Friday, 5 April 2013

I'll Think of Something (Why is Everyone Wearing My Shirts?)

Okay, so I like to wear t-shirts with pop cultural iconography on them. That is, I like nerdy t-shirts with pictures of a storm-trooper's mask or the Tardis on them and I love my shirt with the non-ironic retro Batman logo. I enjoy wearing t-shirts that showcase the pop culture that I love and which on some level mark me out as an individual. Or they would, if everyone else would stop wearing my t-shirts.

I know that these shirts are mass produced and sold to a large audience, I haven't got them from a small independent website run by a balding fanboy, his collection of Nintendo games and a parakeet. I brought them from chain clothing stores that distributed licensed material by DC Comics, LucasFilms and so on. I get that. That does still not change the fact that I keep seeing people who have the same shirt as me with increased, and thus frightening, frequency in the past couple of months. One week I saw someone wearing my Doctor Who Tardis shirt on the Monday, my Stormtrooper mask shirt on the Tuesday, and on the Wednesday someone wore another-one-of-my-shirts-but-I-can't-remember-which-one-now-because-it-was-ages-ago-but-I'm-still-angry-about-it. Three of my t-shirts. On consecutive days. One right after the other. No gaps.

Now, I don't base my identity wholly on the t-shirt I wear or anything like that, although I do know how I dress constructs a sense of myself, for me and others. However, this is not what I'm annoyed about. I do not think that people are invading in on my identity as a pop culture nerd who loves comics, animation, films and sci-fi. Nor I am naive enough to think that I am the only one like that or part of a select few who know the ways of the nerd. Being a nerd/geek is almost mainstream now with the plethora of superhero movies and sci-fi shows being made, and geek culture is definitely no longer something you did in your mother's basement in shame (if it ever was). And this is actually what annoys me. The expansion of geek culture.

Because of the expansion of geekiness, more people are out being geeky, which is great but it means there is a dilution of the coolness of geeky things. It's not cool if everyone is doing it. So when I see someone wearing on of my t-shirts, it makes that t-shirt less cool to me simply because someone else is wearing it. No other reason. I don't get a inclusive feeling that I've found another true believer and want to share a knowing wink, just an irritation that someone else is wearing a t-shirt I own, therefore smooching off and diminishing the coolness of that shirt. Just to be clear, these haven't been cases when I have been wearing the shirt in question, and we look like we're bumped into each other on our way to a Comics Convention or the cafeteria on the Death Star. This is just when I've seen someone who had the audacity to purchase and wear a shirt that he should have known I own and therefore only I can wear in public because it is mine.

However, I know this is childish and stupid, especially because the cultural icons I love are not as niche or cult as they once were, and that I belong to a large group of people who identify as a nerd or geek. I'm just silly like that. To change the mood and distract you with more acts of silliness by me, here's a couple of photographs me in my t-shirts doing stuff.



"He gave us a signal." My face is blurry in this photo because my face molecules are vibrating at super-speed to protect my identity like Jay Garrick, the first Flash.





Here, I'm hoping that the blurred motion of my arms will distract you from my non-vibrating face. Oh, the lack of vibration. Sweet tingling vibration. (Side note: I actually haven't seen anyone wear this t-shirt aside from me, so its inclusion here is a bit of a misnomer)

Alright. That's me done. Sorry for the inconsequential rant on less than thrilling content that doesn't really matter to anyone that isn't me. Next time I'll focus on a TV show or an aspect of pop culture that intrigues me, like do Klingons have nipples or something...



About Me

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This introduction is supposed to let you know that you have found the correct Caleb. 

I am here to tell that your search is over. I am indeed the correct Caleb for any given situation. Parties, hunter-gatherings, long walks on the beach, shindigs, guest appearances, and so much more. I am an multi-purpose Caleb guaranteed to impress friends and influence your uncle.

I also write stuff online.