What is fashion?

Fashion is dictated to us by those who care less about appearance than money, and those who want to rebel against what the dominant social paradigm find sociably acceptable.
Most of us were bought up to comb our hair and tuck in our shirt tails, then someone in the public eye or a young people’s idol was seen without combing their hair and whizz-bang! It’s a new hair style. Suddenly everyone wants this new style. Reminds me of the fable about the king‘s new clothes.

I was running late for work one day, my hair a total mess like I’d had a rough night. I thought to myself, “Oh well, some people think the ragbag look is fashionable so I went with my hair from hell. No sooner did I enter the office then the praise flowed. My coworkers raved about my ‘hair-cut’. The sad thing was, they were serious. When did bad grooming take on cult status?

Then there are the homeboy pants that are too big and hang halfway down the wearer’s bum. These became so fashionable that underwear companies cashed in, the brand of their underpants woven into the exposed elastic band, advertising to the world.

Another surprising trend that I do not understand is the appeal of tattoos. Used to be only criminals and tough guys wore them. Then celebrities adopted some fancy skin inks and bam, tattoos suddenly became fashionable. They started in clandestine areas of the body not normally seen in public, like a dirty secret of the wearer but, as popularity grew, they started to appear in frequently displayed areas. I have always wondered, if there is nothing wrong with tats then why do actors and celebrities cover them up with makeup when on the screen?

How many understand the symbols and words they have needled permanently onto their body? Do people realise that the oriental writing could actually say something like, “I’m a dickhead”? Most people say they got it done one night when they were drunk rather than admit they just made a bad choice that marked them for life.

Now the new celebrity-led trend is for fat butts. Is this just males accepting that their girlfriends have enlarged love tunnels so they can use the back door instead? Once the back door gets overstretched too a large butt can be squashed together to give the same tight feeling. Don’t women realise this is just sexual exploitation?

If all these weird trends are acceptable/desirable to many in today’s society, then why not propose wheelchairs as another ‘in’ accessory? So many people are obsessed with the idea that you might one day walk again rather than accepting you how you are. The only news stories are those where wheelchair users have walked again, not of those who live a normal life in their chair. They’re not news as they have not reached the holy grail … to walk again… even if that ‘walking’ means wearing some bolted on robot suit that allows ‘walking’ at a painful half kilometer per hour.