards. Maybe we were just lucky but it might also just show how unimaginative some people are in that they never wander off the beaten track even by a few yards.
Wednesday, 3 February 2010
He took it home and returned the following day wearing it without any great fuss.
Then the four women got theirs. Not so straightforward. Most seemed to need some kind of alteration to fit.
This week two of them turned up wearing their newly altered uniforms and the whole world stopped.
Pockets had been sewn up. Waist lines altered. All sorts had been done. It seemed that the trousers especially had been virtually rebuilt.
And the conversation. I never knew that clothing could be such source of incessant chatter. We are talking about a fleece, trousers and shirts along with tie and epaulets.
Not exactly haute couture.
The girls posed and twirled. I didn't mind; a good excuse to ogle as they are nice to look at. They discussed the minutiae of the shirt collars, the waist line, whether the fleece looked better open or zipped up. How to tie their hair up. What shoes would go with the trousers; whether to get a pair that were a little longer so as to be able to wear discreet heels. All stuff that I, as a man, would never consider. And wouldn't want to. So boring. It went on........and on..............and on.
So I just carried on ogling; but got bored with that.
I've promised them that when I turn up in mine I will return the compliment of interminable chatter about my new clothes.
I may start doing that but I'll give up. I'd feel narcissistic doing so at the length that they did and I have to say that I found the whole thing utterly alien.
From what I gather most women would recoil from a man who was so interested in his own appearance.
After this week's observations on women discussing their own appearance I have to say that that opinion applies to this man.
To be fair they also poked fun at themselves and saw the funny side when I told them what I thought. We all ended up having a surreal conversation about embroidered epaulets. They'll get their own back when I turn up in mine.
When I look at a woman I take in the general shape but then tend to home in on the face. Nice eyes and a nice smile win me over every time. Like most men, I do like looking at the shape and form but it's the face that I'll be ultimately attracted to. And as for the clothes, well, as long as they don't jar.
What she wears is secondary. And if she's too interested in what she is wearing I lose interest.
A case in point is one of the catering staff at our canteen. She wears your typical catering uniform complete with hair net. She's quite tall and probably somewhere in her forties.
She would never wear it out of work and probably considers herself frumpy in it. She's pretty without being a stunner.
But she smiles. Her eyes light up when she does and, to me, she is the highlight of my visits to the canteen. I make a point of saying something to make her smile just so I can see that reaction.
I'd do that whatever she wore.