I was out the other night at Sherlock’s Den in Nakumatt Lifestyle – that eatery/drinkery cum Friday-night-pre-party-heng. As it so happened, it was a Friday night, and the youths were about. So I took the time to sip my Stoney and stare as ridiculous looking kids walked past me. I wondered if they knew how silly they looked. As I tread and trot on these increasingly metropolitan streets of Nairobi, I begin to feel like somewhere, sometime this year, I got old – fashion-wise – and nobody gave me the warning memo. I like to think that I have a fair grasp of urban fashions and trends but things are getting quite ridiculous now. There are a variety of new “things” that, for the life of me, I cannot comprehend, but for the sake of time – read, your attention span – I’ll only list 5.
Starting from the bottom up.
Stupid Fake Plastic Shoes.
Now, I have a problem with stupid shoes to begin with. Remember when shoes had a purpose and that’s how they got popular. Jordans wouldn’t have been popular if Mike wasn’t a good player. Air Maxes would never have amounted to anything if they didn’t set the standards for trainers. Same thing with any shoe that dominated the ’80s and ’90s. Even Timberlands had a purpose: the premier construction boot. But riddle me this, what does this shoe do?
My guess is that they fly. Well, they would fly, if they were actually real. Because, see, those are fake. So are the red space-sneakers up there. And so are approximately 99% of
sneakers vibrantly colorful plastic hi-top “footwear”, with undone laces/straps/buckles/buttons/braces/chains, and equally neon jeans semi-tucked into them being donned by these urchins. Like many of the things on this list, I blame Lil’ Wayne for these shoes ever catching on. Same thing goes for the following item.
Bane. Of. My. Existence. Seriously, why? And I can kinda understand if you just prefer your jeans slim, but once you sag them – with a belt no less – it begins to pain me, you, and every ocular receptacle in the vicinity.
Never mind that sagging with a belt is oxymoronic, but sagging skinny’s must be painful. Don’t you get severe fabric burn on the insides of your thighs? And let’s not even get into the pastel, neon colors these things come in. On that note…
This is not a uniform. And although you’re trying to be unique with the colors, you somehow end up wearing the same 3 colors. Please, stop it. Please.
Once upon the very same dark night, I saw small herd of these twenteenagers dancing about outside the actual establishment. Why they didn’t just walk in is beyond me, but that didn’t dawn on me until later. What I first noticed is that they were all wearing these ridiculously large old-woman sunglasses(and a few Kanye West Shutter glasses)…and it was night-time. This is up there with people who wear glasses and don’t need them; they just think it looks cool. Except this is the reversed more retarded version. It says ‘I’m making a dark room darker so that I look cool.” All puns aside, that’s not very bright, and definitely not a good look.
I kid you not, I saw a kid with braids, dreads, a baldy and an afro on the same head. His barber must be one of those guys that strongly believes in genetic splicing. He’ll mix his soup and his ice-cream, his salad and his main course and crawl down to his bedroom in his basement and think “Maybe if I mix this man and this horse, I can make a Morse or a Han.” But since science wasn’t his thing(*hint hint* Lack of logic) he decided to become a hairdresser and one day this kid walked in with an afro and said “Surprise me”
BONUS: “Arafats” & Prayer Beads
I want to meet the idiot that decided “Hey, while the rest of the world is crucifying and bastardizing Muslims and Arabs, let’s steal their cultural and religious symbols and turn them into fashion items.” I want to meet him so I can throw him off a building and see if he can fly with his winged shoes. Seriously, we aren’t in a desert and they are hardly warm, so although the scarves kinda make sense, they mostly don’t. That aside, fluorescent pink. No. OK? As for the beads, this is a recent development. I’ve seen a few folks donning them as necklaces and wallet chains.
I actually have prayer beads and I remember someone once asking me “Hey, where did you buy that cool bracelet?” I nearly slapped him.
But maybe I was wrong and missed the point. Maybe I’m no longer in tune with sensible fashion. Maybe, I’m just getting old.