Fashion War: The Stupid Desert Scarf

* This weekend was rough.  I intended to get back to some sort of normalized sleep, exercise and eating schedule, but instead, each day went like this…

Wake up late.  Run.  Eat.  Fall back asleep on the couch.  Wake up.  Watch TV.  Go back to sleep.

It seems I slept 20 hours a day.  I think I may have Lyme disease.  Or narcolepsy.  Or some disease so rare, it will be named after me.

obama1* 50 things you might not know about Barack Obama.

* “Hey, Chief!  I’ve got this great idea for a front page story!”

“Yeah?  Lay it on me.”

“Nation elects first black president!”

“Nah, let’s ignore it.”

* In 2001, when George W. Bush moved into the White House, departing Clinton staffers removed all the Ws from office building keyboards.  You stay classy, Clinton administration.

* In White House pet news, Herbert Hoover let a pair of alligators roam the mansion.  Nice to know he had some entertainment while everyone in the rest of the country was starving to death.

* Speaking of animals, Rob told our audience this morning that he was unfamiliar with the “dramatic chipmunk.”  Mr. Elgas, meet Mr. Chipmunk.

* CNN tells us how not to be a bad ex. 

* Here are five natural ways to boost your sex drive.  Step #1 –  Keep a healthy distance from sex-repellent morning show producers.  That’ll help.

berman* On Executive Producer Wendy’s desk today, we found a bag containing three of the instructional sex books that caused so much of a freak-out over the last week.  Every woman within earshot staked a claim.

My director walked by and suggested I ask for one.

“Oh, I’ve seen plenty of books,” I said.

“But you don’t… do it.” she added.

“Those who can’t do, read,” I said.

How pathetic.

* Speaking of pathetic, my Lions are 0-9.  Daunte Culpepper threw ten passes and completed only five.  In fact, he only completed four more passes than he threw to the other team.  Things could not get much worse in Motown.  Is it Stanley Cup time yet?

* Personal observation: Any errand seems more important if you’re listening to the latest James Bond movie soundtrack at the time.

* Fun fact: 66 pounds of bull semen is worth about $24,000.   And you can sell it on the black market.  The bull semen black market.

* And now… a fashion commentary.

I grew up in Michigan where fashion rarely strays beyond the simple.   It’s T-shirt and blue jeans country.  Sure, you occasionally get the outbreak of the overalls-with-one-strap-undone (circa 1993) or a rash of Hypercolor shirts (1990), but generally, Michiganders are fashion-static.

Chicago, however, is a dangerous fashion sandbox.  Moments after you see something on television for the first time, you see someone on the street wearing the same item.   The deep, plunging V-neck T-shirt seemed to be doled out to Chicagoans overnight.


Please give these morons the attention they crave so they will go away.

But in recent days, we’ve been facing a fashion craze so corrosive, I had to speak out now before it filtered to more lemmings (and, heaven forbid, my dear, sweet, impressionable Michigan).  I’m talking about the “desert scarf.”

The desert scarf was previously seen adorning the head of rampant terrorist, racist and all around human plague Yasser Arafat.   Since his death four years ago, some designer thought it would be a great idea to crank them out en masse and charge $25 per unit at Urban Outfitters.

Rachel Ray fell for the fad and got her shrieking butt handed to her by wearing one in a Dunkin’ Donuts commercial.  But that did not stop the masses.  “More!” they cried.  “More desert scarves for our necks!”

I’ve seen people wearing these in 80 degree heat.  Why all the midsummer neck coverage?  Are they UV light-resistant?

Even as the weather turns colder, the flimsy material can hardly be effective against Jack Frost’s bitter assaults.   Indeed, these are desert scarves. I assume they would be used to shield one’s facial openings from a sandstorm.  But sandstorms occur approximately never times per year in Chicago.   Thus, the desert scarf’s practical purpose is moot in the big city.

That leads me to believe the scarf’s sole purpose is decorative.  If so, this is an egregious failure.  Adding a desert scarf to your outfit is only slightly more acceptable than adding a bedazzled sash of rhinestones or a necktie covered in googly eyes.  The desert scarf is a mess.  You wrap it around your neck several times in no discernible pattern.   It’s covered in weird tassels, like you grabbed the jacket off a rodeo cowboy and affixed it below your chin.  You could attain roughly the same look by snatching Pizza Hut’s tablecloths and going to town with some pinking shears.

What’s more, the official name of the desert scarf is the “keffiyeh,” a word so distinctly Middle Eastern, you’d assume it was the middle name of our president-elect.   Merely typing it has flagged this blog to the Department of Homeland Security…

Agent #1:  We’ve got a hit.   This guy in Chicago is typing in Arabic.

Agent #2:  Maybe he’s just talking about fashion.

Agent #1:  No.  That’s stupid.   He doesn’t live in the desert.

I understand that fashion fluctuates from year to year and season to season, but there is no dignity to be had in wearing a desert scarf, unless you are a member of an elite Navy SEAL team infiltrating the Kandahar region of Afghanistan in an attempt to track down Osama bin Laden.

But because I am a reasonable man, I am willing to strike a deal.  You are welcome to wear this hideous eyesore as long as you are willing to put in three to four years searching for Al Qaeda in a foreign country.   You would be able to express whatever pathetic need for attention your scarf represents, and you could serve your country at the same time.  (The same deal was cut when President Carter sent all the Shriners to Morocco.)

In the meantime, please remove your stupid desert scarves unless you are leading an archeological dig at the base of a pyramid somewhere.   Failure to do so will absolve the rest of us from using that thing to choke some sense into you.

3 responses to “Fashion War: The Stupid Desert Scarf

  1. Happy American

    I fail to see what is so outrageous about these scarves. We were wearing them already in the late 1980s on the campus in Iowa where I did my undergrad. Now they’re back. So what? Fashions come and go. Remember legwarmers? Members Only jackets? At least these scarves are more tasteful than _those_ ‘miscarriages’ of fashion.

  2. Actually, those scarfs (keffiyeh) have been worn by people, esp. students, since before the current wars. Circa late 80’s to present day, if not earlier.

  3. ChicagoFilmmaker

    No need to induce fear and paranoia about an article of clothing for crying out loud.

    It may not play well to the Dunkin Donuts fashion set, but H&M has a nice version of the scarf for only $8.00, and this trend is at least a year old already.

    First sighting is at least 1981, with Vivienne Westwood’s breakthrough ‘Pirates’ collection, which featured a borrowed mix of multi-cultural fashion elements fused together.

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