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Why I hate
By Gary Effman
OU WANT to dress punk ... you
want to dress funk.
You're having a luau and you were
too busy drinking in Ft. Lauderdale
that you didn't pick up a shirt over
You need a pair of black plastic
sunglasses and Roy Orbison just won't
lend you his.
Or maybe you're sick of that
polyester leisure suit your aunt bought
Have no fear! Vintage Clothing, The
Cat's Meow, and Second Story An-
tiques, all located in tucked away cor-
ners of the second floor of 213 S. State
have become meccas for* just that
"just that jacket, "as well as the ac-
cessories to complete the look.
In an area once completely
dominated by the preppy, proper
fashion world of Wild's and Marti
Walker's, the vintage clothing scene is
beginning to make a dent. People are
looking for sweaters and coats that
aren't adjourned with some ubiquitous
alligator (or is it a croc?); Polo players
are beginning to fall off their horses.
Working towards this end is Keith
Hay the fashionable owner of the Cat's
Meow. The merchandise at the store is
split about half-way between vintage
clothing from the '50s and '60s - such
as bowling shirts and Hawaiian shirts
that would make the hottest surfer
groove, and new fashions such as mossy
German army pants.
"Our clothing is fun," insists Hay.
"Anybody who is looking for an alter-
native style can find it here. We hand
select our own fashions, it's not the
type of clothing you're going to find at
the mall," he added. To illustrate he
held up a block printed '50s shirt com-
menting, "This is an original, not some
Across the corridor from the Cat's
Meow is David McNulty's Vintage
Clothing. The store is a little less
polished than its neighbor, but the
selection is tops. Vintage has one of Ann
Arbor's best selection of tweed cash-
mere overcoats, 100 percent cotton
shirts from the '60s that would have
even the Beaver saying,"GEE!," and
the Mohair and cardigan sweaters that
you could kill your pop for dumping.
But unquestionably the draw of.Vin-
tage Clothing is the tuxedos. Iridescent
blues, brocade, searsucker, and even
your basic wedding cake black and
white tuxedos can be found there. It's
not Jacobson's, you'll have to browse
carefully and sometimes you won't find
exactly what you are looking for, but
when you do you'll know it looks hot.
Half the fun is now knowing what
you're looking for or what you'll find.
As one shopper commented, "I looked
around, I saw the clothes and I liked
them. I went home got some money and
The last store in the trip and probably
the most unique is Second Stary An-
clothing' is disappearing.
It is also important to remember that
although, as McNulty said, "I try to
keep my prices low enough so students
can afford the clothes," these stores are
not cheap. Shirts may run anywhere
from $5 to $30 as will sweaters, and a
cashmere overcoat $60. But when one-
considers that many are rare one-of-a-
kinds, the stores are an oasis of fashion
By Bradford Parks
EVERY TIME I see a guy or girl
with a mohawk, I want to kill
them. I want to jump on them and kick
them and gouge out their eyes with my
fingers. Why? Because they deserve it.
Because they're stupid. Because
they're so in tune with - you guessed it
My Webster's New Collegiate Dic-
tionary defines fashion as a "style,
mode, vogue, fad, rage, craze . . .
generally accepted by those who regard
themselves as up-to-date and
sophisticated." Nowadays what's "up-
to-date"' is anything you laughed at as
ridiculously stupid ten years ago, and
what's "sophisticated" frankly boggles
the mind. Weren't khakis and
sunglasses boring when your Dad wore
them? Yup. Then what's happened?
Retro is what'shappened. What's
that? Well, it's kind of a concept. You
see, what's in is ... what's out. What's
new is what's old. What was cheap is
now expensive. What was considered a
ripped sweatshirt is now sophisticated
as hell. Get it?
At best, this smattering of styles is
funny for a night out. But some people
actually take it seriously, keeping not
only up-to-date, but up to the second!.
("What, Giraurd jeans? That was out
minutes ago.") And sometimes it gets
Like, for instance, this whole new
quasi-military look.'Now, hey, I like
The Clash as much as anybody, but is
that a reason to get a mohawk? All
these young people walking around in
pea-green T-shirts and camouflage
pants; they're just so tough. So mean.
Why, they dress just like they're in a
What I'd like to do is drop these brave
folks over in Iran, and then see how
tough they are. Even the . mohawk,
formerly a wartime symbol not to fuck
with me because I'm going over Pork
Chop Hill, is now worn by high-school
football players for better wind
resistance. I mean, just who's kidding
But of course, that's one of the big
problems with fashion, and one of the
best reasons to hate it. Fashion takes an
honest "look" and peddles it this way
and that in a series of diminishing
echoes until it finally means nothing at
all. The Flashdance girls on campus
certainly don't look like Jennifer Beals,
and the clothes that looked great on the
model pale on those of us who frequent
So why do we dress up? An
acquaintance of mine got a flat-top
haircut (for those of you unfamiliar, a
The Mohawk: Deadly 'do
flat-top is sort of a short-back-and-
sides, only done with a jackhammer).
He got the haircut because he says he
liked the style. The fact that people
point at himn and giggle doesn't bother
him, because, after all, he's different.
Yes indeed. Different.
What people forget is that fashion
doesn't make you different, but just the
same as the people you're (supposedly
not) rebelling against. Because fashion
is as fashion does, and what fashion
does is make us all look like a bunch of
We're all so hopelessly, transparently
searching for a clique, a fad, some sort
of group identification from which to
build our self-image. But everything we
fact is 1
Vintage clothes: The latest in today
tiques. The clothes there are hand
selected purposely for periods. For the
women going to that spring formal, the
store has gowns dating from the 1880s 1
These stores deal largely with
previously owned clothing. If this
bothers you, then the three stores might+
not be your cup of tea, but as one can +
see by the numerous vintage overcoats 1
on campus, the stigma of "used 1
. _ thc ;
° .. '
ESZ ti r
ti.. O'vy ...
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University T f
MI 48104 -
:Cat's Meow: What's new pussycat?
18 Weekend/Friday, March 30, 1984