Not laughing at the young

Well, mostly trying not to, I wouldn’t want to give them a complex but sometimes they do make it very hard to keep a straight face.

When I was younger myself, I could be pretty judgmental about the dress-sense and coiffure of young people – but now I am more relaxed and figure it is only themselves they are hurting.  As I was growing up in the 1970s – the decade good taste forgot – I was lucky enough to be dressed by my mother and so no blame can be attached to me for any fashion choices I may appear to have made (though I do recognise the “only following orders” defence has not always been 100% successful).  Today’s youth do not have this defence and are also subject to vastly more photographic and video recording of all their dodgy choices.  I sense significant growth in net embarrassment in the years to come – hence my plan to short embarrassment now.

Among the young and trendy (well, I may be guessing about the latter), the full beard seems to be terribly fashionable at the moment.  So clichéd has this become that entering a menswear department recently I was overtaken by a fit of the giggles and had to leave hurriedly.  Funny though I find it, in this cold weather it is a rather practical choice – but I’m not sure I’m willing to hazard one myself: the combination of itchiness and the large patches of white/grey that it now includes would be too distressing.  I shall continue to try and rock the scarf or buff.

However, it is in the trousers department that the young are most afflicted by the siren voices of the fashion industry.  Trousers have been growing ever skinnier for some time, to the extent that I presume some young folk are unable to bend their legs at all (and sitting down must be a distantt dream, unless one is looking for a career as a counter-tenor).  This trend is particularly distressing as for most of my time on earth, my legs would not have looked out of place in a nest and been ideal for skinny trews.  Sadly, the last few years of heavy cycling have caused them to beef-up somewhat (though not much) so that my thighs and calves are now too large for any slacks that would fit my relatively svelte waist.

We are now used to the “waist” of the trouser resting on the lower quarter of the buttocks with the crotch somewhere around the knees – I presume that like the nutrimatic cup, they are held aloft by Art (though unlike the people of Brontitor, our society will be destroyed by coffee shops).  As a result, despite my advanced age and singular lack of athletic prowess I am confident in my ability to out-run the young as my progress will be free of trouser-related hindrance.

However, recently I have noticed that the trousers worn by hipsters seem to end well above their shoes – even in the shortest folk of that ilk which can’t be easy to achieve.  Again, as I was growing up this was an issue that frequently afflicted me – but once again, I was before my time.

I sense a conspiracy: trousers are now starting several inches lower than normal, end above the ankle and are made of a much narrow cylinder of cloth, i.e. makers of trousers are managing to manufacture their wares with dramatically less fabric but at no reduction in selling price!  The only man getting value for money from his slacks is Simon Cowell – where they start at his armpits and go all the way to the ground – but he can well afford it; the rest of us need to start a campaign for fair prices for our leg-coverings (or move to Scotland where alternatives are available).

Living in colour

For our North American readers, this post’s title comes with a free cut-out-and-keep letter “U”.  Collect two and make yourself a consonant: unless you share my Welsh ancestry, in which case make a new vowel.  But, enough of my feeble attempts at merchandising this blog, and on with the motley.

I am not very adventurous when it comes to having colour in my life – my walls, floors and ceilings are all beige.  I do have a number of artworks on the walls, but with one honourable exception they are also rather muted tonally.

My wardrobe (or to be strictly accurate, its contents) relies heavily on shades of grey (from white to black), more beige and navy blue.  When I’m feeling particularly mettlesome,  I can choose from a couple of (mostly) red T-shirts – but in the main I stick with black and navy (often together, despite clear advice that it’s a dreadful faux-pas).

I refuse to wear black shoes as I dislike dark shades on my feet (though I have no issue with them adorning the pedal extremities of others) and after I saw a documentary which suggested that the Italians only wear black shoes to a funeral, I decided that I could dispense with this particular convention in normal, formal dress.  So my footwear tends to range from light to mid tan – as measured on the Cherry Blossom scale – for more formal occasions and is generally white for sporting activities.

However, its probably in the trouser department but my colour choices have been most limited.  Black, grey and dark blue denim cover pretty much my whole collection of leg coverings – or they did until yesterday.  Given my antiquity, I have decided to heed the words of Jenny Joseph’s Warning.  Fair enough, her poem was about an old woman, but in these days of equal opportunities, I tend to assume that the female includes the male (and vice versa.  Though not, I hasten to add, in the case of changing rooms or public conveniences).

I type this with my legs looking resplendent, clad as they are in a pair of new plum trousers – no, not trousers made from fruit (genus Prunus, subgenus Prunus), but those of a rather attractive shade of purple.  They make me look really rather dishy, at least so far as that is possible given the rather unpromising raw material that my body provides.  Or so I think, but I am not an entirely disinterested party, so I am allowing you, the long-suffering reader, to judge for yourself.  Yes, this will be the first time that the Fish legs have been seen on GofaDM.  If I could ask you all to please imagine a drum roll as you scroll down (yes, I am now adding stage directions to this blog):

BTW: The white socks were chosen to provide contrast and as a callback to my dislike of dark feet.