Sunday, December 04, 2005


One of my Friday notes says, Trousers!

Here is the story behind this note.

In one of my classes there is a guy who is perfectly normal except for the way he dresses. He is one of my best students, and always gets good grades despite being quite shy. Even though he blushes when anybody speaks to him, he always does speak - in English - and does well on every test. He obviously studies at home, which is quite unusual for my students. I have grown used to his odd dressing style.

On Friday, however, I was rude to him. I did a double-take, and stared. I shouldn't have done that, but I COULDN'T HELP IT.

Before I tell you what he was wearing on Friday, let me tell you how he usually looks.

In the first semester, this kid had bright orange hair. Most of the students dye their hair these days, so that wasn't unusual. The colour was kind of unusual, though, especially in such a shy kid. It was a very bright orange. A glaring orange. If I had to come up with a name for it I'd call it nuclear carrot orange. It was longish, and straight, and came down over his eyes except when he pinned it back with hairclips.

I have a few guys in my classes using hairclips to keep the hair out of their eyes. (I think it looks strange on a boy, but I'm willing to accept that I could be old and boring.) This kid, however, didn't just use one hairclip, or even two. He'd use dozens, and all different colours. Sometimes he'd plait his nuclear carrot hair first, and then pin the plaits back. Actually, the first time I saw him I thought he was a girl. He also has a bigger collection of earrings than me.

All this colour on his head did not match his clothes. He always wears black. I don't think I have ever seen him in anything but black. His clothes are unusual, and sometimes startling. There are a lot of chains and pockets and ribbons and things attached to them, a sort of gothic look, but aside from that, basically, it's all black except accessories, which are sometimes coloured. This used to contrast nicely with his nuclear carrot hair, and also went with his fingernails. Oh, I forgot to mention his fingernails. He painted them black, too. And wears a lot of rings.

This semester he has changed his style a little. Not much, but his hair is no longer nuclear carrot. It is black. Although this is his natural colour he somehow manages to make it look artificial, but that might just be because I had got so used to the orange. He still uses hairclips sometimes, but not as often as before. His fingernails have gone multi-coloured, though, perhaps to compensate for the lack of colour in his hair. He now paints them differently each week. This week it was alternate black and blue and silver, and he was wearing black fingerless gloves.

But it was his trousers that made me do the double-take on Friday. I didn't notice them at first because he was sitting down. All I could see was that he was wearing a very warm black jacket, and an electric blue scarf around his neck that matched the blue fingernails. However, at some point he had to get up and walk to the other side of the classroom, going behind my podium, and when I saw his trousers I did a huge double-take and almost fell off my chair. I'm fairly sure he was looking back at someone when I did this, but I'm also pretty sure that he caught me staring immediately after that. He certainly blushed. I felt bad for staring, but WHAT DID HE EXPECT?

His trousers were... they were... I don't know how to begin describing them. How can I build a picture in your head that will startle you as much as it did me?

Imagine a pair of very short black shorts. Now imagine that you have some trouser LEGS, that go all the way down to the ankle. Just the legs. Now attach the trouser legs to the shorts using vertical straps, one each side. Leave a gap of about ten centimetres, showing a good portion of hairless, scrawny, mottled-blue-from-cold thigh.

Add great big scary boots, to complete the effect.

The trouser legs had some other bits and pieces, too - chains or buckles or pockets or something, but I'm afraid I didn't notice exactly what they were. They were BUSY trousers, but I was too stunned by the thighs to notice how they were busy.

Wouldn't you have stared?

I think what makes this kid's style so confusing and odd is that he is not in the least bit of an attention seeker. If he wore normal clothes you would think he was a normal, slightly shy boy. He is polite and quiet, studies hard, and blushes easily, especially when he talks to girls. His manner says, Don't pay any attention to me, it's embarrassing. But his clothes scream, LOOK AT ME! The disconnect between his personality and his looks is just too much. He is so MEEK.

I thought I was used to his odd clothing style. He often makes me want to stare, but I'd become good at being blase about how he looked. I don't stare, usually.




kenju said...

He must be seeking attention if he wears something like those pants, dyes his hair and paints his nails.

Kay said...

Note to self.....
Find the blogger awards place and nominate Badaunt for best it now.....

Ms Mac said...

Kids today! They think they invented fashion!


The MAN Fan Club said...

Everyone here in America would be staring at him.

Hooch said...

Perhaps he feels if everyone notices the character he dresses as, they won't really notice him.

Next time I'd recommend he wear some brightly coloured tights under the pants, so his poor little legs aren't quite so cold.

Wiccachicky said...

You're okay staring at that! That's crazy. It's interesting though how sometimes your shy students will dress the most boldly. This semester I had a very meek young woman in my class who could barely muster enough volume to address the class and ask a question, let alone give an individual presentation! But she came in to class in the loudest, craziest goth like outfits I've ever seen.