Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Hair bandwagons

During recent travels in Scotland, it was early September, school just back in session. I was out for a walk one day at a park near a school, and noticed a group of lads all wearing a similar haircut. The sides were buzz cut, but on top it was left long. Here's a picture of a Scot on a train -- to give you an idea.

At first, I thought maybe it was a small enough town that the kids all went to the same barbershop. Then I began to notice it on older guys, too.

I was musing about this trend, how something like a hairstyle can catch on, and everyone goes along with it. How I hadn't noticed it back in Seattle, and maybe it would begin to be popular there before too long? Even before getting on the plane to Seattle, I was eyeballing hairstyles, and noting that people headed in my direction were mostly wearing the same shaggier style with which I was familiar.

Back home this week, my son asked me to cut his hair.

"Do you want that kind of cut where it's really short on the sides and long on top?" I joked as we were setting up.

"You mean the Macklemore cut?" he said.

"Macklemore cut?!" I couldn't believe it actually had a name.

"Yeah, that rapper from Seattle, Macklemore. He wore his hair like that and it became a fad."

Talk about your ironies. I'd been thinking it was foreign, and it had come from my home town in a way, all along.

"Most people don't know this," my son went on, "but it's actually similar in style to what the 'Hitler Youth' used to wear."

He added that Macklemore had abandoned the style over a year ago.

While I doubt most guys with that haircut are consciously making a "racist" statement with it, this phenomenon of going with the flow is symptomatic of our times, the tendency to hop on bandwagons without thinking through the implications.