The American Study Abroad Girls are everywhere suddenly. I guess they were always lurking, but maybe wearing black J.Crew pea coats, so I didn't notice.
Now, they've sprung forth like sparkly, beaded daffodils, their fringe-y ponchos blowing like petals in the wind. With the headscarves and the peasant skirts, the flip flops, the crochet with sequins--everything colored, everything printed.
And my god, the t-shirts with ironic phrases. "Gettin' Lucky in Kentucky"? Good for you! But do we need to know that "Jesus Loves You," too? IF YOU'RE STILL WEARING A TRUCKER HAT, EVERY PARISIAN IS THINKING THERE IS A DISTINCT POSSIBILITY THAT JESUS DOES NOT, IN FACT, LOVE YOU.
Everytime I pass one of these girls, I have the urge to grab her by the arms, like the imaginary illustrator in an old Donald Duck cartoon, and erase, oh, just ELEVEN of her layers. I know you, Study Abroad Girl. You are my kin. So it is with the greatest love and compassion that I say:
IF YOUR NAME BE NOT MARY KATE, WEAR YE NOT ALL THINE ACCESSORIES AT ONCE.