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Thursday, May 19, 2011

I Rant, You Read! Sagging

I'm trying to think of all the fashion & adornment trends over my years that caused angst, excitement and/or a mixture of both.  When focusing on the necks of the woods of my rearing, my mind leads me to things like the 'status-laden' eightball jacket or the influx of the pseudo-combat ready army field jacket in a bevy of US camo colors.  But what about the donning of neoprene masks that left the early 90's purse-snatching victim with the only recognizable trait being her culprit's beady eyes.  Or maybe even steel-toed Viking boots, the Triple-Fat goose or the shag hairstyle and clipper cuts in the eyebrow.  And ladies let's not forget (lest we repeat) the two-toned hair, nose rings or combat boots worn with hockey jersies complete with knee and elbow pads only for the daring.  It seems that trends, by definition, are always intent on riding the wave of the next, new and noteworthy.  What happens is that the most noteworthy go on to form the style definitions of a decade.  

However, I don't think that any one trend has gone on to become more than it was intended or affected the populus more than sagging.  That is, wearing your pants below your waist so that it exposes your underwear on purpose.  Now while the purpose for every trend might not be easily definable, the outcome of some trends reflect the thought processes (or lack thereof) of its trendsetters.  In this particular case, the adoption of sagging seems a reflection of popular culture.  That's right!  I feel you may have seen sagging first from the 'behind bars' sect but I believe that it persists now due to a sign of the times at how the hastened pace of society and all that we 'über-demand' truly leave power in the hands of the populace. 

Call it what you may.  Indecent, sloppy, non-traditional, hypersexual, shameful or immoral, it only reflects this internet-crazed, 'teeny bopper come millionaire', youth-obsessed, 'individuality rules' culture we're swimming in today.  Let's face it, isn't every word at the top of the previous sentence something that can be applied to society today?  However, as nauseating as it could be for some of you, the words liberating, trendy, rule-breaking, expressionistic and non-judgmental could also apply to society today.  However, I think the antagonists' main argument is that, 'should they?'.    

Sagging, like any abstraction from the standard or commonly understood or accepted norm of dressing, is a kind of rebellion.  It's a rebellion brought on by the realization that one can make their own rules by choosing to sensationalize their POV through the personal medium of dressing and adornment.  This argument calls to mind the angst brought on by dressing liberation of the 60's with peace signs and expressive tees.  Or possibly the slashes, cuts, cheeky political statements and deconstruction of traditional garb in the birth of British punk's seditionaries clothing.  However, what is lost in wardrobe expression today is the fact that because of the quick-changing, fleeting and 'today happened yesterday' attitudes, nothing done seems riddled with any rhyme or reason.  Rather, clothing expression seems obsessed with overexposure in a society that is constantly being forced to expose every visual nook and cranny of it's worth; thereby losing it. There seemed to be more reasons 'why' with trends of yesteryear; now it just seems 'because it's the style' with unexplainable extremes of overexposure.  Popular culture is intent on outdoing itself.

My two-cent take is that if you sag to express indifference to the accepted norm then make it your duty to at least educate yourself as to what the accepted norm is.  Attempt to try to have a lucid reason for why you dress the way you dress.  Be mindful of your 'true' size and proper fit in relation to how your body will look in the clothes.  If you're straight, then be aware of the homo-erotic aspect of drawing attention to your halfway points.  If you're in a work setting then be aware of the professional aspect of dressing to be taken seriously.  If you're a father then be aware of the young eyes watching you.  If you have to have one hand free to hold your pants up or walk at a snail's pace to keep your pants up, then realize how comical you come off.  If you're a bit 'bountiful' and insist on wearing skinny jeans, then for god-sakes take efforts to make sure your abundant flesh remains sheltered.  Now this does not mean that I feel that sagging should be taken to the point of being outlawed.  Clothing and adornment is always of and for the people; for the peoples' choices dictate silhouette, cut and the popular fashion.  People do have the right to wear their clothing the way they want to; it's just that so many of us wish they would choose differently, with more intelligence.  If those individuals realized the 'socio-implications' behind their choices that will be left on their legacies as individuals part of a whole then they'd see how it's oftentimes better to go against the grain with exposing your brain rather than your boxer shorts. 

1 comment:

  1. Very well said. I'm of the belief that if you are showing me & the world the entire top half of your ass covered in Calvins or Polo boxers while in skinny jeans you are trying to draw attention to the same sex. Maybe I'm old fashioned (but I doubt it!)

    Some photos with faces blurred to protect the innocent offenders would be good here, lol

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