Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: O.G.

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  • Craig Ranapia,

    I missed the point too. Was it "Hoodies are bad because some bad people wear hoodies?"

    No, just that's its rather naive to think clothing exists utterly divorced from a cultural and sociological context, and I really do think the market for 'street' fashion is pretty sophisticated and self-aware about what that context is. I wouldn't expect anyone at the Otara Markets to be overly friendly -- or quick on the semoitic analysis -- if I was cruising the Otara Markets in a white pride hoodie. Or ostentatiously made a point of going to a PI church service on a Sunday morning in my uber-scruffy gardening clothes.

    Which is, I guess, a long winded way of saying Ron Mark is a bit of a tosser. (And one could ask whether Ron had a style crisis when sharing a caucus room with these unofficial spokesmodels for Dirty Dog shades.) But he does have a small point.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12031 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    And I've got to admit my 'This Fag Bashes Back' and 'Dykes for Bush/Cheney '04' t-shirts don't get taken out much any more. The former is a little too "in ya face" for most occasions, and the latter just proves nothing dates faster than political humour, and when you've got to spend five minutes explaining a joke it just ain't funny.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12031 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    Hoodies obscure the face and there aren't many other garments that share that purpose.

    What about glasses and hats? Then there's beards (I've always been suspicious of them!) mustaches, long hair and makeup. All sus.

    What the hoodie does add is the total disguise, you can't even see the hair, even when it's long, or the ears. The angle of view is really narrow, no other garment obscures the head so totally. It really is a perfect choice for someone up to no good.

    A small gang of hoodie teens just walked past my house when I was getting my mail a minute ago. One of them jokingly asked where my car was. I did the experiment of trying to make a mental record of what they looked like. All I could say with any certainty was that there were 5 of them. The car joke suggests the entire look of gangsta menace was quite deliberate, that it wasn't enough that I'd seen the group, but I needed to also pay attention to the potential threat they carried. Perhaps I just didn't look frightened enough. Not that I think they'll do anything, a real crook would not draw attention to themselves like that.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8584 posts Report Reply

  • Shep Cheyenne,

    Hoodies being banned in Malls is unsettling for two reasons.

    The branding of kids as little toe rags. It's pointless too as a cap & a nod of the head at the right time, achieve the same end. The guys who do this are pro and will clean the shop out of what they want. One shoplift trick is a hole in the jacket pocket with an elastic/wetsuit belt around the midrift and with seemingly hands in pocket snatch an item unseen, place it in the belt and walk out - so jackets should be banned?

    The place Malls have as an area of importance in our society and that this space is private and able to exclude people from entering, or modifying dress & behaviour is a bit too powerful for my liking.

    Since Oct 2007 • 927 posts Report Reply

  • Shep Cheyenne,

    Should we ignore Grey Powers influence over youth culture?

    http://www.costumehub.com/UpcomingHolidays-MardiGras-Adult_Red_Pimp_-costumes/XX99160IW

    Walking Stick, sure GDad - it's your Pimp Stick dog.

    Since Oct 2007 • 927 posts Report Reply

  • dubmugga,

    for all you non street types

    hoodies on their own = safe

    hoodies plus new era baseball cap = watch your back

    hoodies plus new era baseball cap and one pant leg rolled up = eyes down and cross the road

    :)

    the back of your mind • Since Nov 2006 • 257 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    Walking Stick, sure GDad - it's your Pimp Stick dog.

    Add in a "hilarious" Pimp Pomp wig (kinda like Little Richard in a hurricane) for $12.99 and you be bangin'!

    Still, how can you not love a site where entering "nun" in the search box turned up these puppies. Certainly gives a whole new spin to 'How Do You Solve A Problem Like Maria?' (Hack her into little bitty bits, apparently.)

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12031 posts Report Reply

  • Danielle,

    Bling however... that shit's gotta be banned.

    Square, daddio. :)

    (Misogyny = not good. But awesome production/bass/flow/hooks = really good. With hip-hop my brain has some serious cognitive dissonance.)

    Charo World. Cuchi-cuchi!… • Since Nov 2006 • 3661 posts Report Reply

  • Sofie Bribiesca,

    So is it function or fashion, folks?
    Function I can and do live with - thanks god for the hoodie on a cold/wet/snowy day. Fashion, style, personal statement - I don't think so.

    So hang on,its ok if you think its function?How will you know?

    Hoodies obscure the face and there aren't many other garments that share that purpose. So I'm thinking that if you want to hide the face, you don't want to be seen. A perfect fit for teenage angst, then

    They also obscure your fat as many girls find comfortable and shades can obscure the face just as effectively. I wear mine every day to cut the glare and often am told people can't see me, I explain that I like that I can still see because I wear them

    .
    As for the rest of you, if hoodie up is your costume, then you're either emulating something that's never going to be part of your culture or you're up to something you shouldn't be.

    Or it says "leave me alone".Nothing wrong with that.

    Hoodies being banned in Malls is unsettling for two reasons.

    Look Malls sell the bloody things! Hellensteins had hoodies with a brick wall image and guys doing graffiti all over them.Happy to sell.

    here and there. • Since Nov 2007 • 6261 posts Report Reply

  • WH,

    This weekend: a young friend was sexually assaulted by four men as she made her way home after work. The men fled when a nearby security guard raised the alarm. On Friday, I watched three young guys harass two young girls as they walked down the street - they didn't seem to appreciate my lame attempt at intervention a great deal.

    In the past, I've had three young guys try to rob me at knifepoint, had another young man steal my wallet and phone from my car (I called the phone to ask for the SIM card back - he answered). This is to say nothing of the multiple burglaries and vehicle breakins around my family home growing up (we got a dog (I loved that dog (sniff)) - our neighbours soon followed suit). I got rid of my blue bandana after being threatened in a mall by a young person sporting a red bandana... That isn't the end of the list but I'd reckon I'd be round about average.

    I wear my hoodie when it is cold and agree that we should not unfairly demonise young people. I also feel a lot of sympathy for the victims of crime.

    Since Nov 2006 • 595 posts Report Reply

  • Sofie Bribiesca,

    But yes but na but. Do agree that shep is right. The Mall is very unsettling.

    here and there. • Since Nov 2007 • 6261 posts Report Reply

  • Andrew Paul Wood,

    The place Malls have as an area of importance in our society and that this space is private and able to exclude people from entering, or modifying dress & behaviour is a bit too powerful for my liking.

    Does that extend to airports as well? Surley it's parrt of the social contract not to deliberately set out to look threatening if you are going to fully participate in public life. And why on earth would an innocent person - presumably not a Musim woman in this instance - disguise or cover their face? If you want to go to the mall, you should be prepared to go with the flow.

    Christchurch • Since Jan 2007 • 175 posts Report Reply

  • Sofie Bribiesca,

    ,

    Surley it's parrt of the social contract not to deliberately set out to look threatening if you are going to fully participate in public life.

    And hopefully you aren't ugly either and if you look like a Muslim, well thats just tough,you could have a bomb, so at what point do you finish the list.?
    Professional thieves are rampant in the Malls and often butter wouldn't melt in their mouth.Stereotyping is alienating people that have as much right as anyone to participate in society.Of the professional thieves I spotted in my job, white collar comes to mind but I wouldn't stereotype because it changes all the time.

    here and there. • Since Nov 2007 • 6261 posts Report Reply

  • Andrew Paul Wood,

    Sofie, you are being deliberately obtuse. Which part of "__deliberately__ set out to look threatening" do you not understand? Nor is it just about theives, it's about intimidation as well. And stereotypes have a function - they allow complex societies to continue to function.

    Christchurch • Since Jan 2007 • 175 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart,

    Which part of "deliberately set out to look threatening" do you not understand?

    Andrew, how do you tell from the outside what someone's intention is?

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4369 posts Report Reply

  • Andrew Paul Wood,

    I think that if they have their hood up and sunglasses on inside, it's a fair indicator. It's not the sort of thing you do because it's flattering.

    Christchurch • Since Jan 2007 • 175 posts Report Reply

  • Sofie Bribiesca,

    Sofie, you are being deliberately obtuse. Which part of "deliberately set out to look threatening" do you not understand?

    Well I suppose I could find a person aiming a weapon rather threatening but I am not scared of a hoodie.

    here and there. • Since Nov 2007 • 6261 posts Report Reply

  • Andrew Paul Wood,

    And my retort was aimed at the silly analogy drawn with the "ugly" (which is just baiting me) and people who look Muslim - because there is a difference between being an ignorant biggot and feeling intimidated by someone deliberately projecting an aura of menace through their attire.

    Christchurch • Since Jan 2007 • 175 posts Report Reply

  • Andrew Paul Wood,

    So if I and a bunch of other people dressed the same, with our faces partially hidden so you couldn't identify us, started glaring at you territorially, you wouldn't feel intimidated? I'd call it harrasment.

    Christchurch • Since Jan 2007 • 175 posts Report Reply

  • Sofie Bribiesca,

    Sorry Andrew, I'd call it paranoia.However I do find lack of self confidence can cause some to feel intimidated.

    here and there. • Since Nov 2007 • 6261 posts Report Reply

  • Rex Widerstrom,

    Ron Mark later expanded on his "clothes literally maketh the man" theme, calling for a ban on pantomimes, a cut in military funding, and restrictions on strippers.

    "Obviously, any male who puts on a frock to play the Dame is going to immediately become a raving drag queen," said Mr Mark. "While I have no wish to see our nation's young transformed into gun toting gangstas (make sure you print that with the 'a' on the end to show I'm hip to the groove, he added) I think turning them gay against their will is equally repre... reepra... bad."

    Hestitating to ask, nonetheless we ventured onto the theme of strippers.

    "Well some of them wear these police uniforms... or at least so I'm told," Mr Mark said, stuffing what looked like a pair of panties back into his coat pocket. "Clearly we can't allow this because really, who wants strippers to have the power of arrest?".

    Asked how this relates to military funding, Mr Mark pointed out that upon induction into the services, everyone is issued a uniform.

    "See, no need for all this expensive training. Once they've slipped on the camo gear, bingo - instant highly trained soldier. Worked for me," he added, "though for some reason people keep saying I go round shooting myself in the foot".

    Perth, Western Australia • Since Nov 2006 • 157 posts Report Reply

  • Andrew Paul Wood,

    Tell it to the elderly and young kids who also have as much right to go shopping in malls.

    Christchurch • Since Jan 2007 • 175 posts Report Reply

  • Sofie Bribiesca,

    Tell it to the elderly and young kids who also have as much right to go shopping in malls.

    Yes they do. Mind you don't get me started on the zimmerframes. Now thats a lethal weapon.;-)

    here and there. • Since Nov 2007 • 6261 posts Report Reply

  • Mikaere Curtis,

    Which part of "deliberately set out to look threatening" do you not understand?

    Andrew, would you extend this to facial moko ?

    The problem with prejudging someone on the basis of appearance is that you aren't judging the factor that actually has consequences - their behaviour.

    So if I and a bunch of other people dressed the same, with our faces partially hidden so you couldn't identify us, started glaring at you territorially, you wouldn't feel intimidated? I'd call it harrasment.

    Isn't the territorial staring (i.e. bahaviour) that is the real problem ?

    Tamaki Makaurau • Since Nov 2006 • 455 posts Report Reply

  • Andrew Paul Wood,

    Sofie: LOL nice one.
    Mikaere: no, of course not - a moko has an appropriate cultural context well known to most New Zealanders, and it's hardly something one can display or not at will. However, for the purposes of this argument, dress (a deliberate decision, particularly how it is arrayed) is a conscious semiotic gesture that intimately associated with the behaviour, enhancing it.

    Christchurch • Since Jan 2007 • 175 posts Report Reply

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