Friday, November 30, 2007

Hoodies with Masks?

Cooler weather has spared us the sight of urban fashion devotees' boxer shorts sticking out of their low-slung jeans. But are you ready for the new trend?

Having recently read on Boing Boing about hoodies with face masks, I was surprised to see some on sale in downtown Plainfield. The local mask style resembles the homicidal film character "Jason."

So instead of seeing all too much of someone's underwear, we can now look forward to seeing none of their facial features.

This trend, which dates back to 2005 according to online sources, is expected to explode this winter. There are all sorts of face masks in the U.K. and the trend has spawned a debate over whether a person must show his or her face in public. Critics argue that someone in a burqa cannot be identified by public security cameras, so what's the hassle over zip-down face masks?

Others say the masks are nothing more than a hooligan's tool to do harm anonymously.

Personally, in my pedestrian travels around the Queen City, I would not want to encounter an individual wearing a hoodie face mask.

One wag suggested the trend could be defused in the U.K. by distributing such garments to old age pensioners for health reasons. The usage would then deflate the hype.

Others noted that people in Japan have no compunctions about donning surgical masks in public to avoid germs, so what's the difference?

The Book of Ecclesiastes may say there is nothing new under the sun, but this one caught me unawares.

--Bernice Paglia


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