a) ironic – 3 votesa dead tie. Now I'll go ahead and tell you, I intended for the correct response to be "b) not ironic", and I had the back story all lined up:
b) not ironic – 3 votes
"Tom Selznick is an agoraphobe and social recluse who, despite his spacial and social anxieties, has risen to the position of manager at his local GNC. He grew his first (rather tepid) mustache in 1981 at the age of fifteen, inspired by Tom Selleck, because:But when I read the arguments for the "a) ironic"-camp, I confess, I began to doubt myself. His glasses are a tad too nerdy. The mustache is decidedly "Reno 911". Had my own ironic-attitude-towards-ironic-mustaches—a troublesome meta-irony—unconsciously affected Tom's creation, infusing him with cheeky knowing qualities I never intended,** for though I am the Prime Mover of Tom's sketchpad universe, I am far from omniscient, a mere frail and flawed human (utterly lacking a fulsome and sincere God-beard). Maybe I'm the least qualified to judge his mustache's irony or lack thereof. Maybe I'm not even capable of drawing an irony-free mustache?***
If pressed, Tom would confess that he's never been exactly sure what 'irony' means."*
- Magnum P.I. was cool and looked pretty sharp with that mustache.
- Due to their similar names, Tom has always felt that he shared a mysterious and powerful bond with the star and sought to make this bond manifest in his facial hair. (He was, unfortunately, wrong. There is no such bond.)
And then I thought, frak it, let's just play another round. What about this guy?
a) ironic?Of course it's a package deal, so if the mustache is ironic then so is the mullet and the t-shirt and, no doubt, his very soul. But on the other hand, maybe he's completely sincere, just that dude who's really into the Eagles and hasn't updated his look since he first saw them in concert. I don't know. You tell me.
b) not ironic?
* If pressed, I would confess I'm not always sure I'm exactly sure what it means either. It's one of those words whose meaning is sufficiently nuanced—and overused and abused—that it sometimes slips close to meaning very little at all. (And as Matt points out, what begins as knowing hipster appropriation often trickles down to straightforward mainstream trendiness.) But at present, I can't think of a better word, so we'll just stick with it—and continue to overuse and abuse it.
**This was supposed to be the easy round. Later, we would tackle more complex and confusing mustaches that danced maddeningly around and across the Ironic/Sincere divide.
*** Actually, yes I am. This guy's mustache is entirely sincere.