Festival Fashion for the Rocker of a Certain Age 1

As I was walking out the door to go to my first rock concert decades ago, my father interrogated me about my attire (for the record, a button-down Oxford cloth shirt and a pair of Levi’s.). He asked why, if I was going to a concert, was I not wearing a jacket and tie? When I told him that no one would be dressed like that, he assured me that “the Jefferson Airplanes will all be wearing jackets and ties.” (For the record, they were not.)

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How can we move forward with so much pointed backward? 7

My wife and I were watching Avatar last weekend – James Cameron’s Dances With Wookies mashup that suggests that a significant number of people still eat magic mushrooms – and a line uttered by protagonist Jake Sully really struck me.

Sully’s all kicked back in his high-tech futon and he says, “Everything is backwards now.”

And I was thinking, I feel your pain, dude. I can actually remember a time – and you kids can scoff if you want, but I swear it really happened – when everything wasn’t backwards.

I can’t pinpoint when it all started to change, but I do remember a day when the only people who wore their ball caps backwards were catchers, umpires, and a neighbor kid Mikey, who often drooled on himself and occasionally barked like a dog.

Then, seemingly overnight, people apparently forgot how to wear a ball cap; all of a sudden, everyone in the country who wore a ball cap had it turned around backwards.

Why? What’s the point in wearing a ball cap backwards? I mean, that thing sticking out the front is there for a reason, right? If you don’t want to use it, perhaps you should wear a beanie.

OK, I realize that wearing ball caps backwards is fashion. But what kills me is that fashion too often trumps even the most basic common sense. I saw a young woman the other day, wearing her Longhorn cap backwards and using her hand (the one that didn’t have the iPhone in it) to keep the sun out of her eyes.  And I thought, “Hey, you know, you could … yeaaaaaah, never mind.”

Another backwards deal – when did it become au courant to wear sunglasses on the back of your head? I realize our shades need a place to stay when they’re indoors, but seriously – putting them on backwards? Have people not heard of pockets? Sure, it’s old-school technology, but it works.

I really don’t like the shades on the back of the head deal. Not only do I think it’s dumb, I find it horribly disconcerting when dining out to look up from my meal and see what appears to be a small bear wearing Oakleys and a Cowboys jersey glaring at me from the next table. It’s especially unnerving if I’m having salmon.

But if you want to wear your ball cap backwards, or perch your Ray-Bans on the back of your cranium, be my guest. But when it comes to parking, please knock off the backing-in stuff — you’re getting in my way.

Drive into a parking lot and you’ll find half the cars backed in to their spaces. A buddy of mine who was in Iraq said that, over there, they parked their Hummers that way so they could haul ass in a hurry if someone started shooting at them — but that’s usually not a problem at Chili’s. So, really, ma’am, you don’t need to block traffic while you “combat park” your Murano in front of the day spa. And unless the coach is putting you in next inning, turn your cap around.