Lately, and by which I mean for a couple years now, I’ve been noticing an influx of products that disguise themselves as other things, either because its ironic or novel or gimmicky, or sometimes just pretty LOLtastic. I’ve been trying to decipher what designates each individual product into the particular category, but all I can come up with is personal taste. For example…
Nike makes socks that look like a pair of Dunks. They even have a variety of colors and styles of dunksocks.
Awesome? Yes, and double points if you wear them under an actual pair of matching Dunks creating a rare interaction more formally known as D^2.
Next up there are those zip up hoodies that zip ALL the way up, including zipping the hood over your face. They make a mask-esque garment that gets screen painted over to make you look like a superhero or a BAPE character or Rush Limbaugh, or what I believe may be the root, a Misfits style skeleton.
Awesome? No, but it doesn’t particularly bother me in anyway. These just aren’t my particular style. I’m sure some of those who wear these are legitimate people but I do not think these are acceptable in public past 8th grade. Actually, I would have probably copped one of these in middle school. It’s like when you’re in early elementary school, experimenting with how to dress yourself, and your mom wants you to comb your hair and wear pants but all you want to do is look like spiderman. Maybe these sweatshirts are just a manifestation of those early desires, but tweaked to accommodate the ever increasing age of the American manchild. I just don’t feel like you’d see anyone wear something like this past the age of 12 outside of the U.S. aside from possibly some Eastern European tweaker rave kids.
The final item I was thinking about for this topic is an Ipod speaker setup they sell at IronicOutfitters™.
These speakers are meant to look like one of those super analog, humongous boomboxes from the 80s that were really popular with early hiphoppers and cardboard box break dancers. These were popular because they were the smallest portable music players with decent sound quality.
Today, we have 160 gig Ipods that don’t run off 12 D batteries, headphones and portable speakers that produce sounds that would be considered heavenly by comparison and and a sluagh of embedded equalizers that can reproduce any sound quality imaginable.
Instead, some genius, whose thought process can only have been “OMG lets make a fake piece of technology from 20 years ago but charge mad $$$skrilla$$$ for it and leave it devoid of any useful functionality, LOL” went and created this monstrosity.
Awesome? No. Thankfully I have yet to see anyone carrying one of these down the street. I’m sure it will happen though. That shall be a grim day.
I’d like to end on a positive note though.
I am a huge fan of Sigur Ros, the well known post rock band from Iceland. Besides awe inspiring, celluloidic romance inducing, melodic music, they have some of, in my opinion, the best music videos ever. Editorializing aside though, they hire some astounding cinematographers and directors of photography. My favorite of their music videos is the one for the song Glósóli.
Something about this video gets me everytime. It may be the that quality of it being almost the real world, but something is just a little off, like in Michel Gondry and Wes Anderson films, or the photography of David LaChapelle. It might be the sense of adventure and exploration I pined for as a kid and got to experience growing up, aided by an active imagination. It might just be the astonishing backdrop of Icelandic wilderness. I’m pretty sure I love this video because its a bit of all of those things. It also has that ethereal feeling of celestiality which is coupled with intensive community and belonging. Heading towards the unknown on a team driven quest, presented in such a romanticized vision just really touches the depths of me. I’m not a religious person, but I doubt there is anyone alive who doesn’t wish for something a little bit more here, hoping not everything is what it seems, and that something really does exist beyond the trivial goings on of our egomaniacal lives.