Backwoods Style

The March Esquire came in the mail today, the ‘Style 2006’ issue, which means that I immediately tossed out about 45% of the 238 pages. I like to tear up magazines while I read them (unless, of course, I’m in the library), file some of the stuff I might reference later, and pitch the rest.

Rip — there go all those fancy ads that Giorgio Armani and Dolce & Gabbana and Perry Ellis and Gucci spent thousands of dollars to produce. With Esquire I also start by throwing out any articles having to do with fashion. Sure it’s interesting to see that a restauranteur in New York City (whose place looks like a jail cell) will pay $3,075 for a nice suit, and $1,975 for a sweater; that elsewhere you can get a cotton t-shirt for $200 or a watch for $2,895; and that a high school quarterback in Missouri dresses himself (minus socks and underwear) for $318. But it’s not for me, since a) I have a style quotient in the negative numbers, and b) I get most of my wardrobe from whatever people I know themselves are throwing away.

The best thing in the issue, fashion-wise, is a style map of the U.S. listing each state’s contribution. You probably already know that Hawaii, for example, has given us floral-print shirts (not to mention Don Ho and Adam West). But how about these other wild and crazy trios — Nebraska (Marlon Brando, Crazy Horse, and Fred Astaire), Minnesota (Prince, Bob Dylan, and Paul Bunyan), and Wyoming (Harrison Ford, Jackson Pollack, and JCPenney).

According to Esquire, this part of the country has almost as little style as I do. Both Maine and Vermont each has produced only one fashionable thing worth mentioning: L. L. Bean in the former, and Burton snowboards in the latter. The magazine claims the most stylist state we’ve got is (of all places) Kentucky.

It must be per capita, because California, New York, and Texas all have more style points listed. Kentucky has nine, including Muhammad Ali, George Clooney, Johnny Depp, Col. Sanders, and Hunter S. Thompson. Who would make up an interesting basketball team… or an interesting just about anything, really.

* * *

p.s. I’m somewhat astonished that the magazine includes an ad for the Donald (J.) Trump signature line of luxury suits, available at Macy’s. Not that luxurious, I guess, since a sportcoat only goes for $350, but could anyone really aspire to look like that clown?

Also amused to find, in an eyeglasses ad, some film producer/publisher I’ve never heard of decribed as a “non-stop creative talent.” (???) Which a) must be exhausting, and b) means it’s time for me to stop.

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