Cargo shorts are another sin I’m guilty of.

As if it weren’t enough that I don’t take a proper cold shower, apparently I also routinely engage in a major fashion faux pas by wearing cargo shorts. If the Wall Street Journal — always on the bleeding edge of fashion trends — is to be believed, I could very well be destroying my marriage by wearing my bright blue cargo shorts:

Nice Cargo Shorts! You’re Sleeping on the Sofa – WSJ.

Relationships around the country are being tested by cargo shorts, loosely cut shorts with large pockets sewn onto the sides. Men who love them say they’re comfortable and practical for summer. Detractors say they’ve been out of style for years, deriding them as bulky, uncool and just flat-out ugly.

I don’t give a flying fuck what the fashion industry and its aficionados think is cool when it comes to clothing. I’ve long given up on trying to be stylish and my rule is “if it feels good, wear it.” Hence I tend to wear t-shirts with a pocket on the chest and Hawaiian shirts at all times of the year and mostly jeans for pants.

cargoshortshj

When it comes to shorts I don’t have a lot of them because I generally don’t spend a lot of time outside in the summer and I can’t wear them to work (it’s bad enough I wear jeans everyday). As a result I only own one pair of bright blue cargo shorts that have some insignia on them that looks like they were aimed at surfing fans or something. If I’m going out in public in shorts then these are the pair I’ll probably be wearing. They’re comfortable and they have lots of pockets to carry things like my phone, glasses, and whatever the fuck else I need to carry. According to some folks, I should be tarred and feathered for being a middle aged man who dares to wear such an atrocity:

Around 2010, slimmer men’s shorts started to replace baggy silhouettes. By then, the backlash against cargo shorts was well under way.

Fashion guru Tim Gunn said in a 2007 interview with Reuters that cargo shorts were the least fashionable item of clothing in his closet. British tabloid Daily Express called cargo shorts “a humiliation for any man over 21 and should be sold only after proof of age has been presented.”

Leading the charge against the humble cargo shorts are the wives:

Jen Anderson, a 45-year-old freelance writer in Brooklyn, N.Y., said she used to tease her husband gently about his fashion choices, until he made a purchase that crossed the line: denim cargo shorts. That was “just too far,” she said.

Through what Ms. Anderson described as “strong mocking,” she convinced him to return the shorts. She said she doesn’t like the idea of being seen in public with her husband when he’s wearing cargo shorts, which make him look like “a misshapen lump.”

“It’s a reflection on me, like ‘How did she let him out the door like that?’ ” she said.

I’m fortunate that my wife is more concerned with my happiness than my fashion sense. Honestly, I think she’s happy if what I’m wearing only has one hole in it someplace (some of those Hawaiian shirts are getting pretty tattered). The WSJ article I linked to above talks about a number of wives who are throwing away or donating their husband’s cargo shorts when they’re not around which seems like a pretty duplicitous thing for a wife to do.

Besides, fashion tends to be cyclical. It won’t be too long before cargo shorts are all the rage again. The damned things have been around since the 1940s. Bell bottom pants made a brief comeback in 2014 that made absolutely no sense to me having had to live through them in the 1970s. If there’s one silver lining to the current backlash against cargo shorts it’s that it appears to make them relatively cheap so I think I may have to add a couple more pairs to my wardrobe.

Are people really that worried about the length of their eyelashes?

The other day I’m sittin’ on the couch watching something I can’t recall at the moment, probably How It’s Made on the Discovery Channel, when an advertisement for something called Latisse comes on during a break. The ad features Brook Shields in what starts off looking like your typical push for a mascara product, but she ain’t shillin’ for mascara this time. No, Latisse is a drug that’s supposed to give you longer and fuller eye lashes. They bill it as the first FDA approved drug to treat, and I quote, “inadequate or not enough eyelashes.” According to their website the technical term for this condition is hyptrichosis, but according to the folks at the American Hair Loss Association I just linked to, that term is used by dermatologists to describe a condition of no hair growth. Which I suppose would be pretty inadequate eyelashes.

So I’m watching this ad unfold as they explain that you apply it to the base of your lashes on the upper eyelid and in a few weeks you’ll have eyelashes you could beat a horse to death with. Then they get into the traditional Listing Of The Side Effects phase of the ad. As they list off the numerous things that could go wrong my jaw slowly hit the floor. Here’s the official list directly from their website:

If you are using prescription products for lowering eye pressure or have a history of eye pressure problems, only use LATISSE® under close doctor supervision. May cause eyelid skin darkening which may be reversible, and there is potential for increased brown iris pigmentation which is likely to be permanent. There is a potential for hair growth to occur in areas where LATISSE® solution comes in repeated contact with skin surfaces. If you develop or experience any eye problems or have eye surgery, consult your doctor immediately about continued use of LATISSE®. The most common side effects after using LATISSE® solution are an itching sensation in the eyes and/or eye redness.

Got that? If you have a history of eye pressure problems then this drug could make them worse. It could darken up your eyelids so you look like you’ve got a couple of shiners from someone, but that may be, not necessarily is mind you, but may be reversible. It could also turn your eyes brown if they aren’t already and that’s not reversible. You could grow hair where you don’t want it to if you are sloppy in applying this product! Best of all it’s likely to make your eyes red and itchy like your allergies are acting up. But at least you won’t have inadequate lashes!

As it turns out, Latisse is actually just another drug, called Lumigan which is used to treat glaucoma, with a new name. One of the side effects of Lumigan is increased hair growth so it didn’t take much thinkin’ for someone to figure out that they could sell it to people who suffer from eyelash insecurity and make some extra bucks. If you go to their website they spend a lot of time downplaying the risks of the product, which should come as no big surprise.

The folks at the FDA, however, they ain’t too happy about that:

We’ve blogged about the new eyelash enhancement drug Latisse several times before. And we’ve talked about how the drug has some side effects that are rather serious for a cosmetic product, and that Allergan’s promotional materials tend to downplay such risks. Now the Food and Drug Administration has sent a warning letter to Allergan, saying that many claims on its website are misleading and, in fact, unlawful.

You can read the whole letter for yourself, but here some highlights.

Latisse’s Website says:
In the “Is Latisse safe?” section of the drug’s website: “The FDA reviewed clinical study results to verify the identity, potency, purity and stability of the ingredients, and demonstrated that the product is safe and effective for its intended use if used as prescribed.”

The FDA says:
This description is misleading and it fails to mention that Latisse may have side effects, or mention any of those side effects. It also implies, according to the FDA, that Latisse is “especially safe because the FDA has verified the identity, potency, purity, and stability of the ingredients.”

Latisse’s website says:
The site repeatedly mentions that the eye redness and itching that can accompany the use of Latisse are “not allergic reactions.”

The FDA says:
That’s misleading. In fact, allergic conjunctivitis is an adverse reaction reported with the use of the active ingredient, bimatoprost ophthalmic solution. Further, these symptoms are usually resolved only after discontinuing treatment with the drug. The FDA was particularly concerned about these claims, according to the letter, “because patients are highly unlikely to be able to differentiate between eye redness associated with conjunctival hyperemia, allergic reaction, or inflammation without the advice of a healthcare provider.”

The FDA lists off several misleading claims and has told the folks at Allergan they’d best be making some changes or they’ll be facing some fines.

If you watch the video you’ll be even more stunned to hear that it costs about $120 a month to use this drug and if you stop using it your lashes go back to their old wussy assed ways. So once you start I hope you can afford to keep using it while avoiding all those side effects. Now I’m no fashion diva, but that sounds like a lot to go through because you think some guy isn’t going out with you because your eyelashes are too thin and wispy.

And I’ll let you in on a little secret: In all my 42 years of being a guy I have never once heard a man say to me: “Ya know, she’s got a great personality and a body that would make the Pope give up celibacy, but I just can’t get past her inadequate eyelashes!”

The Peekaru will make you look like an extra from “Aliens.”

You see this picture to the left? You’re going to think it’s an April Fool’s joke, but it’s not. That’s a real product you can buy that’ll make it look like your baby is bursting through your chest like those monsters from the Aliens movies. It’s called a Peekaru Original Fleece Baby Carrier Cover:

Let a Peekaru Original simplify the process of getting out of the door. Wear your Peekaru over any baby carrier and you’re ready for cooler weather. Add a coat and you’re ready for winter. Whether it’s a crisp fall evening walk, a winter carnival, or a springtime parade, the Peekaru will keep your baby toasty warm without the clutter.

Baby Wearing Made Warm
The Peekaru Original is a fleece vest that zips over a soft baby carrier to keep you and your child warm. It fits comfortably over all carriers, including Baby Bjorns, Hotslings, Ergos, Mei Tais, and Wraps.

Made from 85% recycled fleece, each Peekaru Original saves approximately 25 plastic bottles from reaching the landfill. Feel good knowing that while you are holding your baby close, you are also helping the environment.

So apparently it doesn’t actually come with the baby carrier itself, it just makes you look like your baby is trying to claw its way out of your chest cavity. In all fairness I should probably point out that the other pictures on their website aren’t quite so… cinematic. Most of them make the baby look more like some kind of weird tumor growing on your chest or back. Which reminds me of a scene from Hellboy II:

This monstrosity making apparel will set you back about $80. Which is probably worth it as it’s sure to make people get the hell out of your way at the local mall.

Found over at Crunchgear.

 

People are being catty about Michelle Obama’s dress choices.

From the haven’t-we-got-better-things-to-worry-about department comes word that First Lady Michelle Obama is causing an uproar because she’s wearing sleeveless dresses:

“One reader summed it up better than most of them. She talked about how the season is winter, the occasion was business and a sleeveless dress was the wrong style at the wrong time,” said Chicago Tribune style reporter Wendy Donahue.

She said the paper’s Web site has received hundreds of online responses about Obama’s outfit.

“Most of the complaints centered on the dress conveying a sense of informality on a serious occasion,” Donahue said. “She’s kind of faced some criticism for that in the past where people have said maybe [her clothing is] distracting from the central point, from what is going on.”

Even some Washington insiders were surprised by Obama’s wear because of the frigid February weather.

“When she was at the non-State of the Union address and had the sleeveless dress on, that was a bit of a surprise and I got some e-mails from some folks who were, you know, they work on the Hill and they were like, ‘Wow she’s sleeveless,’” Henderson said. “‘Nobody else is sleeveless here and it is the winter.’”

Seriously, is this really something people should be bitching about? If she were showing up in jogging pants and a tank top with old ratty sneakers I could possibly see giving a shit, but this is ridiculous. I’m willing to bet she wears a lot of sleeveless outfits because she doesn’t like the feel of sleeves on her arms. It’s the same reason I tend to wear almost exclusively short-sleeved shirts. I hate the feel of sleeves on my forearms even in the dead of winter. It has to be pretty friggin’ cold for me to wear a long sleeve shirt. Or a seriously special occasion, and even then I’d rather wear a short sleeved shirt and not take off my jacket.

Inadvertently hip and cool.

I work with a lot of younger people at my job. Most of them are in their early twenties because it’s the sort of job that pays fairly well while you’re going to college and it’s right there in a multiple college town. We have our fair share of hip-hop fans who wear their pants so low that if they didn’t have boxers on then their entire ass would be hanging out. It’s a fashion trend I don’t completely understand, but as it turns out I’m guilty of it myself. Though in my case it’s less to do with a youthful rebellious streak than it is with the fact that I have no ass to speak of and a waist that’s too big.

If I don’t keep tugging at my belt I end up with the back of my jeans hanging down in a sad parody of the hipper, cooler kids. I also tend to wear boxers with those jeans so I fit right in so long as you overlook the fact that I am not a hip, cool, early 20-something youth and am in fact a middle-aged, fat, nearly bald, white guy. My one saving grace is a tendency to wear really large shirts that I don’t tuck in so they cover my sagging trousers and keep my boxers from being bared to all who pass by. Still it’s an interesting thing we have in common. Even if it is unintentional and no where near as cool on my part.

It’s a sad day in SEBLand: Inventor of the Hawaiian shirt has died.

I declare today a National Day of Mourning as the inventor of one of my favorite shirt styles, Alfred Shaheen, has died at the age of 86:

As tourists from the US to Hawaii after World War II, many began to bring home colorful but cheesy looking shirts and sundresses that would be cause for much amusement among friends.

Shaheen began to change that in 1948 when he opened Shaheen’s of Honolulu and began designing, printing and producing “aloha” shirts, dresses and other ready-to-wear clothing of better quality.

Among those seen in Shaheen-designed shirts of that era was Elvis Presley, who wore one for the cover of his 1961 soundtrack album “Blue Hawaii.”

Such Shaheen originals now sell for more than £500

“Before Shaheen came along, there was no Hawaii garment industry. There were mom and pop stores but no real modern industry,” Linda Arthur, a professor of textiles and clothing at Washington State University said.

I loves me some Hawaiian shirts. Those and t-shirts comprise the majority of my wardrobe. OK so I’ll admit that until I saw this news story I didn’t even know someone had invented Hawaiian shirts, but it’s still a bummer to hear he’s passed on.

Meanwhile the Obamas discuss their status as Fashion Icons.

In light of the entry I posted yesterday in which I bitched about how Sarah “I’m Just Like You” Palin puts the lie to her nickname by having the RNC spend $150,000 on her wardrobe, the following video clip from Access Hollywood about the Obama’s status as fashion icons stands in stark contrast:

Michelle Obama does a lot of her shopping at the GAP. The dress she’s wearing in the interview cost a mere $30. Barack resoles his shoes and is wearing pants he’s had for 10 years. Who do you think is going to be more fiscally responsible?

Found over at The Huffington Post.