June 21, 2008

"How these trousers don't fall. I have waited. Oh, my God, I'm gonna get one right now. His pants are gonna fall off."

"And it hasn't happened. It's just terrible. I've waited and waited."

The NYT fashion columnist Bill Cunningham mostly sounds like your granddad railing about these kids today.

23 comments:

George said...

Skulls aside, these are like turn-of-the-century hobble skirts. There's something pathetically passive about a young man who's crippled himself with, like, a denim thigh girdle that prevents him from running or walking with a full stride.

Maxi length hems are back, too, also in Manhattan. Not surprising with talk of the possibility of all three US automakers becoming insolvent, the Royal Bank of Scotland warning of a "full fledged crash."

"A report by the bank's research team warns that the S&P 500 index of Wall Street equities is likely to fall by more than 300 points to around 1050 by September as "all the chickens come home to roost" from the excesses of the global boom, with contagion spreading across Europe and emerging markets"

Chickens coming' home...

Ann Althouse said...

Interesting about maxi dresses, but 3 of the 4 pictures at the link show women at red carpet things where women often wear full-length gowns. Only the 4th picture shows what could be a trend, and that dress is much shorter. You can't drag a floor-length dress around along the sidewalk. It would be filthy.

But a lower calf length dress really is great for summer. It's cool and easy to walk around in and sit down casually in -- unlike a minidress which requires you to worry about breezes, stairways, and sitting in the right position. Since I usually sit cross-legged, I'm not going to be happy in even a just below the knee length skirt.

chuck b. said...

Did the low pants phenomenon start on one of the coasts, or was it convergent?

In California, it seems to me the pants have finally gone back up after several years. I haven't noticed any shiny belts or skulls (yet) either. But now I'll be checking out the ethnic dudes and white poseurs to make sure. Great.

The stock market association is obviously absurd.

ricpic said...

I walked into a supermarket today behind one of these jokers with his behind hanging out. Don't tell me it's anything more than a fuck you world gesture!

Ann Althouse said...

The stock market thing is based on an observation made long ago that women's skirts go down when the stock market is down. Hence, short skirts in the 20s and 60s, etc. Cunningham is just trying to be funny... I think!

George said...

The Hemline Indicator was developed by Ralph A. Rotnem, Senior Vice President at Smith Barney. He observed this correlation during the late 1960s when stocks were as sky high as hems were thigh high.

See serious economic documentary here.

Chip Ahoy said...

Chuck b, in the video Bill Cunningham says the low-hanging pants trend began in prisons where the belt was confiscated. That made sense to me. He continues, "Fashion starts from anywhere." Throughout the whole thing I kept imagining the logical conclusion of pants being worn around the ankles laden with heavy chain so movement is completely hobbled, and wondered why none of this has yet to appear on thesartorialist.com ... Not!

knoxwhirled said...

Guys have been wearing there pants like this since I was in high school in the late 80s. Back then it was mostly the "skate rats" the it spread like a contagion... oops I'm doing the granddad thing.

bearbee said...

There's something pathetically passive about a young man who's crippled himself...

I think you've pretty much hit it. For some reason I was thinking about that pants style the other day and how it reflects a defeatist attitude. A slumped over walk with pants that drag. Everything is droopy, down and depressed. Dark, dreary and defensive.

Anymore 'd's?

dmfoiemjsof said...

what a horrible accent on that guy

George said...

Men are going tieless. Women are tossing their pantyhose and going commando.

I long for the good ol' days when we had a Secretary of State who had a tattoo of a tiger on his ass.

Ralph said...

The big white T shirt is also prison attire.

Who was the lawyer who'd put a pin in his cigar, so the jury would be distracted, waiting for his ash to fall?

Donna B. said...

I had the pleasure of witnessing a guy's pants actually falling to his ankles.

He was putting luggage into the back seat of a car at the airport and just as we drove by the pants fell.

My husband nearly ran into the curb he was laughing so hard.

Meade said...

Pants down and hobbled. Prison culture.

If this fashion trend ends up leading to a greater awareness of male on male rape, which represents at least 10% of all rape, it may oddly enough bring about positive consequences.

dick said...

donna b,

Saw that alongside the main highway between Newark, NJ and Jersey City a few years ago. The guy had a flat tire and pulled off to change the tire. He bent over to take the tire off and his pants fell down right in the middle of rush hour with the 6 land road stalled. Everybody was laughing hysterically and he was looking everywhere but at the traffic while he finished changing the tire.

ColoradoComment said...

A bit ago (1-2 yrs, maybe?), the front-center column of the WSJ had an article on how the pants-falling fashion has helped law enforcement achieve successful footraces with culprits. It had some pretty funny stories to tell. Sorry, I don't have an online subscription, or I'd link.

Theo Boehm said...

dmfoiemjsof said...
what a horrible accent on that guy


Whaddaya meeyan? He sounds nahmal foah ah lattah people aroun' heah.

Hector Owen said...

Ralph: The wire in the cigar story is told of Clarence Darrow, and also of Earl Rogers, who might have been inspired by Darrow, if indeed there is anything to that story. I wish I still had my old copy of Darrow's Attorney for the Damned; he might have mentioned that trick in there. According to Cigar Aficionado, Judge Loren Smith tried it as a party trick, and it worked well enough.

I would not suggest that anyone gaze fixedly (as at the gaffed cigar) at the wearers of droopy pants; the kind of young men who wear this fashion are likely to take it the wrong way.

Ralph said...

Hector, thanks. Darrow was my first guess, but I thought it might have been something from Twain or Wodehouse or Faulkner.

Steve said...

He's not "railing about these kids today," Ann. He's actually respectful and fascinated. You're the one who seems to be railing and misunderstanding his point. You might learn something from his attitude. Instead of always trying to seem superior (as you are clearly not), you might want adopt his attitude or wonder respectful fascination. It would make you seem less fuddy-duddy.

Ann Althouse said...

Steve, I know he isn't! I just think it's funny that the text is the same thing a railing granddad could say, but he's a fashion columnist who's actually impressed by those guys. That's the reason for posting... get it?

Ann Althouse said...

If I adopted his "his attitude or wonder respectful fascination" -- or your writing style -- I would be a fool.

Steve said...

Good argument. An ad hominem attack and a swipe at obvious typos. Do you teach that style of argument in your classes?

For the record, that line should have read "his attitude of wonder and respectful fascination."