Sunday, September 25, 2005

Is Male Fashion and Oxymoron

Is Male Fashion an Oxymoron

Apparently the plethora of Men’s Health Magazines aren’t enough now there is a plan afoot to market a “Man’s Fashion Magazine”. I have no idea who thought this up but I would guess it is a feminist attempting to blot out any semblance of masculinity or possibly a gender confused male who is attempting to demonstrate his softer side. Who ever is behind this idea certainly isn’t a student of history – fashion or otherwise.

The last radical change in male fashion came as a result of the French Revolution, when the Citizens truncated all of those parasitic aristocrats dressed in fancy satin pants. Of course those aristocrats were replaced by the Egalitarians who were distinguished by there almost total lack of humor let alone any fashion sense. Eventually these precursors to Socialism and Marxism were rapidly treated to the same exercise in truncation as the aristocrats but their basic sense of male fashion remained until it was brought to maturity by Beau Brummel in the early 19th Century. Since that time male fashion has evolved at roughly the same pace that one associates with Darwinian Evolution – that is – tweaks here and there with an occasional mutation that offers some dramatic change, a flash of humor, and a series of photographs that provide hours of amusement to grandchildren. In this category we find a) the Nehru Jacket b) bell bottom trousers, c) tie dye shirts d) leisure suits and of course all of those polyester disco shirts including the gold chains and medallions.

Since this fashion aberration brought on by those flower power rebels who now inhabit our universities (complete with their retro peace symbols, long hair, and drug induced political hallucinations) men have returned to their standard fashionable wardrobe which hasn’t changed very much since Beau Brummel and certainly no major change since 1900. I would say that the majority of (straight) men manage to get by on the same basic wardrobe. Essentially men’s closets and drawers contain the following essentials:
Levi’s ( two pair minimum)
Khaki’s (one pair minimum)
White shirt (several for business types)
Blue dress shirt (several for business types)
A belt – black or brown
Shoes (black wing tips for business types , work boots for others
Pair of casual shoes
Some sweat shirts and sweat pants
A neck tie (several for business types)
Underwear (provided by wife –otherwise optional)
For hunters – some camo
A suit (for business types)
Couple of knit shirts

As you can see a Fashion Magazine for men doesn’t seem to have much of a future unless it is being heavily marketed in San Francisco. And this brings me to the newest thing which I have observed in magazines and the recent (and rare) movie I have attended and that is guys who don’t shave. I’m not talking about guys with beards and mustaches – I’m talking about those guys who look like they just got up and forgot to take a shower. I recently saw a movie that spanned a lengthy period of time but the hero never shaved but never grew a beard either – he just remained perpetually unshaven and dirty looking. Perhaps there is something that I am missing here but I find it hard to believe that women find this unkempt look attractive.

Oh well – perhaps I am showing my age – in any case it ought to be interesting seeing how well a male fashion magazine fairs

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