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Thursday, September 23, 2004

Confessions of guilty pleasures

At this introspective time of year, I find myself wanting to confess some of my less admirable behavior… even for some of my so-called ‘victimless crimes’. A blogger I greatly admire used my name, along with the word ‘nice’ in the same sentence (and actually intended to relate the two), and I now feel honor-bound to reveal my true colors, so to speak.

In the privacy of my own thoughts, I have often taken a guilty pleasure in silently snickering (or as the Brits would say; sniggering) at the many fashion victims I encounter in my daily life.

In particular, I’ve noticed that Israelis either have breathtakingly beautiful taste in clothing… or are such shocking fashion victims that one is tempted to throw a tarp over them and say, “you poor thing!” That neither of these groups seem particularly self-conscious about their attire is sort of beside the point. If I were such a nice person, I probably wouldn’t take such guilty pleasure in noticing the chasm between them.

My wife is probably reading this and holding her sides from painful laughter. After all, in our dating days she used to shake her head at my shockingly poor fashion sense… once refusing to be seen with me on the Miami Beach boardwalk because I committed the fashion crime of wearing Bermuda-length khaki shorts, A blue oxford shirt, with a striped ‘rep’ tie. It is probably worth pointing out that I was not a schoolboy enrolled at Eton at the time.

Yes girls, when Zahava met me, she must have clapped her hands together and silently squealed, “project!”, because the alternative is too sad to contemplate… a lonely bachelor existence dressed in nothing but khakis and blue oxfords.

Of course, I still favor relatively conservative attire, but Zahava has introduced many other colors into my wardrobe… and many patterns (besides stripes) into my tie rack. And most important… she has opened my eyes to the fashion crimes being committed every day by otherwise good people. My crime in all this, and my confession to you all is that I can’t unlearn what I’ve been taught… and I’m powerless to look away.

Some of the blame for my behavior must also fall to a talented writer I follow who tipped me off to what seems to be the Olympics of fashion crimes; a web site called ‘Go Fug Yourself’. The thinly veiled profanity in the title aside, this site is surprisingly reserved and has a sidesplitting combination of fashion victim mug shots and scathing commentary from the host(s).

And, though I’m not proud of the fact that I (privately) sometimes make fun of the way other people dress… I would feel much less good about myself if I allowed someone I admire to continue thinking I am so ‘nice’.

There! Now that I’ve gotten that off my chest, I can contemplate the new year with a clean(er) conscience.

Posted by David Bogner on September 23, 2004 | Permalink

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Thank goodness that I never got to witness the bermuda shorts (yikes - just thinking of those white gams of yours being exposed, makes me shudder!) with the oxford shirt and tie outfit... (i wonder what shoes one wears with such an outfit!)

Fortunately, you're cute, so your clothes don't much matter!

Posted by: val | Sep 23, 2004 5:42:23 PM

David, for shame! Placing blame on someone else when it should rest squarely on your shoulders. Harumph!

Okay, I'll accept some of the blame. Because, well, I guess some of it is mine. And you called me talented. Flattery may not get you everywhere, but it will get you past the velvet rope and into the VIP Room. (Not that I really know what that means - I just like the way it looks. Style over substance, ya know. ;) )

That said, it is perfectly possible to be nice without having a constant stream of nice thoughts. You're only human, David. You just happen to be a nice human. Might as well accept it.

Posted by: Carol | Sep 23, 2004 7:58:56 PM

Don't let Dave fool you, kids. The man has a way with the LLBean catalogue.

Jordan

Posted by: Jordan | Sep 23, 2004 9:36:53 PM

David,

You are *too* nice. Get in touch with your inner asshole, man! We all know that if you make fun of someone's fashion sense that you're not making a judgement of that person's character.

In L.A. we are ruthless on these matters. We have simply no ruth.

Posted by: Jim | Sep 24, 2004 12:28:39 AM

Tie? Tie rack? What foreign language are you speaking, David?

Posted by: Jennifer | Sep 24, 2004 9:29:31 AM

Val... I wore a lot of things that I'm not proud of, but don't get all uppity or I'll drag out some pictures of you from the '70s! Play nice. :-)

Carol... Thanks for that. I am human... at times a poorly dressed human... but it still makes me feel bad to point at others and giggle.

Jordan... I don't see the problem here. LL Bean could make a big difference here in Israel! No?

Jim... My Inner A** hole is just fine thanks. Just ask my wife and some of the people who have to deal with me on a daily basis.

Jennifer... I kept a few ties for when I have to meet with people from civilized countries. :-)

Posted by: David | Sep 24, 2004 1:09:33 PM

In response to Val's query as to what shoes one wears with shorts, oxford, and tie, well, the answer is so apparently I'm surprised no one else chimed in:

black knee-high dress socks and sandals of course.

Posted by: beth | Sep 24, 2004 7:31:45 PM

um, Beth... If memory serves, I think it was LL Bean cordovan penny loafers with no socks. [hangs head] I'm so ashamed.

Posted by: David | Sep 25, 2004 10:47:13 PM

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