Saturday, June 23, 2007

Crazy from the heat.



Summer, in this hemisphere, is officially upon us.

This means the attire, in general, is more casual and looser and lighter. It also means that, in the raiments below the equator, there is a silliness that is acceptable, seen as an expression of joyful release from the strictures of autumn and winter.

I mean, of course, the perfectly ridiculous shorts and trouserings which burst forth in harmony with the temperature. Oh, sure, there are some which are not perfectly ridiculous...in fact some are not ridiculous at all. Linen is pretty sober and seersucker -- more on this in a post or two -- only smiles benevolently at its spectators.

But we have such lives-of-the-party as Nantucket Reds and madras and "club" pants which simply beggar public notice.

The only caveat I offer along these lines are:

1- Make sure the Nantucket Reds are the real thing. Like "real" Brooks Bros. buttondowns, these cannot be faked. Approximated, sure; but not faked and not equaled.

2- Avoid "patchwork" madras. It's a bit too...too if y'know what I mean.

The idea is not only for the pants to be cooling, they must also be cool. But in a possibly goofy, self-mocking way. The tailoring may be serious, but the finished product needn't take itself that way.

It goes without saying these sorts of trousers and shorts are really the sort of sphere where the preppy markwelt really comes into play. This is the "play hard" side emerging and as such it mustn't be imbued with undue seriousness. After all, if you are somewhere where the heat and humidity are going to have such an effect on you, then you're probably not in an air-conditioned office toiling away.

Oh, one last thing. In these cases, flat-front pants & shorts are as worthy of your attention as their FORWARD pleated brethren.

...and keep it sockless.

-J.