The Spear heard them before he saw them.
As he walked through the city the other night, The Spear - trying to clear his head after a long day - was beset by a series of wild cries: “Toga, toga, toga!”
‘Oh no’, The Spear thought after registering the most basic of chants. He knew what it meant, but it was already too late.
Around the corner streamed hundreds of youths, all clad in white linen and recently purchased $3 Big W bed-sheets. A Toga Party was afoot.
An ancient frieze of the first ever 'toga party'
As the pissed-up pack of presently pubescent pricks passed The Spear, with their mandatory mock motions for high-fives and general vulgarity, The Spear thought it odd that a bunch of 18 year old Australians, in the pursuit of popularity, would take to dressing like they did two and a half thousand years ago on the other side of the world.
Talk about a timeless look.
The Spear thinks back to the fashion of his teenage years: backwards caps, shorts half-way down your arse, socks up and hoodie jumpers. If it sounds like a wannabe American skater boy from the 1990s, that’s because that’s exactly what the fashion was.
As the years passed, the fashions changed. The caps got truckier, the shirts got pinker, the shorts got shorter and the socks became non-existent. Oh, and the hair got Biebered.
Most of those fashions are now on their way out.
The thing about fashions are that they are always changing, and always inevitably flowing from the ‘cool’ to the followers to the late adopters (The Spear always found himself in this last category, only making the change to the latest fashion just as it was to be rendered ‘uncool’. Or was it the adopting of the fashion by him and those like him which rendered it so?). Like trends in baby names, what were once hallmarks of distinction and class, due to their mass adoption and passing to passé, now are no more.
But you can’t see it at the time. We have one-way retrospective vision, always looking at the past but never at the future. We judge the trends of the past as ‘out of fashion’, without really considering the future datedness of what is popular today, or even how future fashions presently worn would look out of place and thus subject to mockery.
To be honest, The Spear doesn’t give the fashion of today a chance of being the subject of a party in the year 4500. What long-term impact can modern fashion, with its vast number of competing styles and products and its fleeting seasonal state, really make on our culture?