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Style Guide for the Modern Cad

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by Emerson O'Sullivan III aka FancyLad, for outsideleft.com
originally published: February, 2005
According to misinformed fashionistas worldwide, we are still in a monochromatic movement.

Fancylad, outsideleft's very own in-house self-appointed style expert answers all your nagging questions on fads, fashion, vanity, and style.

This may sound stupid, but I'm a girl who is about to break up with her boyfriend because he thinks he looks cool wearing those ratty-looking, white undershirt tank tops out in public. Am I wrong?
—Kim Collins, Miami, Florida

You must referring to what certain guys call "wifebeaters" nowadays—no doubt a reference to the fact that most of the perps that usually get arrested for domestic violence on COPS are frequently outfitted in these ribbed atrocities. Sure, these undergarments looked great on Marlon Brando in On the Waterfront, but I doubt your boyfriend looks like Marlon looked back then and he probably isn't on a waterfront either. Chances are, Marlon didn't even wear these on the street. That's because there's a reason they're called undershirts—you wear them under the shirt you're already wearing. Should you break up with your boyfriend for not knowing any better? I say no. You're his girlfriend—it's your job to teach this poor schlub how to dress himself—his mother obviously didn't. If he insists on wearing them out in public after your patient requests, then you can dump him.

What's the deal with this monochromatic look with suits that I'm still seeing all over the place? I swear if I see another blue shirt/blue tie combination, I'm going to go mad. Is it still popular?
—Dave Banks, Manhattan, New York

According to misinformed fashionistas worldwide, we are still in a monochromatic movement. This is not a movement I want to join, but if you're name is Regis or you're a member of the Mafioso, feel free to participate. It's very theatrical, very Hollywood and extremely hard to pull off. The look had it's place in 2001, but I say once it goes mainstream and people like Maury Povich and Jay Leno start copping it, it's time to move on, young man.

I'm in my early thirties and balding—fast. I've also decided on giving myself the complete shave before I start loosing any more hair. What kind of maintenance am I going to be looking at in the future?
—Adam Hanson, San Diego, California

You might not want to do anything until you thoroughly inspect the portions of your head that are still covered with hair. Fancylad would make a horrifying bald man due to the flatness of my head and the swastika-shaped birthmark I've been cursed with. But assuming your melon is of sound shape and size, you can shave it the way you shave your face with a disposable blade or an electric razor. And by the way, if you're of the pasty, white guy persuasion, be sure to wear some expensive sunscreen—expensive because the cheap stuff is usually pretty oily and there's nothing scarier that a guy with an exposed pink, shiny, bulbous head.

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