Everywhere I look I see girls in worn-out jeans. You know the ones I mean — those jeans that couldn’t belong to anyone but the person wearing them. The ones that fall perfectly over your shoes, perch on your hips, leaving you just enough room to sit. In summary: they are your trusty-old-pair-of-jeans, or as I like to call them, the TOPOJs.

My friends all have a pair. And wherever they go, the jeans go too. Be it winter, spring or summer, the jeans are a staple. Without them girls can feel lost, confused and identity-less.

If you are reading this and do not yet recognize your own jeans in the story, let me help you a little. Maybe your jeans are the ones you reach for on Friday night when, after a tiring week of procrastination, you cannot make another decision and find relief in the no-strings-attached TOPOJs.

The problem, however, is that you want to look good tonight. You have a date. Or maybe you don’t, but you intend to come home with one. Your wardrobe is overflowing. You feel guilty about the money you spent on all the clothes you don’t want to wear. You talk to the clothes and apologize. “I’m sorry for leaving you. Please don’t take it personally; it’s not you, it’s me.” The older clothes in your wardrobe are familiar with your tricks. “Don’t bother,” they say to the brand-new skirt (price tag and all). “You’ll probably spend the evening on the bed, all crinkled and twisted.”

Ah the guilt, it’s mounting and mounting, it becomes unbearable. As you think about the new skirt your thighs tighten, your skin begins to itch and you feel self-conscious. Then you think of the jeans and your legs loosen, they feel thin and free. You can see yourself making your way effortlessly through a crowded room, the people parting like the red sea for you and your jeans. Quickly you reach for them and slide them on. It feels good, really good. This is security: I know I exist, because I can fit into my jeans, just as I did yesterday, and the day before, and three years before then.

But not everyone owns a pair of TOPOJs. I don’t own one. Often I think this means that I don’t have a past, that I am without identity. Fortunately, Diesel has provided us no-lost-souls with pre-packaged TOPOJS. At Diesel.com buyers are offered the unique opportunity of designing their own TOPOJs according to the past they envision for themselves. First, you must select a cut. The cut will reflect what sort of work you and your jeans do. So there’s “work all night, they’re tight,” a good choice for the I-was-a-waitress-trying-to-be-an-actress girl. Then there’s the “casual cut for casual labor,” for the outdoor types. Only select this option if you want to remember that summer you spent frolicking in the bushes with the local stable boy. City girls should not attempt to pull this one off, everyone knows you didn’t get past Brooklyn until you came to Yale. Next, pick a style, which Diesel has conveniently organized by emotion. There’s blame, daze, hush, shock and, my personal favorite, guilt. Once again, try to picture your imagined past, and which of these best fits your adopted story. The last choice you can make is the wash of the jeans. This is a two-part option. First, choose a type of faded: sunfaded, brown earth and carbon. If you spent most of your life in the city, then carbon is for you, otherwise fit your story to your wash. Last, but not least, you may choose the degree of fadedness of the jeans. There’s very faded, medium and not at all faded. Think about how old you want your TOPOJs to look and click.

And there you have it, Diesel’s answer to the existential dilemma; no wonder their motto reads “Diesel for successful living.”

Cecilia Morelli is wearing a jean skirt today.