What does the world cost? Oh well, then we'll just take a small coke.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Fasion #3: The Fashionista

Meet Bill. Bill was a student in my French class last semester but his was the sort of nondescript behavior that rarely makes it to FCN. Bill has, however, seen a mention on these pages before, although the reference was less than flattering.

In case you don't follow hyperlinks, Bill is automatically a weird person because he is one of the few males in this world to choose to study French. He builds on this eccentric base by wearing his red hair ragged in an undecided way. It's as if his barber started to clip it short but stopped when Bill got scared of how it might look. The result was a keritanized collection of hairs that sprouted from his head with all the organization of the business end of a mop.

Bill is thin and frail. His weight puts him in the same category as anorexic Hollywood, but instead of showing off this corps l├ęger with a Mick Jagger top and emo pants, he sports the kind of unremarkable clothing that says "I'm in college, but my mom bought me this shirt and I'm wearing it for the third straight day." He could have dressed like a music store employee and tried to develop an identity around his sub-100 pound frame ("crack fiend on slim fast" is in, or so I read in TMZ); instead he hid his European figure as if in shame.

Bill had a girlfriend. The fact was a continual source of entertainment for the gossips in class who wondered how such a character could possibly scare up female companionship. I'll admit that I was flummoxed and a little jealous of his success. Then I met the girlfriend and everything became clear. She was the portly opposite of Bill and wore the sort of loose flowing garb you might see Arabian Nights. She walked with a pronounced waddle and had a face reminiscent of the woman in the Planter's Peanut ads. She was a soprano (i.e. the fat lady of the opera) and had a personality to match.

Bill lost his girlfriend. He never told me the juicy details, but I knew the loss hit him hard. He said some nasty things about singers and pledged to move on with his life. At first, Bill was his normal undecided self; then things started to change.

Bill came to class one day in a collared shirt. He still had the forty-year old jeans and ratty tennies, but something about that ironed top was a harbinger of future change. Bill started to grow his hair out and added some product to create an intentioned style. He started showering more and his skin looked more clear. One day he stopped wearing jeans altogether and replaced his old pant selection with pressed slacks. Wingtips followed and some days he even wore a blazer or a suit jacket. Bill purchased a belt which lent his outfit an air of completeness and, even though he was still his abrasive self, he started to act more confident. On the day of the final exam, Bill came to class with greased hair in a Georgio Armani suit with shoulder enhancing pads and silk shirt. He was completely out of place with the PJ bottoms and hoodie tops most of the students wore, but he had managed to find an identity and we were willing to look a little under dressed in order to see him develop a style.

I saw the Bill the other day. He is still lighter than Keira Knightley after an hour in a sauna suit, but now his wardrobe doesn't look like an accident. Whereas before Bill had all the aesthetic appeal of a doorknob, his new outfit made him look approachable and interesting.

I imagine Bill will be working as the CEO of a Fortune 500 company before I can get out of General Mills - he certainly dresses for the part.

1 comment:

you can call me batman said...