Tip No. 3: Own several pairs of dark-wash straight-leg jeans.
“Don’t get bootcut, don’t get skinny – just a nice pair of Levi’s, without any embellishments on the pockets. No embellishments anywhere. At all. Nothing. Oh my God.”
This is no doubt on the more gratuitous side of crotch shots, but, well, there you go. I picked up two pairs of Levi’s 514 slim straight jeans, my first pairs of Levi’s ever. Two pairs doesn’t mean “several,” I suppose, but I find it hard to believe I’d need more than two pairs, considering that until today I’d been getting by on one.
A little about my pants: after being a jeans wearer for pretty much all of high school and college, I axed jeans from my wardrobe entirely for a generous portion of my 20s, preferring to wear slacks and trousers. I put jeans back into the rotation a couple of years ago, in part because I’d forgotten how decent I looked in them. Jeans tend to look good on everybody, although I’d never be caught dead wearing skinny or embellished ones.
I’ve long despised shopping for new clothes, electing instead to wear thrift-store numbers and whatever people (usually family members) would give me as presents. Smaller, name-brand retailers tend to intimidate me, but I’ve been learning how to deal with them lately. I was rather proud of the way I walked into Levi’s and demanded these jeans like a total boss. Well, maybe on the politer side of bossness.
Early in Kaling’s chapter on awesome guy tips (titled “Guys Need to Do Almost Nothing to Be Great” – probably should have mentioned that earlier) she notes that iconoclastic guys who go to the beat of their own drum will find her list insufferable. After I picked up the jeans I went to Starbucks for a coffee and sat and looked around at everyone else. This was down near Robson and Burrard, which as far as shopping strips in the West End go is certainly on the trendier side. Lots of really nice scarves and jackets and hair care products and so on. Vancouver is somewhat known for its prissy richness and ridiculously huge class divide. Lots of awesome guys, judging by the surface of things.
I’m not a rich guy. Beyond that, I’ve always hated following trends, and I’ve always found the notion of putting together a name-brand wardrobe a giant waste of time. While I’d like to look and feel a bit nicer when it comes to the way I present myself, I don’t want following this list to be about collecting slogans that I can slap on and brand myself awesome by default. I’ve never spent as much money on jeans as I spent today. Sure, the money probably would have gone to something else instead – movies, junk food, some new gadget. And at least jeans are something I’ll be getting steady use out of.
But I still felt a bit funny about it, so I figured another awesome thing I might do is donate to the local food bank, which the CBC has really been pulling for today. That’s something awesome that anybody can do, regardless of gender.
Christ, heavy-handed enough? Back to all things man-makeover-related next time.