I'm not your bitch, don't hang your shit on me.

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

The clothes off my back (an L.A. story)

The fastest and easiest way to show off personal wealth is by spending it on labels and logos. Throw on an “it” bag or pair of shoes that are all the rage this season. Wear the latest in logoed sunglasses. Buy an article of clothing from one of the world’s most famous designers.

Sounds easy, right? Not in L.A.

In major metropolitan cities, a sharply-tailored suit is symbolic of power. L.A.’s fashion style comes across as more laid back. True, there are plenty of people who wear shirts and ties to work, but unlike other cities, it’s not about the shoulder pads in L.A.

That’s what makes it difficult to see where people spend their money.

While V and I are waiting at the bar for N to show up, we glance at the sartorial choices of those who are among us. Nothing special. Mostly everyone is wearing a variation of jeans, t-shirt and casual shoes. But, if you look closely, there doesn’t seem to be a double of anything.

“Those are Citizens of Humanity,” says V as he points to one pair. “Those look like Diesel,” he continues as he turns around.

“I don’t understand why people would spend so much money on one pair of jeans,” I say. “I’ll bet that everyone here spent more money on one pair of jeans than all of the clothes I’m wearing right now.”

V looks me up and down.  No response.

On top of the $200 jeans, add on a logoed t-shirt, a belt, a pair of flip-flops and you have an outfit that hits $300 before tax.

Am I the only person around here that spent less than $40 on his jeans? How about $25 on his sweater? And approximately $5 on his white t-shirt and less than $80 on his shoes?

That’s half the amount the money. And, it’s in Canadian funds, which makes it even cheaper!

But, I don’t mention this to V.

As much as I want to walk around with the tags on to show everyone they don’t need to spend so much money to dress casually, it’s probably worse to advertise how cheap you really are.


Note: These circa 2006 writings are the personal observations of a wide-eyed Canadian, and are not reflective of the residents of L.A.