To fit in these days, it’s no longer good enough to wear the same clothes as everyone else. You need the same mark.
Had the misfortune to venture into Coventry city centre on a Friday evening a while ago. Aside from the fact the city is pretty much dead nowadays as everyone flocks to Birmingham instead, I was astounded by the fashion sense of the indigenous females. If I didn’t know better I could have mistakenly wandered onto the set of a remake of Thriller.
There didn’t appear to be any fancy dress party going on anywhere so I could only surmise that to be accepted these days, one must:
- wear cutoffs or hotpants with patterned / shredded tights or faux-stockings underneath.
- sport chunky platforms or Ugg boots.
- wrestle into a low-cut crop top; copious quantities of muffin underhang is mandatory.
- employ an ill-fitting push-up bra.
- stick on lashes and thick eyebrows to make it look as if two tarantulas have been marooned beneath toilet brush ends.
- trowel on inch-thick foundation in the wrong skin tone.
Presumably the object of the attire was to either draw attention away from the fact the girls were uniformly ugly or they thought that dressing up like 1980s goth rejects transformed them into sexy man bait. I can categorically state that was not the desired result: approximately five degrees Kelvin on the eroticism scale. Setting fire to yourselves next time might improve matters.
The assumption I drew is that the parents didn’t care what their kids looked like; the parents didn’t know what their kids looked like, or that prevailing fashion trends eclipse any attempt at individuality, radical thought, or common sense.
A bit like tattoos really.
Tat me stupid
Tattoos are also getting beyond a joke now. What started out as the mainstay of the armed forces or gang/tribe membership, spread (as it were) to the porn industry so starlets could be identified on-screen from just a jiggling fold of flesh. The jump to mainstream via the amateur circuit and reality TV ‘celebrities’ was then inevitable.
What was once a one-off event to mark a serious turning point in one’s life or a similar permanent reminder has now degraded into a banal fashion accessory. In this country, it’s starting to feel like more people than not now have them; and not just little hearts, flowers, stars or symbols, but huge designs like angel wings on the shoulder blades, or quotes, names and stupid pictures adorning necks, chests, arms, even entire legs.
And the ultimate travesty? Just like buying your kid a mobile phone, parents are allowing their offspring to get tats so they can fit into their social circles. I must have spotted about a quarter of the children I passed in the city with them; even some under fives had temporary ones, which is a bad habit to get them into.
There are a whole bunch of reasons I can think of not to get a tattoo:
- 99.899% are ugly or tacky.
- It’ll look ridiculous when my skin is all floppy at age 90.
- I’ll look like every other sad chump who follows the trend.
- I can actually remember the name of my wife / child without having to refer to my arm each time I want to speak with them.
- If I decide I don’t want it any more I’m scarred for life with a blotchy red patch instead of merely marked for life with pigment.
- It’s not a symbol of individuality, it’s a symbol of conformance and narrow mindedness.
Don’t get me started on piercings either.
Someone please tell me why it’s important to be like everyone else and permanently defile your skin in this way. I simply don’t get it.