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When I'm not writing about my experiences in this journey called 'life', I'm singing and uploading my own interpretations of modern music. Click on "Cover Songs" to hear them, or on the YouTube logo on the right to see my YouTube channel.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Speaking Someone Else's Mind

I'm all in favour of freedom of expression.

Hence the blog. Duh.

In today's day and age, we have grown accustomed to the whole we-have-the-right-to-say-whatever-we-want rantings of the general public. Hence we have protest marches, peace marches, gay rights marches and any other kind of march that you care to name. But for those who are a little anti-social, agoraphobic or just too lazy to march anywhere save to the kitchen for some beer, there are less tiresome ways of expressing yourself.

Let's start off with the "t-shirt message" - you know what I mean, those t-shirts that have something witty, funny or 'cool' written across them. Don't get me wrong, I don't have anything against them; in fact, I love those kind of shirts and look for them whenever I can. My current favourite is my And1 t-shirt that has a picture of a guy dunking a basketball on the back and a message saying "You can't hold me; that's your girls job!". How true.

Which brings me to my point. I am an avid fan of basketball, and I've been playing it since I was 12. It is one of the few things in my life which I am extremely passionate about, to the level of obsession! So I feel I am somewhat justified in wearing a t-shirt that expresses my mad skills on the court (yes, MAD skills! Ladies, again, please, one at a time!). But when I walk down the street and see some seedy looking guy with a beer belly and the athletic ability of an arthritic camel, wearing a ridiculously expensive basketball t-shirt with some good ol' fashioned trash talk on it, my blood starts to boil. Maybe I'm being judgemental, you say, and a tad unfair; maybe he's a fan of the game too. You must remember that I live in Sri Lanka; basketball is about as popular a sport as ice hockey. So it's safe to assume that Mr.Wanna B. Baller is just a dumbass in badass clothing.

However, it isn't just trash talk and witty clever messages that capture the attention of these frauds; there are also the pointless and somewhat bizarre slogans too. Just last week I saw not one, not two, but three girls wearing the exact same top with the exact same nonsense written across it: "Dancer girl fun and cool". What does that even mean?!

Of course, there are other subtle ways that people choose to express themselves. Most of the time people opt for the implied message expressed by their choice of attire, rather than the literal one as mentioned above. In this case too we have the same posers, and they are just as easy to spot. For example, the backward baseball hat, bling bling, baggy pants, XXL football jersey and sneakers is the standard dress code among most of the hip hop loving youth of the country. Again, I have no issues with that - except, perhaps, when the baseball hat says "Titanic", the 'bling-bling' is the sort used to tie up stray animals, the XXL football jersey is his dad's t-shirt, the sneakers are rubber slippers and the baggy pants smell like something that even God would have thought was crossing the line when He was raining down plagues on the Egyptians. Then there are the 'rock stars' - equally easy to spot. They all have the black t-shirt with "Slayer" or some other pointless thrash band on it, some form of narcotic in their hand, a body-mass index equivalent to a toddler and the most disgusting eruption of frizzed out hair on their head. Whenever I see the hair especially, I feel like quoting a line from "Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels" and saying "You could fall in love with an orangutan in there".

Last but not least, we have tattoos. At the risk of sounding annoyingly repetitive, again I must state that I have nothing against tattoos either. I've often been tempted to get one myself, but the fear of being disowned by the family has been a more than adequate deterrent. But surely there is a line one should draw before getting inked. Dragons and weird tribal lines are all cool if you're some kind of grandmaster ninja warlord assassin (I had no idea which order to type that out in!) but showing up to work with a forked tongue sticking out from under your sleeve is just a tad shortsighted. The ladies are no better; unfortunately only a very few women can pull off a tattoo and look sexy. I know a girl with a tattoo of a flower on the top of her foot, and it sort of freaks me out; the colours (yellow and green) when set against her skin make it look like she has some kind of rash.

Like I said in the beginning of this post - I have nothing against freedom of expression. But shouldn't we be expressing our own values and messages instead of stealing an idea out of 50cent's wardrobe? Do we need to pretend we're street ball players when we go shopping, even if we're as tall as we are wide? What's wrong in settling for a nice big "Fosters" t-shirt - an honest and appropriate choice, in my opinion. Besides, the colour blue is, err, 'slimming'. Ladies, don't settle for the 'tramp stamp' without actually thinking about it first.

And for the love of god, all you "Dancer Girls", the next time you plan on buying something at the pavement bazaar's, well, just don't!


Scrumpulicious said...

Lol! Nice post. So true about the oversized dad's t-shirts!

And "mad skills" huh? I guess you'll have to show me at some point! :)

alicia said...

haha, nice one.
my favourite tee line is
"Who are you and why are you reading my t-shirt?"

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