Flaunting It

It’s a well-known fact that I am somewhat conservative in my outlook [chorus of “No, Kim… not you!], but not really when it comes to women’s clothing.  Having come of age during the late 1960s and 1970s, I kinda like it when women show off their bodies (allowing for the Lizzo Exception, of course).

However, this one made me stop in my tracks:

Granted, she’s another one of those Brit Celeb/Actresses/Houris [some overlap]  but at least she’s apparently married to the father, so there’s that.  But I still feel a little… uncomfortable? looking at that display.

Now I’m not one of those “cover up everything because pregnancy is somehow shameful” people — sheesh, that went out with the Victorians — and I recall seeing some awfully-sexy pregnant women in Chile who were not at all shy about wearing tight little mini-dresses and high heels as they strutted their stuff around downtown Santiago.  I love the whole thing about pregnant women, too;  I think it’s glorious.

Still, I can’t help feeling that the above is a little too ostentatious or even vulgar.  Can we not say that women need to be a little more ladylike about the whole thing?

I know, I know:

“Kim, women show off their tummies in bikinis and midriff tops all the time — and you’re a serial offender when it comes to posting those pics, you dirty old bastard.  So why should it be any different when they’re pregnant?”

Because it IS different.

I welcome comments on the topic.

When Does It Become Obscene?

Surfing on a bellyboard along the waves of Teh Intarwebz, I was struck by something, and not for the first time.

Readers of this corner will of course be familiar with golf hottie Paige Spirinac, who possesses quite possibly one of the best female bodies around, as evidenced in these pics:

Now here’s the thing.  While young Paige’s derrière is by no means underrepresented, it’s not by any means over-large, e.g.

So why have huge buttocks become a thing?

Maybe the trend started with screechy pop star Jennifer Lopez:

… and was amplified [sic]  by the awful Kim Kardashian (who has never been slow to ride a trend, so to speak):

It seems, however, that this trend has no upper limit — and I speak not of all-over fatties like Lizzo, but of “Playboy models” like this one:

It’s been decades since I looked at a Playboy, but if this is the trend of their models, it will be decades more before I do it again, if ever.  Horrible.

Another example is “plus-size” model Ashley Graham, who despite having an exquisitely-beautiful face, has a backside that would fill a school bus:

Among African tribes, a large pair of buttocks is a feature of attractiveness, because it speaks not only of fertility but also of the owner thereof being well nourished (a source of pride for their husbands as providers).

But that’s in Africa.  We live in the West, and have a European standard of beauty.  And I speak not of ultra-skinnies and the like (that being more a creation of homosexual fashion designers), but of women who have proportional statistics.

Here’s actress Sasha Alexander, for instance, who has what I would consider a decent set of proportions:

Note:  no inflated breasts, nor a bulbous backside.  Another example?  Sure, why not?  Here’s the rather Mumsy-looking Laura Hamilton, who in in her forties and has two kids:

Let me say in summary that I’m not asking for women to strive for some impossible ideal of beauty:  anything but.

What I’m asking for is proportion, and not grotesqueries.

And yes, I’m familiar with the contradiction of all the above, considering that  pneumatic sexagenarian Carol Vorderman often appears on my back porch:

…as does the equally-balloony Kelly Brook:

What can I say?  I’m a sucker for a pretty face.

Model Failure

Yesterday I received another one of those email ads trying to get me to spend more money.  I was about to junk it, when something caught my eye, to wit, this:

Great Aphrodite’s bleeding eyeballs, when did models turn away from being beautiful and into heffalumps like the above?

Yeah I know, “body positivity” and all that Womynz Issues stuff, but seriously?

Here’s something for the Fashion Industry to ponder.  Somewhere between this:

… and this:

…is a happy medium — basically, a women not emaciated or boyish, and not a fucking blimp either, but a woman who looks more like a happy medium, i.e. not like this:

…but more like this: 

The latter girl, by the way, is not a model, but just a random pic of an ordinary person taken from a newspaper — with an acceptably-pretty face, and a decent-but-not-perfect body.  That, I would suggest, is more of a happy medium than what we’re having shoved in our faces today.

Fuck their “body positivity” and all that jive.  If I’m going to be persuaded to buy something, I just want to see it presented in an agreeable form.

And this from a man who actually prefers zaftig  women over skinnies.  But I have my limits, and modern advertising has stepped well over them.  Here’s the latest such offering:

I love Miriam Margolyes beyond words… but as a model?  No.

If I want to see ugly women, I’ll go to WalMart.

What’s The Fuss?

Back when I lived and worked in Chicago, I had a pair of Timberland boots like these:

I got them for several reasons:

  • they had soles that resisted the cold from the ground (Vibram?)
  • they were the best boots I could find at short notice, at any price (and yes, they were quite spendy at, I think, about $125)
  • they were available at the Timberland store at the mall, and
  • Made in Maine, U.S.A.

Just over a quarter-century later, I gave them to Goodwill because I’d put on weight, gone up a shoe size and they no longer fit.  They were still in perfect condition, despite having spent 15 years in all kinds of Chicago and New Jersey weather (not to mention the occasional trip to glacial Wisconsin and northern Michigan, see below for proof).

Last year I was getting ready for my trip up to Boomershoot, and decided that I needed another pair of Timberlands because Idaho weather and why not? they’d been great boots for me.

Bah.  Compare and contrast the list below with the bullet points above:

  • no longer made with Vibram soles
  • rubbish quality, judging from a significant number of reviews on Amazon AND on Timberland’s own website
  • no longer any Timberland stores in malls, and
  • Made in Dominican Republic (real Timberlands) OR Made in China (fakes you get through Amazon).

So much for Timberland, then.

All that came to mind when I saw this silliness in (where else?) the Daily Mail, in which they were making fun of BritPM Rishi Sunak for wearing (gasp)  a pair of Timberland boots:

Rishi Sunak is mocked over his £150 Timberland footwear as they steal the limelight during speech

One of the less-than-endearing traits of Brits is what I call “Toff Envy”, i.e. the hatred of people who are wealthy and own things that are of higher quality and (mostly) expensive.

As always, the Greatest Living Englishman has the condition nailed:  “In America,” saith Clarkson, “if you drive a nice car, the Americans will think, ‘Great car!  I need to work harder so I can afford one like that’, whereas Brits see the same thing and think, ‘I’ll soon have you out of that, you plutocrat bastard’.”  And that’s reflected in UK insurance companies, by the way, where by far the largest number of repair claims are for “keyed” doors and suchlike vandalism.   We just don’t see that thuggishness Over Here, do we?

I don’t know what the problem is with £150 Timberlands (that’s about what they cost, if not more nowadays), and more to the point, Sunak is a fucking billionaire (well his wife is, which comes to the same thing).  What did they expect him to wear?  Oxfam slippers (like the awful Emma Thompson)?

Idiots.  No wonder their governments are all socialist, regardless of party label.  And don’t get me started on their reptilian journalists…

Afterthought:  an RFI on American-made work boots. please?  Must be insulated and waterproof.  Personal testimony a must.

A Whole New Word

I see this development with something approaching satisfaction:

Women are wearing ‘safety layers’ over their outfits to deter ‘creepy’ men – with many labeling it ‘sad but necessary’.

Let me get all the stipulations out of the way, first.

Yes, I agree that womyns should be able to wear what they want.  Yes, I agree that womyns should be “body proud” to bolster their self-esteem.  Yes, I agree that (in this respect anyway) Men Are Pigs and shouldn’t respond to scantily-clad womyns with catcalls, wolf whistles and overt sexual behavior (groping, etc.), not to mention trying to sneak some “upskirt pics” (which is really unacceptable).


If womyns are going to dress like prostitutes, please understand that while men like myself can simply appreciate the female form as an object of beauty, Not All Men Are Like That and some may regard displays of flesh and the female form as sex objects.  Yes, their behavior is to be deplored.

But, in the words of some wise man, and according to sound marketing principle:

If the goods aren’t for sale, don’t put them in the window.

I hate to sound old-fashioned, but there’s this word… wait, it’ll come to me… give me a moment, what was it again?  Oh yeah:

Now I know that the word has been abused, most notably by the radical religionists (Puritans, Muslims an other assholes of that ilk), and if applied to its extreme, you get shunning, niqabs, mercy killings and so on.  All bad things.

But can we at least agree that somewhere between this:

and this:

…there lies an expansive area wherein womyns can dress in a non-provocative fashion that is still… sexy, without being overly provocative?

I often use Brit-TV hottie and uber-MILF Charlotte Hawkins as an example of stylishness and sexiness, because she is most often seen in public dressed, ummm stylishly and sexily.  This does not means she can’t go deep, so to speak:

…but only when the occasion calls for it, i.e. when display is called for, in a secure environment so to speak.

I know, all this is Not Fair To Women etc., but can we at least try to live in the real world, and not in some ur-feminist fantasy?

Modesty works, ladies, and you need to dial Teh Sexeh back a tad when you’re out in the public eye.

Old Ties

At one point in my life I probably owned well over four dozen ties (neckties) simply because I wore a suit to work each day of the work week, and occasionally over the weekends as well (weddings, formal dinners and so on).  The inside of my wardrobe looked very much like this:

Ties back then were not just about dressing well, nor even some kind of workplace uniform.  They were a mark of your individuality, a means whereby you could differentiate yourself from all the other guys dressed like you in their blue or gray pinstripe 3-piece suits.

So I read this article with a certain degree of regret:

While the trouser suit – for men and women – continues to be a staple on catwalks at international fashion weeks, it seems that the old fashioned necktie isn’t quite so in favour with those seeking out business attire.  

On Twitter this week, City worker and think tank owner, William Wright, of New Financial, shared a snap that will strike anxiety into the heart of officewear traditionalists…a very pared down tie display. 

While the neck tie was once considered so vital to employees wearing a whistle-and-flute to the office that it spawned a whole shop – Tie Rack – dedicated to it, it seems the accessory is no longer on trend. 

Ignoring the teeth-grinding and pretentious “on trend” phrase — what we used to refer to simply as “fashionable” — the fact remains that with the trend going from “business suits”  to “business casual” to “casual” to “Jeremy Clarkson” to “one degree above fucking ghetto”, there is no future for men’s ties, which makes me melancholy.  It’s just another manifestation of what was once called “prole drift” — the propensity for society to degrade its appearance and manners towards the underclass and becoming a world of boors.

The plain fact is that putting on a tie makes a man look properly dressed when the occasion demands it.  I couldn’t think of attending something like a wedding, funeral or even a smart sit-down dinner without a tie.  Here’s what I mean:

Without a tie, even a decent suit looks wrong.

So I went over to my tie rack as it stands today, and counted my ties.  Eight neckties, two cravats and a bolo (string) tie — “Texas formal” — and that’s it.

My old tailor at Lightbody’s in Johannesburg is turning in his grave.

Afterthought:  A little while ago, New Wife and I were going out to dinner somewhere, and I put on a suit for the occasion but dispensed with neckwear because it wasn’t that formal an occasion.  When I asked her how I looked, she responded acidly:  “What about your tie?”

I was able to pull the Old Fart card here by putting my hand to my throat and feigning shock at my forgetfulness, but I don’t think she was fooled.  I think she has been sent to chide and chastise me by my late mother.