Generation-X Of Clothes

Generation-X Of Clothes
Image: OK Nation

I went into Edinburgh in the rain yesterday. Well, not so much rain, more of a dank drizzle that my Harrington absorbed like a sponge. My intention was simple: buy some holiday clothes, checkout a couple of recommended books and grab a coffee. Nothing is ever that simple, though.

Ever wondered why middle-aged men dress like twats? Either they wear clothes that speak of days gone by or they are too old and sensible for them to make any sense. The answer is simple, as I discovered yesterday: there is nowhere for middle-aged men to buy clothes, especially ones to wear on holiday.

The first thing I feel I should do is define middle-age. If it’s half way through one’s life expectancy then at 36 I suppose I can say I’m right on the button. Or is it, as most people seem to think, the latter stages say between mid-40s to being an OAP? It’s a conundrum and more relevant to my argument as you might think.

I’m 36 and whether that makes me middle-aged or not, I feel like Generation-X when it comes to clothes. Nobody caters for me; you either have to be 20 to suit the styles on offer or be prepared to buy your clothes from BHS or Matalan and end up looking like your Dad. Either that or just be a woman, they seem to have plenty to choose from.

Us mid-30 blokes have grown old before our time because we’ve been missed and forgotten by the designers and outlets. We’ve no role models to look up to and say, “hey, I want to look like that.” We’ve no style ideas of our own. It’s not our fault we end up looking to M&S or Slaters for t-shirts! It’s not my fault that I get excited at a new pair of slippers (although my Homey’s really are something very special).

I left M&S feeling dejected and hopeless, my plan to get it all done myself this year left in tatters. I’d called my wife fromthe t-shirt department of the men’s section and felt like a prat as I told her nothing looked right at all. There I was, walking around the t-shirts with my mobile to my ear as middle-aged men followed their wives around as they picked out  clothes for them that just didn’t suit. That will be me later this week. Oh joy.

Following that humiliation I decided to head to the bookshop to look up Devon’s recommended books. None of them were in but I was able to order AMERICA LIBRE and should have it in time for going away. Back home I looked out more potential books to take on holiday. In no particular order:

  • THE PLAGUE by Albert Camus
  • FLESHMARKET CLOSE by Ian Rankin
  • THE ISLAND – Victoria Hyslop
  • THE PAPERS OF TONY VEITCH by William McIlvanney
  • MAN IN THE DARK by Paul Auster

I spent my afternoon doing a bit of cleaning and tidying. I took some time to do some longhand writing and make some notes—even found myself sketching into my Moleskine at one point! Then I ordered pizza and watched a film with daughter in the evening.

A fitting end to this middle-aged bloke’s life. For info, I wore jeans, a Madness t-shirt and Harrington jacket through. What does that tell you about my clothing comfort zone?

Peace and out!

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About Colin Galbraith

Thriller author, music fan, St Mirren fan, fluff chucker, rabbit tamer, outstanding fake faller. Loves cannoli.
This entry was posted in Books, Edinburgh, Editorial Comment, Family, Film & TV, Food, Drink and Bevvy, Writing and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

7 Responses to Generation-X Of Clothes

  1. Rob says:

    An hilarious post,and trust me Colin it gets worse when you hit your 40s (sorry to be the bringer of bad news :))

    Putting middle-age fashion aside (because that’s the best thing to do with it), I must say that you have impeccable taste in literature. Camus’ ‘The Plague’ is one of my all-time favourite books. I’m sure you’ll love it (that is, assuming you haven’t read it already).
    Warmest
    Rob

  2. Binny says:

    I read The Island last year, loved it! Thoroughly reccomend it bro 🙂
    xx

  3. Colin says:

    Thanks Binny!

    Rob – Thanks for posting such ominous news 😉

    It was The Outsider that got me hooked on Camus. It remains one of my all time favourites. I recently read The Fall, which I loved, and I’ve been looking forward to The Plague for a while now. After reading your comments, I’m looking forward to it even more.

    Cheers!

  4. Stevie ward says:

    Mate, jeans, a Madness t-shirt and Harrington jacket sounds perfect to me. 😉

  5. You’re not middle-aged.

    I can’t tell you how often I take guys shopping, of all ages, thanks to my years in wardrobe. Totally different experience than shopping with a spouse.

    It’s hard to find good clothes for men — they’re either for teens or pratty “metrosexuals”, not for real guys.

    It takes a bit of digging. I’d have to walk the shops first and then go back with you and show you some possibilities. Here in NY, i’d know where to take you — and it wouldn’t be department stores such as M&S. But it’s been to long since I was in Edinburgh to give good advice.

  6. As someone who is soon to hit the big 4-0, I can totally relate. Unfortunately for me, I need three different wardrobes: one for corporate america, one for club life since I’m a DJ and need to pretend that I’m still hip, and one that portrays the real me which is somewhere in between. So, I’ve decided to just wear suits with bedazzled T-shirts underneath!

  7. Pingback: Freedom From The Mundane » The Clothing Debate Part II

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