Friday, April 21, 2006

Slimbo's Fashion Tips: Repeat Offenders

The metrosexual thing hasn't really taken off in New Orleans. We're a little too provincial. But there is one demographic that consistently bucks that trend: Tulane students. Many come from the Northeast and travel in a fashion world dominated by the trends of New York City. This disparity sometimes causes confusion. Wednesday, as I was sitting outside the coffice (which is, at this time of year, Tulane grad-student central), I noticed the man sitting just inside the window from me. He was dressed to the nines:
  • Hair gelled just so.
  • Little, angular, pearlescent-framed glasses.
  • A decidedly fancy, long-sleeved, button-down cotton shirt with an elaborate red filigree pattern against a cream backing.
  • Boot-cut jeans with just the right amount of "distressing," a noticeable whisker, and elaborately detailed back pockets.
  • High-end, black leather "sneakers" with yellow stripes.
I immediately, unthinkingly assumed he was gay. This was (I thought) confirmed when his "partner" sat down across from him sporting:
  • Hair gelled forward into a little peak above the forehead (the official hairdo of Gay Nation).
  • A just-so tee shirt.
  • Capri pants paired with flip flops.
Then they came outside for a cigarette break, and through various aspects of their interaction and conversation (including a discussion of a recent trip to a strip club) I came to the conclusion that they were almost certainly not gay, but simply dorky law students from the big city who read a whole lot of Details magazine.

So far so good - nothing but a bit of big city, little city, lost-in-translation fun. But now things get weird. Yesterday, the first man (he of the pearlescent glasses and bootcut jeans) was back at the coffice, and he was wearing the exact same outfit as the day before. And it wasn't a walk-of-shame, wild night and straight back to studying kind of thing. The hair was freshly gelled. Everything was neat and tidy. Clearly he had gone to bed the night before, putting everything away on its proper hanger, woken up the next morning, taken each item down, re-donned it, and headed back out into the world. Bizarre. Did Details not cover this point?

"Foul!" you cry. "I know you, Slimbolala, and you wear the same goddamned thing every day of the year." True, but mine is a uniform (a self-imposed uniform, but a uniform nonetheless). And as a uniform should be, it is aesthetically neutral. The elements are very plain and unspecific (and besides, I don't literally wear the same thing every day - I just have a closet full of identical items). This man's outfit was very specific and, consequently, not viable for frequent re-wearing. That ensemble needed a bare minimum of a week before making a reappearance (although I would recommend at least two - maybe even a month - or never - never might work). A day? Certainly not.

Slimbo's Tip: So what's today's lesson? An outfit may be worn with a frequency inversely proportional to its fanciness. In other words, if you're going to be a fancy boy, don't be the same fancy boy every day.

Next Up: Pleated pants and why a puffy crotch is not a good thing.*

* This is the part where I insult something you're wearing causing you to hate me and never read my blog again.

Ask and ye shall receive.

11 comments:

  1. Perhaps, the man is also an Einstein fan, and has picked his ensemble toujours. However, I was thinking of Venn diagrams again, and the set of people who would read Details probably has very little overlap with the set of people who would be Einstein fans. Throw the set of Tulane/Loyola law students in there, and my theory has been blown to hell.

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  2. "Ensemble toujours" - thank you! Now I have a high-falutin' term for me wearing the same goddamned thing everyday. Hey, and he's an INTP too! You know, Einstein and me, we have soooo much in common.

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  3. For a guy from a place where the "Queer Eye" thing hasn't taken off, you have got that catty queen shit DOWN.

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  4. Didn't Einstein have his clothing picked out for him everyday by his wife or caretaker?
    FF = x/L where FO is the Fancy Factor of the outfit and L is the number of days that it should/can be worn. x could be the unknown sexual preference or the weird chromosone.

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  5. Very nice use of the term "whiskering"!

    You get bonus points for that.....

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  6. Cattiness comes naturally to me. I require no TV show. And, thank you. I was rather pleased my use of` "whiskering".

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  7. Anonymous10:56 AM

    "Aesthetically neutral," you'd have us believe?

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  8. I stand by my claim of aesthetic neutrality, but I'm a little confused because I'm not sure if you're the same Anonymous who always posts as Anonymous and I harrass for doing so, or if you're a different and truly anonymous Anonymous. Depending on the flavor of anonymity, my elaboration might vary.

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  9. I'm late commenting, but, being a homo in New York City, I must chime in (for the official queer eye for the straight guy factor)...I think your rule of thumb makes perfect sense. Fancy lads should be warned: the fancier the duds, the higher the stakes, which mean no repeats in two weeks. Dudes who wear grey or brown everyday, you're off the hook, but at least have a colorful personality.

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  10. By the way, when I said "colorful personality" earlier, I mean you're happily in the green.

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  11. Oh, good. Now I can label my rule as "Officially Certified: Gay Approved".

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