On Female Fuccboi Style
February 10, 2016 10:14 AM   Subscribe

 
God dammit! Speak English!!! (GOML)
posted by Sophie1 at 10:21 AM on February 10, 2016 [15 favorites]


That was nearly unintelligible. But it seems to amount to "these kids today with their $THING and their $OTHER_THING".
posted by tel3path at 10:21 AM on February 10, 2016 [17 favorites]


Is this algorithmically generated?
posted by baf at 10:21 AM on February 10, 2016 [13 favorites]


fuccboi?

*sigh* I can't keep up with this daily "making shit up so we have something to post" thing.
posted by Thorzdad at 10:22 AM on February 10, 2016 [7 favorites]


I wish there had been photos of the Byblos jacket; it sounds nice
posted by Greg Nog at 10:23 AM on February 10, 2016 [10 favorites]


I was so hoping the amount of color and patterns dripping into menswear meant we where being primped for a new carnaby street movement but fashion took a hard right and got deeply conservative and boring and safe recently. Very safe, very following look book, very "Bonobos shipped me this"
posted by The Whelk at 10:23 AM on February 10, 2016 [9 favorites]


Plus, I LIKE Balmain for H&M. Resale market or not. And I have good taste. What's the f-ing problem if a lot of other people turn out to have good taste too.

Only wish I'd bought some when it first came out.
posted by tel3path at 10:26 AM on February 10, 2016


Does The Whelk have like a men's fashion blog I can subscribe to
posted by Gymnopedist at 10:30 AM on February 10, 2016 [8 favorites]


the ontological aspects of internet style

The ontological "aspects" of a certain style? So...that it exists in the first place, or...?

The male fuccboi, at least in the sense I mean, is the hypebeast in a post-health-goth world.

I have no idea why she would indicate that she's clarifying something and then use an inscrutable metaphor to do so.

I'm not discussing the imagined sociological implications of the word, where a Tinder guy acts like a Tinder guy.

Imagined by who? Sociological how?

I'm speaking purely in style terms. I'm talking about those heads for whom a $100 knock-off of a $885 Vetements hoodie is a justifiable investment.

Oh...right! Those guys! What are we supposed to know about them, again?

So what's it called when women do this? I mean women who care about "personal style" but only to the point where it's confusing.

I think it's called On Female Fuccboi Style

Seriously, though, I can tell that she's talking about real things but her prose is like an obstacle course
posted by clockzero at 10:32 AM on February 10, 2016 [14 favorites]


I kind of think that this article is misogynist. I mean, I get what this person is saying (although it's never too soon for Eileen Fisher! I thrifted my first Eileen Fisher item when I was 22) but....jeez louise, would it be possible to express the central idea without trashing on random women wearing clothes?

"I think that the internet has made it such that everyone dresses in a way that is supposed to be cutely off-kilter but is, in fact, formulaic" - what's so hard about that? "Certain designers become almost check-box requirements while still being perceived as edgy, like Rick Owens"; "How can we understand the way that the internet interprets the idea of being 'unique'?" Or even, "what is the nature of the pleasure that people get from following these microtrends?" Or "what does it mean when a lot of these itty, supposedly independent labels are and have always been made by just a handful of workshops and factories and owned by a handful of companies? Whither individuality then?"

Again, is that so hard?

Or even "I hate it when people wear sweaters whose fuzzy sleeves cover just a portion of their hands because that's de rigeur".
posted by Frowner at 10:33 AM on February 10, 2016 [26 favorites]


I mean the only piece of clothing she mentions positively is a jacket that only goes with a fictional pair of ludicrous-sounding pants. This article is not good.
posted by Rock Steady at 10:34 AM on February 10, 2016 [4 favorites]


Everything we do ultimately winds up developing roughly the same level of jargon and in-references and private jokes as everything else we do. And thus becoming nearly totally impenetrable to outsiders.

I've seen arguments about vi vs. EMACS that were about as intelligible to the outsider as that article is to someone, like me, who knows nothing about fashion.

But despite knowing nothing at all about the subject matter and being unable to understand any of the jargon, the tone is instantly familiar. We have a person who is deeply upset that a certain group of people is liking something for the wrong reasons, or perhaps liking something the author believes no one should be permitted to like. I've seen the exact same sort of article written about particular video games or genres of video games, programming languages, and printer brands.

I do have just one question though. Is "fuccboi" supposed to be pronounced "fuck boy"?
posted by sotonohito at 10:36 AM on February 10, 2016 [4 favorites]


I would like to see the jacket.

There's interesting stuff about the economics of being a fashion blogger/instagrammer/etc and the ways that this intersects with perceived "individuality" - basically, the whole damn thing is corrupt, as one might expect. And yet, today I am wearing a vintage nineties horizontally ribbed black mockneck sweater, precisely because it is a vintage nineties etc etc, and I am gratified by the experience. It's like the food industry - you can't stop eating, so all your choices are in bad faith in some way, assuming you have the money to choose at all.

(On another note: I've just started wearing men's button-fronts instead of women's button-fronts that look like men's, and wow, the quality is so much better. It's insane. Maybe the most pronounced gender quality difference I've ever encountered.)
posted by Frowner at 10:37 AM on February 10, 2016 [7 favorites]


Oh yay, another excuse to judge other people and police women's appearances!
posted by escape from the potato planet at 10:38 AM on February 10, 2016 [4 favorites]


I need to re-read TFA after I've had more coffee, because I've gone a bit cross-eyed conjuring the mental images therein and I also have a strong undercurrent of 'ruined by internet' within me, and I don't want to go Ulysses S. Grant in this thread just yet.

Until then, note that I would subscribe to The Whelk's style blog.
posted by a halcyon day at 10:39 AM on February 10, 2016


The author has a promising future in postmodern lit crit theory. Or in being a fuccboi.
posted by GuyZero at 10:39 AM on February 10, 2016 [6 favorites]


I don't want to go Ulysses S. Grant in this thread just yet

Now I don't even understand the commentary on TFA. By this I assume you mean you want to burn it all to the ground? Or was that Sherman? I'm not American so I'm a little lost here.
posted by GuyZero at 10:41 AM on February 10, 2016 [3 favorites]


actually, i think i agree with her. i think she's saying you should think more.
posted by andrewcooke at 10:43 AM on February 10, 2016


(Right now my personal goals is "dressing like you're about to be screamed at by Jack Warner " which may not be universally applicable)
posted by The Whelk at 10:43 AM on February 10, 2016 [15 favorites]


What's super interesting, though, is the way that everything gets repurposed. Like, nineties doctor martens were all the go for a while, but now it's either vintage or knock-off ugly-chunky nineties platforms. Nothing is too ugly or too marginal to be repurposed at this point, although a lot of stuff has been repurposed often enough that it's old hat before it's even been shown - like, we've already seen New Look revival and disco seventies so many times.

I personally am still entranced by early nineties revival, but intrigued to see that we're moving into late nineties revival. I miss the late nineties - I had some awesome mod-type platform boots, for one thing.

It will be interesting to see whether late nineties revival is a strong enough trend to displace the lumbersexual/hitler youth haircut thing. I will be sad about one thing, though - my conventional men's styleblogger haircut is very flattering on me, and the choice will be either to look absolutely dated or to wear something that doesn't look as good on my giant pumpkin head.
posted by Frowner at 10:44 AM on February 10, 2016 [2 favorites]


Is she talking about "fashion victims"? That concept has been around for 25 years.
posted by demiurge at 10:46 AM on February 10, 2016


I'm going to go make a neopet right now.
posted by 7segment at 10:46 AM on February 10, 2016 [4 favorites]


The author has a promising future in postmodern lit crit theory.

I hate to burst anyone's bubble, but that field is not doing so well either from a growth or an earnings standpoint
posted by clockzero at 10:46 AM on February 10, 2016 [9 favorites]


I loved this article, and I love it every time Mary H.K. Choi writes about fashion and her mom. I'm not seeing how Choi is trashing individual taste or "random women wearing clothes." Her thesis is merely that the internet has a homogenizing effect on street style (yes) and she considers that a loss (a perfectly fine opinion). I feel like people here are judging the article based on her writing style, which isn't very establishment.
posted by peripathetic at 10:46 AM on February 10, 2016 [20 favorites]


I understood most, but not all, of the words in the article but not when they are put together in some of those orders? Is this article ironic? Or something?

Goddamit, get off my lawn.
posted by Justinian at 10:47 AM on February 10, 2016 [1 favorite]


There are also so many places and services now to construct a wardrobe for you ..one they assure you will be modern, hip, not too flashy .. That everyone ends up wearing the same thing at the same time with very little personality - like note the seemingly unstoppable rising tide of the old prep stuff, and if you're a fashion nerd it makes everything very bland.

It's like walking into a Muji store. Everytime I walk in I'm half convinced I should throw everything in my house out and buy everything Muji offers so my entire house/life will be perfectly matching, functional, tasteful beige earth tones made of beautiful tactile materials ...but then it wouldn't be MY house, you know?
posted by The Whelk at 10:48 AM on February 10, 2016 [8 favorites]


If there's a chance in hell that Swears, Jumps, MC & Power boots or Buffalos are coming back into production (and not just tiny, limited runs or $700 co-branded seasonal lines with Solestruck or DollsKill or whatever), I'll be one happy fashion victim.
posted by Unicorn on the cob at 10:52 AM on February 10, 2016


Recently I nearly got run over cause I was gaping at a young black man in what I could only describe as Hamilton-chic. Long black purple (velvet?!) 18th century riding jacket with a fur trim on the collar, red vest over a stripped shirt, tight white jeans and shin length lace up black boots. That 's some aspirational look right there. That did not come from the top SEO results for what to wear. That's the kind of thing to make you wish you had the right kind of job or outlook to get away putting that on in public.
posted by The Whelk at 10:53 AM on February 10, 2016 [27 favorites]


I'm not seeing how Choi is trashing individual taste or "random women wearing clothes." Her thesis is merely that the internet has a homogenizing effect on street style (yes) and she considers that a loss (a perfectly fine opinion).

I get that, I think it's just that the sole counter-example she offers is literally unwearable by her own admission, so where does that leave anyone?
posted by Rock Steady at 10:54 AM on February 10, 2016


Years ago, I wrote a cyberpunk opening sentence for the Bulwer-Lytton Fiction Contest that was remarkably like this entire article. Too bad about the faulty machine translation. I'm sure it read beautifully in its original Hipster.
posted by the sobsister at 10:56 AM on February 10, 2016 [12 favorites]


Recently I nearly got run over cause I was gaping at a young black man in what I could only describe as Hamilton-chic.

Yeah, so, I got my tax refund back this morning and am struggling very, very hard to not buy a Revolutionary War uniform. Those coats, man. Those coats.
posted by palomar at 10:57 AM on February 10, 2016 [5 favorites]


I loved this article, and I love it every time Mary H.K. Choi writes about fashion and her mom. I'm not seeing how Choi is trashing individual taste or "random women wearing clothes." Her thesis is merely that the internet has a homogenizing effect on street style (yes) and she considers that a loss (a perfectly fine opinion). I feel like people here are judging the article based on her writing style, which isn't very establishment.

And yet it is precisely her writing style which trashes on random women wearing clothes - she constructs this sort of straw woman who is THIS type of person because she wears THESE things, and of course you can just tell that she's THIS type of person, because only THIS type of person would wear THESE things, and - worst of all - think she was being original and skillfully negotiating capitalism. Unlike the writer with the Byblos jacket, who is so skillfully negotiating capitalism that she recognizes that cool results from talking about the impossibility of cool. (It's all recursions.)
posted by Frowner at 10:57 AM on February 10, 2016 [7 favorites]


I feel like people here are judging the article based on her writing style, which isn't very establishment.

In the spirit of being intellectually honest - I'm only judging her writing style because I can honestly not even parse what her actual thesis is. And that's not to say the article is in any way bad - there are lots of things I can't parse in this world.

For example:

It's when you wear a choker with an o-ring and a septum piercing and have to pair it with the correct light-blue mom jeans or column skirt.

Clearly this means something to Choi. Something about the hypothetical wearer is expressed through these particular items. It is completely and totally lost on me.

And again, that's not to say it's her fault or that this is bad - it's just way, way, way inside baseball. I would like to understand it and your one-sentence summary is very enlightening. But it's crazy how complex a seemingly simple topic can be.
posted by GuyZero at 10:59 AM on February 10, 2016 [2 favorites]


This article and thread reminded me literally just now to look up a garment I'd enjoy very much, this jacket. And there goes Whelk not a moment later, talking about a very striking fellow in a splendid purple velvet jacket.

I feel like the Universe has endorsed my sartorial whims.
posted by Lou Stuells at 11:01 AM on February 10, 2016 [6 favorites]


Her thesis is merely that the internet has a homogenizing effect on street style (yes) and she considers that a loss (a perfectly fine opinion). I feel like people here are judging the article based on her writing style, which isn't very establishment.

I think there are some criticisms of writing style in this thread, and they're a bit out of place, but no, we're mostly here debating the thesis that you accept as given. The internet is not homogenizing street style. Street style has always been homogeneous. But you know, us millennial women, we're so [insert a thing].
posted by capricorn at 11:02 AM on February 10, 2016


Recently I nearly got run over cause I was gaping at a young black man in what I could only describe as Hamilton-chic. Long black purple (velvet?!) 18th century riding jacket with a fur trim on the collar, red vest over a stripped shirt, tight white jeans and shin length lace up black boots.

I saw Fashion Snape at the gym - I didn't nearly get run over because there are no cars in the weight area, but I did have to restrain myself from staring. But at the same time, Fashion Snape was wearing a very provincial style - black joggers, black short sleeved tee over black long sleeved tee, more pulled together than it sounds.

And that's part of the deal - a lot of styles which are innovative and exciting in the provinces and require some commitment to prepare and pull off are just blah on the coast. Fashion Snape stood out like a fascinating, short, crimson-streaked Snape Hair beacon here, but would be of no account anywhere else. That's one reason I have a little trouble with the "and people wear this and it just shows how terrible and cliched they are".

If it were 2010, I would start a street style blog which highlighted truly regional style, instead of just trolling around for the most New York-like Minneapolitans.
posted by Frowner at 11:04 AM on February 10, 2016 [4 favorites]


I get that, I think it's just that the sole counter-example she offers is literally unwearable by her own admission, so where does that leave anyone?

I think that sole counter example is her admission that "non-algorithmic" dressing is difficult, and it leaves her and her alone in the position of trying to make it work somehow, which may entail finding a tailor to make coral palazzo pants.
posted by peripathetic at 11:04 AM on February 10, 2016


Sorry, but the article is bad. It uses jargon like an anti-language, to make a point that is so banal it hardly even needed to be made.

As for ontological, I think she means taxonomical.
posted by tel3path at 11:05 AM on February 10, 2016 [15 favorites]


Those coats, man. Those coats.

Let's increase market demand so they get mass produced, Founding Fathers Fashion. So hot right now,

(Easily half my wardrobe these days comes directly from looking at MGM publicity stills)
posted by The Whelk at 11:06 AM on February 10, 2016 [3 favorites]


So, identify a group of women and sneer at their clothes? I've never seen that tactic before on the Internet!
posted by GenjiandProust at 11:07 AM on February 10, 2016 [3 favorites]


But you know, us [young 20s] women, we're so [insert a thing].

Properly meta-d that for you. You know you're past when these sorts of screeds don't make you feel anxious, as is their purpose.
posted by bonehead at 11:08 AM on February 10, 2016


But you know, us millennial women, we're so [insert a thing].

And I'm coming back and making a second comment because I have a lot of opinions about this matter (it's personal; I'm 25 and I like fashion). The specific "thing" that we millennials "are" is apparently that we're completely oblivious to our own consumerism. That we manage to exchange currency for goods while spinning elaborate yarns about our self-sufficiency. That we think we are unique when we are conformist. And this is bullshit. We are all very well aware of what we are doing and how we are participating in a fashion economy, and we are as critical of it as we are celebratory.

On preview: Properly meta-d that for you. You know you're past when these sorts of screeds don't make you feel anxious, as is their purpose. That doesn't really make it okay though?
posted by capricorn at 11:10 AM on February 10, 2016 [5 favorites]


the ontological aspects of internet style

The ontological "aspects" of a certain style? So...that it exists in the first place, or...?


I basically think this article is as hilariously inscrutable as everyone else, but I can help translate this bit: the "ontological aspects" here means the interest in exhaustive taxonomy, the enumeration of what kinds of things there are, which can also be called an ontology.

If you look at the paragraph where this appears the interpretation is much clearer:
[U]rban woodsman, health-goth, normcore, athleisure, vaporwave, soft-grunge. I love fashion taxonomy. I adore the ontological aspects of Internet style; the ever-expanding Dewey Decimal System of it all is a delight.
posted by grobstein at 11:11 AM on February 10, 2016 [3 favorites]


Also I have to LOL at someone who writes an article about "fashion lemmings" and mentions she's into KonMari in that very article, unless this whole thing is actually tongue-in-cheek.
posted by capricorn at 11:13 AM on February 10, 2016


(Easily half my wardrobe these days comes directly from looking at MGM publicity stills)

It's a good look but how do you keep from dying of heat exhaustion? Not even kidding - I like suits, but perhaps I have become too acclimated to wearing less clothing all the time.
posted by GuyZero at 11:14 AM on February 10, 2016 [1 favorite]


That doesn't really make it okay though?

You mean that entire industries exist to exert peer pressure to consume and induce anxiety social in people? Or that they're often targeted at young women?
posted by bonehead at 11:14 AM on February 10, 2016


I used to be a Fuccboi. Now I want to be a Rude Boy, like my dad.

that rickson is so pattern recognition, circa 2003, plus we were wearing 'em in 1986, fresh from the DAV.
posted by valkane at 11:14 AM on February 10, 2016 [2 favorites]


And yet it is precisely her writing style which trashes on random women wearing clothes -

I think we're reading this article very differently then, because I see critique, not criticism.
posted by peripathetic at 11:15 AM on February 10, 2016 [1 favorite]


like note the seemingly unstoppable rising tide of the old prep stuff, and if you're a fashion nerd it makes everything very bland

See, again, this is a very coastal thing. I met someone who was a dealer in old prep stuff a couple of months ago, and it was super exciting to talk about, like, eighties intarsia. He had an old wool sweater with ducks on - no one wears that sort of thing around here.

Very occasionally I see kids on the street in the kinds of clothes that get derided as fuccboi clothes (including virtually the only new silhouette for men that I can remember in my entire life - those relatively narrow tapered joggers with a narrow, tunic length knit shirt and a baggy, shorter garment over the top - and it's so interesting to see how that silhouette looks in the flesh. Plus it must have been a bear to source, even with the internet.

There's some very snappy dressers here, and certainly people are influenced by the internet, but both one's access to materials and one's access to appropriate places to wear something are limited. For instance, it would be difficult to dress a la Whelk in most jobs here, even the ones where most people wore suits.
posted by Frowner at 11:15 AM on February 10, 2016 [3 favorites]


(although it's never too soon for Eileen Fisher! I thrifted my first Eileen Fisher item when I was 22)

SHHHH! Let the fashion snobs continue to express disdain for the brand. That means more exquisitely plain silk dresses and long, fine-knit merino column skirts for you and I to plunder across eBay and thrift stores.

*
As to the essay itself ... I read it, and I think the writer suffers from having someone else write this earlier and better. Cintra Wilson's recent Fear And Clothing: Unbuckling American Style launches into chapter 14 with a dive through 20 years of fashion magazines, careers into a reference to Kurt Anderson's piece on the confusing fashion landscape for Vanity Fair, then concludes:
I discovered that all these heavyweight fashion intellects had essentially drawn the same conclusion:

There had been no big paradigm shifts in fashion for the last twenty or more years because all the previous decades and their mutually exclusive style signatures were now, all happening simultaneously.
I think the Choi piece would have been stronger if she had grounded it in something along the lines of how modern retail and social media are making it challenging to define anything resembling "new" fashion because truly, we're living in an age where the old definition of fashion -- where access to "new" things determined how and when trends were set -- is completely irrelevant. She's groping toward a new definition of fashion, but her piece lacks the rigor to get there. I hope she can take another run at it, because she's got the germ of an interesting idea here.
posted by sobell at 11:21 AM on February 10, 2016 [7 favorites]


I think we're reading this article very differently then, because I see critique, not criticism.

See, to me she's drawing a distinction between herself-and-people-like-her, who have the wit to be paralyzed before the algorithms, hoard their unwearable slightly-obscure-vintage-brand items, etc, and people who just think they're self aware.

If she wanted to take this to its proper conclusion, she could recognize that her form of critique is just as implicit in the fashion system as people who have the hypercorrect "unique" item of the moment. It's a fashion system, and "look at the sheeple" is just another piece of the machine. Strange game, the only way to win is et patati et patata.
posted by Frowner at 11:21 AM on February 10, 2016 [3 favorites]


I got my tax refund back this morning and am struggling very, very hard to not buy a Revolutionary War uniform. Those coats, man. Those coats.

DO IT.
posted by Sokka shot first at 11:25 AM on February 10, 2016 [6 favorites]


Also I have to LOL at someone who writes an article about "fashion lemmings" and mentions she's into KonMari in that very article, unless this whole thing is actually tongue-in-cheek.

I think in this universe there is a very subtle dialectic about originality vs. trendiness and certain sotto voce admissions that you are doing the same thing as everyone else help balance the tone for your audience.

So I don't think the whole thing is tongue-in-cheek, that's overstating it. But the Konmari thing is a gesture made with a shared understanding that, yeah, I'm doing something we're all doing.

Finding the knife's-edge threshold where you become too trendy is a difficult matter of social coding. That's why this article brings to bear such a bewildering amount of specific expertise -- it's making a tricky argument that needs to be supported by at least the appearance of exact, technical reasoning.
posted by grobstein at 11:26 AM on February 10, 2016 [2 favorites]


I feel like people here are judging the article based on her writing style, which isn't very establishment.

I'm certainly judging the article based on her writing style, because I have no bloody idea what she is trying to communicate. This article sounds like it was generated from a Markov chain model trained on a combination of Vogue articles and random Twitter feeds; I recognize most of the words, and I think the grammar is basically all standard English, but having read all the way through I couldn't even guess at her point.

And it's not like I'm totally fashion-oblivious, either. I used to design clothes, Hot Topic carried one of my pieces for like five minutes, the shirt I'm wearing this very minute is one I sewed myself from an original pattern. But I'm all Seattle-egalitarian with a bit of ex-goth theater around the edges, while the author appears to be stuck in some East Coast status hierarchy nightmare, so neither her references nor her priorities mean anything to me.
posted by Mars Saxman at 11:28 AM on February 10, 2016 [19 favorites]


See, to me she's drawing a distinction between herself-and-people-like-her, who have the wit to be paralyzed before the algorithms, hoard their unwearable slightly-obscure-vintage-brand items, etc, and people who just think they're self aware.

How is she "hoarding" when she's kept one vintage jacket after Konmari-ing her wardrobe, through which we can tell that she is not immune to groupthink, even more so after she's admitted to being into a bunch of meaningless fashion microtrends?
posted by peripathetic at 11:29 AM on February 10, 2016 [1 favorite]


I got my tax refund back this morning and am struggling very, very hard to not buy a Revolutionary War uniform. Those coats, man. Those coats.

DO IT.


I literally yelled when the photo loaded.
posted by The Whelk at 11:30 AM on February 10, 2016 [7 favorites]


I feel like people here are judging the article based on her writing style, which isn't very establishment.

I've been reading a bunch of Sovereign Citizen madness lately and this article is surprisingly legible.

I got my tax refund back this morning and am struggling very, very hard to not buy a Revolutionary War uniform. Those coats, man. Those coats.

Speaking of Sovereign Citizens...
posted by robocop is bleeding at 11:33 AM on February 10, 2016 [1 favorite]


That is some furious Othering.

Do you get to be a silverback fashion writer if you churn out enough of this?
posted by benzenedream at 11:36 AM on February 10, 2016


That was well weapon! Totally Mexico! Mary H. K. Choi is a self-facilitating media node.
posted by kcds at 11:37 AM on February 10, 2016 [13 favorites]


I got my tax refund back this morning and am struggling very, very hard to not buy a Revolutionary War uniform. Those coats, man. Those coats.

Nothing beats the real deal, but it's interesting to me that clothing lines catering to the Sloane set carry way more militaristic coats than the average high street store.
posted by peripathetic at 11:39 AM on February 10, 2016 [2 favorites]


So I don't think the whole thing is tongue-in-cheek, that's overstating it. But the Konmari thing is a gesture made with a shared understanding that, yeah, I'm doing something we're all doing.

Finding the knife's-edge threshold where you become too trendy is a difficult matter of social coding. That's why this article brings to bear such a bewildering amount of specific expertise -- it's making a tricky argument that needs to be supported by at least the appearance of exact, technical reasoning.


That makes sense. Is the extremely heavy use of fashion jargon also a gesture in itself? Like, is she intentionally overdoing it as a form of self-deprecating irony? I don't know the jargon so I can't read the tone.
posted by Gerald Bostock at 11:40 AM on February 10, 2016


The author has a promising future in postmodern lit crit theory. Or in being a fuccboi.

I remember once having a conversation with a grad school friend about what comes after postmodernism. I wish I could go back and tell us that it's fuccbois.
posted by octobersurprise at 11:42 AM on February 10, 2016 [10 favorites]



How is she "hoarding"


But "to hoard" doesn't just mean "to have a lot of stuff"; it also means to treasure up a supply against a future need. I don't think it's especially negative, actually - I have hoarded up a couple of very interesting vintage jackets myself and I will never let them go. (One of them is an early eighties fake newsprint canvas jacket with depressing headlines, one is a seventies reversible one with a flatly appliqued red sun on one side and some abstract shapes on the other. I also have an Eileen Fisher tuxedo jacket with a silk collar and an oversized velvet jacket, each of which sees wear perhaps once a year. If I had a Byblos jacket, I would hoard it up myself. And don't even get me started on scarves - if anyone is a hoarder, I am, at least scarf-wise. I am not coming to this from a "why do you have your silly jacket" standpoint. Hell, I have a couple of dresses hoarded up, and I do not plan ever to have occasion to wear dresses again owing to gender reasons.)
posted by Frowner at 11:48 AM on February 10, 2016 [2 favorites]


I didn't understand *any* of this article. I probably could if I tried but I suspect it wouldn't be worth the headache.
posted by HypotheticalWoman at 11:49 AM on February 10, 2016


Frowner, what a truly enviable wardrobe! I wish there were pictures!
posted by peripathetic at 11:54 AM on February 10, 2016


I had a similar feeling when reading this as when reading those short music reviews in the back of The Wire music mag. I ostensibly love the topic, but damn if I don't know what the hell it's supposed to be about.
posted by gorbichov at 11:56 AM on February 10, 2016


That newspaper headline jacket sounds amazing and something a villian In Vertigo comic would wear
posted by The Whelk at 11:57 AM on February 10, 2016 [2 favorites]


I liked that piece.

I felt I somehow understood it as a whole without being able to grasp the meaning of any single sentence within it.
posted by jamjam at 11:58 AM on February 10, 2016 [1 favorite]


Fashion Snape stood out like a fascinating, short, crimson-streaked Snape Hair beacon

Fashion Snape sounds awesome. I want Fashion Snape to be my Patronus.
posted by Metroid Baby at 11:58 AM on February 10, 2016 [2 favorites]


I love the fact that you just post a fashion article on MF and people show up running around yelling waving their hands in the air.

This article sounds like it was generated from a Markov chain model trained on a combination of Vogue articles and random Twitter feeds;


As does a lot of internet writing these days. It’s current hip language which has never had inclusiveness as a goal, but this was hard to get through.

She did start to slip up and make more sense as it went on though, and what I took from it was a criticism that people were dressing by grabbing one of everything that is trendy at the moment and putting it on and calling it street style, without any thought to whether it looks good or works together. "I have checked all the boxes" as style. Or maybe that’s just what I think and she didn’t say that at all.
posted by bongo_x at 11:59 AM on February 10, 2016 [3 favorites]


Metafilter fashion blog! Surely virtually everyone on here has some characteristic garment, and we'd get 90% of our content from the Whelk anyway.

Thrifting for vintage stayed pretty decent here in MPLS until about 2004-2005. The last truly fine thing I got was a $14.99 Paris-made fifties crimson duchesse silk-satin coat with a Watteau back and a quilted lining. It truly doesn't fit in the shoulders at all, but I have not been able to bear to part with it. I need a dress form so I can display it, I guess. My trouble with this KonMari business is that all my stuff sparks joy, and yet I still manage to have too much.

(The saddest thing about the headline jacket is that it just barely fits in the shoulders now I've been lifting weights.)
posted by Frowner at 12:00 PM on February 10, 2016 [5 favorites]


This is a great piece for a very narrow audience. She's talking about a very small subset of people who not only care a lot about fashion, but a particular kind of very current fashion.

I'm not in that audience but I observe it sometimes, and I like her writing style enough to have thoroughly enjoyed the piece.

I'm confident that if Mary HK Choi passed you or me on the street, she wouldn't even notice what you or I were wearing, much less render judgment upon it.
posted by pocketfullofrye at 12:01 PM on February 10, 2016 [2 favorites]


I feel like I intercepted an alien communication and tried to run it through Google Translate. And I'm not even talking about the article, just the comments here.
posted by Foosnark at 12:07 PM on February 10, 2016


Paris-made fifties crimson duchesse silk-satin coat with a Watteau back and a quilted lining

I've always found descriptions of clothes so much more satisfying than the actual thing itself.
posted by maggiemaggie at 12:44 PM on February 10, 2016 [1 favorite]


All I want to know is what happens when fashion re-purposes the 90s insane chunky interpretation of sixties clothing.
posted by Ferreous at 12:48 PM on February 10, 2016 [2 favorites]


We're all fucked when that happens
posted by Ferreous at 12:48 PM on February 10, 2016


As does a lot of internet writing these days.

Well, yes, but a lot of internet writing these days actually is produced by robots, ever since those troglodytes in the ad industry came up with the bizarre notion that blogs were somehow about making money, of all things, and proceeded to drive all the actual humans out with their endless formula-driven content farms. If real people are communicating with each other using this sort of language, I guess I just haven't come across the parts of the Internet where they do it.
posted by Mars Saxman at 12:49 PM on February 10, 2016 [2 favorites]


what I could only describe as Hamilton-chic

A couple of years ago during Peak Tall Boot I remember making a bet with myself that the variant that would look dated most quickly was the two-toned version that was mostly black but with a band of brown leather at the top. I could never have predicted that come 2016, seeing those boots would just make me think of HERCULES MULLIGAN.
posted by yarrow at 12:53 PM on February 10, 2016 [4 favorites]


Why do y'all have to make me feel bad about deciding to save money by not buying Hamilton touring company tickets?
posted by GuyZero at 12:59 PM on February 10, 2016 [1 favorite]


I mean an algorithm is "pants first, THEN your shoes" and thus all dressing is basically algorithmic. It's the variables she doesn't seem to like.
posted by tel3path at 1:09 PM on February 10, 2016


the "ontological aspects" here means the interest in exhaustive taxonomy, the enumeration of what kinds of things there are, which can also be called an ontology

You're right about this, I think, but it's still a weird autodidact-ish solecism to use this extremely field-specific sense of "ontology" (that is basically computer/information-science jargon) in the dek of a fashion article. No one who knew what the word meant would expect people to get this out of it.
posted by RogerB at 1:10 PM on February 10, 2016 [2 favorites]


After I got over my initial WTF?!? reaction to this piece I kind of enjoyed it.

A bit like reading a William Gibson short story about fashion from a parallel looking-glass universe. I kept expecting Cayce Pollard to walk in and start explaining about jet-lag, delayed souls, and her knock-off MA-1 flight jacket.
posted by cstross at 1:23 PM on February 10, 2016 [9 favorites]


I think I need this person to be my personal shopper. She can help me figure out how to navigate an unfortunate body type, a lack of professional grooming norms, and a desire to think as little as possible about fashion.
posted by anotherpanacea at 1:33 PM on February 10, 2016


oh cool, tim rogers has a style blog
posted by Sebmojo at 1:35 PM on February 10, 2016 [1 favorite]




You know what trips me out is the style referred to as "fuccboi" is also how a grip of queer particularly genderqueer/NB internet people signal to one another, and it's weird as fuck to me that this style that if you see it with like a Pricetapes patch or that "BORN TO DIE / WORLD IS A FUCK" shirt or other weird joke shirts from Skreend it's like oh, you're probably v. gay and p. internet and maybe a furry. I can't tell if I am ahead or behind the curve.
posted by beefetish at 1:56 PM on February 10, 2016 [2 favorites]


This article is about taking the easy way out and doing what everyone else is doing, fashion-wise. It's about not taking risks and avoiding difficult pieces of clothing and also about the great levelling device that is the Internet, spitting up the most inoffensive items that are Pinned and 'Grammed until anything really interesting is no longer visible. It means that you could Google say, "Coachella look", and get a bunch of people all looking essentially the same.

Was it different when you had to go places to see how people dressed in those spaces, and had to invent your outfit based on bands you liked, and the friends you had and the people you admired, and the shops in your town and what was going on in the landscape around you? I tend to think so. It took years before punks had seen enough other punks for there to be a default punk costume. Same with ravers, hippies, teds, burners, &c. Until that image gelled you could do anything you wanted in those scenes as far as clothing went, which meant you had to be creative and make stuff up (often in opposition to some other idea, i.e. not preppy, not hippie, not square, not like your mom). Now it seems that curating a "look" with all the right accompaniments is what is often rising to the top in fashion, not inventing new things.

I don't think the writer has positioned herself as immune, or even better than this trend (hence the Kondo reference). She's disappointed, yes. It's not criticism to say you're disappointed that there seems to be so little creativity in fashion being seen by a wide audience.
posted by oneirodynia at 1:57 PM on February 10, 2016 [14 favorites]


So I didn't get any of this. As a first step towards understanding,
I looked up "fuccboi" on Urban Dictionary. Now I'm even more confused.
posted by Omnomnom at 2:00 PM on February 10, 2016


By the way, I believe this is the Byblos jacket she is referring to.

In the article, her Byblos jacket is cashmere and cropped ("a tiny waist that ends several inches above my own"). Unless the link is wrong, that is a long double-breasted coat cut of "technical fabric". I am dying to see that jacket.
posted by peripathetic at 2:10 PM on February 10, 2016


On Female Fuccboi Style

I misparsed that and was thinking, well, ideally GDSM, but in reality whatever you were just wearing, but looking better in it.
posted by sebastienbailard at 2:16 PM on February 10, 2016


actually never mind please mark this style uncool so i can continue rocking the vest with the same Pierre et Gilles Meduse patch w increasingly tighter jeans and not be mistaken for a straight or cis
posted by beefetish at 2:26 PM on February 10, 2016


""I think that the internet has made it such that everyone dresses in a way that is supposed to be cutely off-kilter but is, in fact, formulaic" - what's so hard about that? "

What's so hard about that is that it's the same AN OLD critique that gets trotted out to every ostensibly individualistic fashion movement (cf. punk, alternative) — what's so hard about it is that it's boring. People whom the author thinks should care about that critique won't, and people who do care about that critique are betraying their distance from zeitgeist.

The other hard part about it is that it assumes that consumer capitalism is a viable path to expressing authentic individualism. #MarxReactsGIF

"There had been no big paradigm shifts in fashion for the last twenty or more years because all the previous decades and their mutually exclusive style signatures were now, all happening simultaneously.
I think the Choi piece would have been stronger if she had grounded it in something along the lines of how modern retail and social media are making it challenging to define anything resembling "new" fashion because truly, we're living in an age where the old definition of fashion -- where access to "new" things determined how and when trends were set -- is completely irrelevant. She's groping toward a new definition of fashion, but her piece lacks the rigor to get there. I hope she can take another run at it, because she's got the germ of an interesting idea here.
"

That's a point worth discussing, but part of the problem with discussing it is that it's been a topic of pomo interrogation for pretty much the whole time it's been true — I remember my mom talking about how nice it was that grunge made all her old clothes cool again, and wondering what would happen when Gen X nostalgia was the default.
Professor Hubert Farnsworth: I'll have some Soylent Green, with a slice of Soylent Orange and some Soylent coleslaw.
Mildred: Huh?
Leela: [whispering] It's the 20th century, Professor.
Professor Hubert Farnsworth: Oh, right. I'll have a croque monsieur, the paella, two mutton pills, and a stein of mead.
Leela: I'll just have a small injection of Fem-a-slim.
posted by klangklangston at 2:46 PM on February 10, 2016 [2 favorites]


I kept expecting Cayce Pollard to walk in and start explaining about jet-lag, delayed souls, and her knock-off MA-1 flight jacket.

I think the Choi piece would have been stronger if she had grounded it in something along the lines of how modern retail and social media are making it challenging to define anything resembling "new" fashion because truly, we're living in an age where the old definition of fashion -- where access to "new" things determined how and when trends were set -- is completely irrelevant.

It's funny that Charlie Stross shows up to invoke Gibson because this notion of the old and the new happening simultaneously is exactly what I thought of wearing sobell's comment.

In a world where current bands compete for the attention of teenagers with bands from 30 years ago, what does it mean to argue about what fashions are current or not? Indeed Anderson's VF piece is exactly apropos: "current" fashion seems frozen in time and yet fashion as whole somehow moves forward.

Also, her particular markers are really, really inscrutable.
posted by GuyZero at 3:04 PM on February 10, 2016 [2 favorites]


Metafilter fashion blog!

I imagine this to be a bunch of photos of the Whelk (mostly shirtless) and everyone else wearing burlap sacks all looking confused at a pair of trousers, like the apes banging bones together in 2001
posted by danny the boy at 3:26 PM on February 10, 2016 [4 favorites]


Metafilter fashion blog!

uniqlo has made some amazing advances in the world of polo shirts.
posted by GuyZero at 3:41 PM on February 10, 2016 [2 favorites]


I feel like the language here is probably as inscrutable as, say, a My Brother My Brother and Me podcast where there are persistent namedrops to 90s era wrestling fiction and the Sonic the Hedgehog franchise canon but because it happens to be in the genre of typically not-dudebro genre of fashion and pop culture this whole thread's been throwing a fit because this article wasn't written with them in mind

but yeah, like other commenters have said, it's like she's sad that people are dressing with fashiony components instead of having a tie-together theme. like her issue is that trendy fashion is like a Ubisoft game: a lot of fucking around with small side-games in a big open-world dominated by tropes and quests you've already played in a million other games that did it better with no new mechanics whatsoever. she wants to see more indie games that are less borrowed ideas and more about gameplay and innovation even if they fail because at least that method brought us Portal

and I don't think she's casting aspersions on specific other women, fuccboism to her describes a kind of attitude towards fashion that is more consumerism than considered and innovative ideas. it might have helped for her to dissect the fashion in her linked article describing Tinder fuccbois but she didn't do it. personally, I didn't think that it was necessary because I travel around in groups where Tinder fuccbois are kind of a known quantity but I suppose that's just me
posted by runt at 3:55 PM on February 10, 2016 [5 favorites]


I've learned it looks way too BDSM secretary with a pencil skirt.

Girl, slide that Byblos jacket over here because I do not believe there is such a thing. Septum piercing and collar represent.

Also, regarding Eileen Fisher - if there is one thing I learned from thrifting, it's that the name on the tag don't mean shit. You can edge up crap from Chico's if you're motivated to do so. It's about the quality fabric and the fit and how it makes you feel.



I kept up with the article pretty well, even though it read like a ranty Vogue robot ate a bowl of magnets. For the life of me, though, I still can't figure out how she came up with the term "fuccboi" - I mean, I know what a fuckboy is, beleive me, I have the abandoned Tinder account to prove it. But "female fuccboi" is...what. This isn't even get off my lawn; I am fascinated by the way language changes and forms itself, I'm intrigued by slang, and I am pretty sure she pulled that from the deepest corner of her ass.
posted by louche mustachio at 4:00 PM on February 10, 2016 [11 favorites]


fuccbois seem like less masc hypebeasts tbph though maybe i'm missing something
posted by beefetish at 4:09 PM on February 10, 2016 [1 favorite]


fuccboi is just an alternate spelling to fuck boy. I dunno why that specific permutation on the spelling but I've seen it used that way (just today, actually, on Jordan Jesse Go)

I think her fuccboi is a critique of a mindless, consumerist driven ideal of fashion that's popular on fashion blogs/lookbooks/etc where you're just mashing up random elements of different aesthetics because it has cultural capital but you really don't know what you're doing or why you're doing it besides that you think it looks nice and you're pretty sure someone else rocked that cardigan pretty well

I mean, I think she maybe holds a higher bar for fashion than most people do (ex me) but it's an article on a pop fashion site so it's kind of to be expected
posted by runt at 4:11 PM on February 10, 2016 [1 favorite]


Shop vintage and thrift, and Ross sometimes. Splurge now and then at the mall, but don't go nuts.

Now please get on with your life already.
posted by Ursula Hitler at 4:19 PM on February 10, 2016


yeah I get kinda weird when fashion people/blogs crap on 'mindless, consumerist driven ideal of fashion that's popular on fashion blogs/lookbooks/etc where you're just mashing up random elements of different aesthetics because it has cultural capital but you really don't know what you're doing or why you're doing it besides that you think it looks nice and you're pretty sure someone else rocked that cardigan pretty well' bc at that point it seems like the line is pretty fine, more or less like any other of the infinite capitalism inflected ways in which we are obligated to like stuff better than other people

i mean really thats the part that becomes interesting to me once i avoid doing work by way of looking at this article a lot, is i feel like people in this thread are groping toward the thing that comes up when the defining yourself by your material goods method becomes confounded by ready availability of same

also metafilter doesnt do street fashion stuff very well, shocker
posted by beefetish at 4:19 PM on February 10, 2016 [2 favorites]


oh yeah, her expectation that fashion for the masses be freed from consumer impulses is not super realistic and her point of contention is pretty much a subjective taste thing less than an actual, rigorous criticism of anything but a trend she happened to have noticed.

I just wanted to give her the benefit of the doubt since the first 80% of this thread was 'hurr durr young people' in the way that Snapchat thread from yesterday was also very 'hurr durr young people' at first
posted by runt at 4:35 PM on February 10, 2016 [5 favorites]


But "female fuccboi" is...what. This isn't even get off my lawn; I am fascinated by the way language changes and forms itself, I'm intrigued by slang, and I am pretty sure she pulled that from the deepest corner of her ass.

She was trying to define the female equivalent of this and queried Twitter for a description. You can see it for yourself here.
posted by peripathetic at 4:37 PM on February 10, 2016 [5 favorites]


See, to me "Kinfolk Lolita" (from the Twitter) would be better. "Fuccboi" is...I dunno, when I've read people complaining about fuccboi fashion (this spelling, not fuckboy-a-la-tinder), it seems like there's an element of femme-phobia in it, whereas if you follow that sort of thing, "Kinfolk Lolita" is pretty hilarious.
posted by Frowner at 4:43 PM on February 10, 2016 [4 favorites]


But at the same time, you have to be so far down the rabbit hole already - like, I am not proud that I know why "Kinfolk Lolita" is funny - that it makes criticizing anyone else look pretty sad.
posted by Frowner at 4:44 PM on February 10, 2016 [1 favorite]


The Volante coats look pretty good on the street except that I don't think they go well with carrying any kind of bag. That is a difficulty with the military styles that assume a jennet, batman, or limber to do your carrying.

(Yoga mat bag would be a plausible shape...)
posted by clew at 4:44 PM on February 10, 2016 [1 favorite]


Kinfolk Lolita is too narrow though, no? Seems like more of a subcategory than a handy but imperfect catchall.
posted by peripathetic at 4:47 PM on February 10, 2016


kinfolk lolita would be a frosty diss for a wide swath of people who i am tired of seeing on se division, i like it.
posted by beefetish at 4:48 PM on February 10, 2016


The jargon-overload doesn't put me off half as much as the tone of withering contempt. It's...baffling, to me, really. But these things usually are. I recognize that I am not the target audience for this article. However, I am someone who is a little curious about fashion and developing a better personal style, but when I encounter things like this article, I'm like, "nope, no thanks, not worth it." If this is the kind of mentality that attention to style fosters...eegh.
posted by zchyrs at 5:30 PM on February 10, 2016 [2 favorites]


Classic Mean Girl venom, that. She can go hang with the GOMI crowd, they deserve each other.
posted by lemonade at 5:35 PM on February 10, 2016 [1 favorite]


You know what trips me out is the style referred to as "fuccboi" is also how a grip of queer particularly genderqueer/NB internet people signal to one another, and it's weird as fuck to me that this style that if you see it with like a Pricetapes patch or that "BORN TO DIE / WORLD IS A FUCK" shirt or other weird joke shirts from Skreend it's like oh, you're probably v. gay and p. internet and maybe a furry. I can't tell if I am ahead or behind the curve.

Yeah, her use of fuccboi for this was confusing to me because it seems like a quite fraught word and something that has a whole semantic web of meaning that I'm not entirely sure she's taking into account, regarding queerness and gender and sexual orientation and race... But it's Mary H.K. Choi—it's hard to tell whether she's being careless or v. v. careful. I think that's part of why I'm so intrigued by her writing. It's hard to tell!

It is interesting to me how much overlap there is now between things that signal to people as "Internet" or "snackwave" or whatever microtrend vs. just fast fashion plus some irony. I bought my pizza socks at Target! If you spend a lot of time on Instagram, even if you're just there to look at pingame stuff, you'll see a lot of all of the above. I can't wear the diaphanous tiny silk and tiny woven sweater stuff or whatever, but it's all super interesting—I'm quite taken with this "everything is on the map," postmodern fashion world. Also yes please, more epaulets and marching-band jackets. Just make some in my size.


I used to be a Fuccboi. Now I want to be a Rude Boy, like my dad.

You're in luck; dadcore is everywhere you want to be.


I would start a street style blog which highlighted truly regional style, instead of just trolling around for the most New York-like Minneapolitans.

Yes to this. Keeping up a street style blog for a single city or region anywhere in the middle of the country is hard, though. The volume of strange and interesting dressers isn't there. But if it extended to multiple cities and regions, that'd do it, I think.
posted by limeonaire at 5:40 PM on February 10, 2016 [2 favorites]


That was funny af, made me laugh out loud a couple of times. Maybe because I live in Portland and so I know just how real the fuckboi struggle is. Poor sods.
posted by special agent conrad uno at 5:52 PM on February 10, 2016 [2 favorites]


My level of effort as far as fashion goes consists of picking out new t-shirts and new minor league ballcaps. Anything else seems too much like work and I do too much of that already.
posted by jonmc at 5:59 PM on February 10, 2016


Does someone have a picture of Kinfolk Lolita?
posted by divabat at 7:13 PM on February 10, 2016


I'm like Donny, I have no frame of reference here.

But, I did go and google Health Goth, and it appears to refer to some who's interested in the latest dipshitty wearable and wearing nothing but tracksuits. I think.
posted by Existential Dread at 7:42 PM on February 10, 2016 [1 favorite]


I don't take issue with the author's jargon-filled Mean Girl diatribe because I love a hefty serving of shade thrown at fashion try-hards almost as much as I love complicated taxonomies of microtrends.

I love the pointed suggestions in the linked Twitter thread as well as the male counterparts linked by peripatethic upthread.

However— Anyone who spells it 'fuccboi' immediately disarms the word fuckboi/fuckboy, which is saying 'this man is useful only for disposable sex'. She's going after the "haha and then what ;)" of women's street style; all empty curation and no sprezzatura, but what's she's actually doing is skewering a bunch of women who are trying to dress the way they feel but are missing the mark in execution.

The fact that there are zero surprises in an internet-curated ensemble isn't shocking. When you can ask Siri to tell you what the score was from an obscure football match, you have to expect that pieces of fashion are 'curated' algorithmically by machines, both on the commercial side and on Tumblr where they're aired.

Seems like Choi is shaking her fist because the old days of digging thru sample sale racks and making the NYC-LA-London-Paris thrift store rounds, aka individual effort, are going the way of choosing which internet aesthetic you want to dress like today. Which is the same rant you hear from old-school vinyl heads if you wear a Warsaw t-shirt and you're under 35.

Of course old people dress better. They've accumulated a lifetime of experiences and the pieces to go with it. You don't get that when you're 20, even if you spend all your time on style blogs, because all you're doing is teaching yourself an encyclopedic lexicon to draw from without getting your hands dirty and wearing something.

Kinfolk Lolita is so, so perfect though.
posted by a halcyon day at 10:10 PM on February 10, 2016 [5 favorites]


(I'll confess I didn't make it through the entire article. Two of my big peeves are academia-speak and slang that feels super contrived and willfully alienating, and this thing was kind of oozing both.)
posted by Ursula Hitler at 12:34 AM on February 11, 2016 [2 favorites]


This got a lot more comments than I was expecting.
posted by josher71 at 4:00 AM on February 11, 2016 [2 favorites]


This feels less William Gibson to me and more what if Anthony Burgess wrote Zoolander.
posted by kittens for breakfast at 5:12 AM on February 11, 2016 [7 favorites]


The jargon-overload doesn't put me off half as much as the tone of withering contempt.

That is the east coast hierarchy-victim attitude I was talking about; it is endemic to NY-centric fashion culture as far as my outsider perspective goes, this idea that there are things which are In and there are things which are Out and it is so important to know the difference that one may freely heap scorn on anyone who appears not to. Or maybe that's just high school. Is the author perhaps in her very early 20s?

I am so glad to be living in a laissez-faire fashion environment where you just do whatever feels good, and maybe it works or maybe it doesn't, but nobody gives you shit over it.
posted by Mars Saxman at 10:03 AM on February 11, 2016 [1 favorite]


"Yeah, her use of fuccboi for this was confusing to me because it seems like a quite fraught word and something that has a whole semantic web of meaning that I'm not entirely sure she's taking into account, regarding queerness and gender and sexual orientation and race... But it's Mary H.K. Choi—it's hard to tell whether she's being careless or v. v. careful. I think that's part of why I'm so intrigued by her writing. It's hard to tell! "

As a str8/wh/cis on the fringes of slang, watching the metamorphosis of "fuckboi"/"fuccboi" has been really weird — like, it's not mine to get indignant about, but the immediate connotations to me are of queerness, both gender and sexuality, and seeing it get Xeroxed into "useless preening Tinder humps" feels like seeing a distinct oxbow flooded off the slang river by a flood of … well, the kind of fashion-hoppers the article decries.

"I don't take issue with the author's jargon-filled Mean Girl diatribe because I love a hefty serving of shade thrown at fashion try-hards almost as much as I love complicated taxonomies of microtrends."

But then, I feel similarly about "shade," which also seems to have come out on Canal without the detailing.

It was weird to see the MeFi spasms against having to OMG google once or twice, because I tend to think of this as a place that values language play, and that essay was fantastic double-dutch for fashion neologisms.

"That is the east coast hierarchy-victim attitude I was talking about; it is endemic to NY-centric fashion culture as far as my outsider perspective goes, this idea that there are things which are In and there are things which are Out and it is so important to know the difference that one may freely heap scorn on anyone who appears not to. Or maybe that's just high school. Is the author perhaps in her very early 20s? "

That seems a fair cop — I have a couple of friends from the Upper West Side who have totally bought into that status hierarchy, and it can be a weird trip to spend too much time with them, both because they buy heavily into the idea that THERE ARE RULES! to these things and because the signifiers propounded often seem like parochialisms incoherently universalized (it took me a moment over Christmas to realize that a sibling in a play with Ethan Hawke was supposed to be a brag; I was nonplussed realizing that wasn't the beginning of a story, but the whole thing). I'm glad on some level that fashion rules MATTER to some people, because I think that does drive creative innovation, but it also feels like when I was 20 and whether or not a band was truly "garage rock" MATTERED, and (maybe because I'm a dick) that feels like something that people should grow out of as their frame of reference expands with age.
posted by klangklangston at 12:24 PM on February 11, 2016 [6 favorites]


I'd say "parochialisms incoherently universalized" is the reason why I don't like this article. It is not because I'm too lazy to look up the jargon she uses.

If she doesn't know what "ontological" means, why should I have enough confidence that her insider jargon makes sense to even bother with it?

Also, someone who a) wants to have a pair of peach palazzo pants with vents up the centre front to each knee but b) can't figure out how to make such a thing herself... probably doesn't know enough about fashion to be worth listening to?

(I am not going to criticize her for wanting to make such a garment in the first place. De gustibus non est disputandum. Said Mary H K Choi, never.)
posted by tel3path at 1:07 PM on February 11, 2016 [3 favorites]


i haven't loved a metafilter thread so hard since carles got a fpp
posted by beefetish at 1:36 PM on February 11, 2016 [2 favorites]


« Older Dynamic spectrogram of dial-up modem handshake...   |   Reparations, One Meal at a Time Newer »


This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments