Monday, September 21, 2009

White Guys Can't Dress

Between The Jimi Hendrix Experience and Cream, these two seminal bands in the history of rock forged the foundations from which 'alternative' rock could spring from. Not that they weren't popular to warrant the moniker 'pop' but they assaulted the audience with sound and skill as core business, the Beatles certainly experimented but they sprang from lets face it, pretty namby pamby music before Helter Skelter saw the light of day.

Whilst everyone has heard of the fab four, much fewer know who Cream are. They outsold the bible, they had the first album ever to be certified platnum. So Why? Why aren't they on par with the Beatles?

from wikipedia

I think this picture answers it. Cream the first ever supergroup, whilst notoriously awesome at the triple simultaneous solo, where also notoriously unphotogenic. Unlike the fab four.

I think Cream are cool, because they were three unattractive guys, that looked like they had gotten their clothing from a bowls club lost and found and were fucking awesome at playing drums, bass and guitar.

The clothes, were quite radical then, rebellious, non-conformist. They even had a naive eastern influence. Synthetic fabrics had only recently been invented, along with teenagers. Cream split in 1969, when Kennedy was shot, Robert hadn't been, Martin Luther King neither.

The penny drops, Martin Luther King was still alive, which meant the civil rights movement was only just picking up, White people were still clearly the master-race in the 1960s. Appropriating black peoples music and fashion was blatent in the formers case (reinventing was preferable to listening to it) and unheard of in the later case. Just think, in the 60's Indians were setting the fashion trends.

50 years on, it simply isn't the case anymore. White people don't have the excuse of segregation. Skinny leg pants and tucked in shirts with no belts is no longer a massive improvement on what people were wearing 10 years ago.

10 years ago, people - *white* people were wearing big pants, baggy shirts, flannel, 18-hole doc martins, chucks, vans, they carried canvas or schoolbags around that they wrote all over in sharpies, facial hair was the goatee, not the ironic moustache, girls wore tracksuit pants that didn't tuck into their arse crack, eyebrow rings, etc.

It was like a subtle version of punk without all the conformity and pretentiousness. there were influences from the hip-hop community, and influences from punk and grunge.

It is now possible to have a moustache and not be masculine. Sure one could claim that moustaches have always been pretty gay, but I mean the average white man on the street with a pea-coat, skinny leg jeans, pointy school-boy shoes and an 'ironic' moustache (which I concede, it is) is far more effeminate than another rock icon Freddie Mercury. Fuck they are more effeminate than George Michael.

But I know, I know, this just sounds like your personal preference. And furthermore people who know me from high-school probably would point out I've always been a stick in the mud when it comes to fashion and whats in. They'd probably suggest that everyone dressed like me, I'd be climbing into skinny legged jeans and school shoes faster than Joe Jackson can plug his new business in a Eulogy.


But maybe, I'm more concerned about the survival of a group of men that are willingly submitting to emasculation. Masculinity itself is under threat, we will regress to the kind of unrealistic self-image crisis that plague women rather than bringing them up.

So here is my objective measure. I call it the Alley-discomfort Index. You are walking down an Alley, and you are alone and suddenly you are confronted by someone walking in the opposite direction. It's night, it's late, you're alone and suddenly there's another white guy in the alley heading towards you.

Now your discomfort can be rated on a level of 10 - -10 that is, 10 being where at maximum safe distance you pretend to look at your watch, remember you have forgotten something and sprint ungracefully in the opposite direction. 7 is optimal, you want to be uncomfortable enough to hold your breath and keep your eye on the guy for sudden moves as you pass each-other.

The 0 is bad, if you are dressing so as to illicit no tension in the scrotal area of someone approaching you. Worst though is -10, this is where the guy is such a poontang that you contemplate mugging him, because they look like you could snap them like a twig, even though you aren't really a violent person. If they are dressed to a -10 on the Alley-discomfort index, they really should not be walking down an alley without accompaniment by a girl in pointy looking stillettoes.
The only thing literally keeping them safe is your inexperience at mugging people, and more crucially the clean up afterwards.

Some examples, this is about a 7, it's right:

This is a -10 maybe a -9 (currently in vogue):

And this is a 10, probably going too far:

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