Fresh style insights, tips and commentary by Michelle Tea, Michael Braithwaite, Leo Plass, Page McBee and Carrie Leilam Love.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Southern Culture

Currently I am in a (thank God) air conditioned Starbucks in Columbia, South Carolina. I am researching for my book and sharing a hotel with rednecks on a hunting trip that I go to great lengths to avoid. This is a huge college town with one of the highest crime rates in the country and it has mad creepy vibes but it also has a really solid health food store, a sweet record store, several bars that seem cool and an American Apparel. Of course!

So I'm a little busy since soon I have to go the First Baptist Church in Gaston (!) but I would not leave you hanging on a Friday, friends, so I thought I'd send in this dispatch from the dirty, muggy, booty short-loving south.

Speaking of, the style here is making me sad. With a few exceptions--actually, one: a very well put-together bespectacled, bearded city employee who I met on Wednesday evening at an awesome Korean vegetarian restaurant--it basically looks like 1993 among the more "alternative" set (many of whom are very nice). A dreadlocked, unwashed white guy with tattoos who I've never seen before came up to me at the hipster coffee shop this morning and asked if I'd enjoyed my meal on Wednesday evening. He also made a recommendation for another dish I might enjoy. Which was friendly. And a little creepy. But nice.

Anyhow, I thought I'd be inspired at some point but the dirth of queers and the prevalence of bright red boob-hugger shirts with COCKS emblazoned across them is depressing me today.

The cock in question. Get it? This is a college football town. 

Yikes. It's clearly date-rape city on campus, which is brimming with flipped polo collars, frats and ruddy-faced dudes en masse. To cleanse my palette, I visited my favorite fashion blog (besides Ironing Board, of course!), High Snobiety. They recently featured this awesome blazer that I can't imagine wearing because I'm sweating balls right now but soon I'll be engulfed in Bay Area fog and when that happens I'll want THIS from Asos:

There! That's better. Also check out Mos Def in New York looking fucking awesome:



Also, look! It's Steve McQueen, one of the coolest dudes who's ever lived:

Now that we've got that squared away, I will continue to keep my eye out for a well dressed southern gentleman. I'll keep you posted.

Addendum: I'd like to officially note that the south is full of actual culture and super fly fashion (Hello, New Orleans) and that this is by no means meant as a judgement. It's tongue in cheek. And I've just discovered that my genealogy qualifies me as the most southern person you know (we settled South Carolina AS A COLONY) so this is all in affectionate fun. COCKS! 

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