Monday, April 28, 2008

stop with the t-shirts already!

[NOTE: this entry is sarcasm-laden. do not take this all too literally]

alright. t-shirts are apparantly the next big thing. case and point: are sooooo hilarious. i mean, those pop culture references are soooooooo smart and on-topic. it's a shame everyone at Urban Outfitters or [insert here hip + cool store name on a college campus near you] is also wearing one. don't cramp my individuality! after all, Pedro Lacks Political Experience, man. sooooooo cool. i mean it takes consumer generated content from online to offline (on your body!). they even have a "Threadless Loves" program (where hip up & coming bands/brands/movies) can solicit the masses (it's called "crowdsourcing") to express the brand on their terms. frankly though, as of late, the designs here were getting a bit too abstract (to me there were 3 types of threadless tees - cute, funny/smart, weird, and just funny words). so now i feel there has been an artistic revolt and the site's appeal has lost it's way (or i've gotten lame and/or everyone and their mother is wearing these shirts now, so the indie appeal has lost it's luster)

but i digress. as cool as it would be to wear your vintage sports coat + tee to the club and/or punk show, it's all gotten somewhat worn out [pun intended].

THEN brands decided it was OK to start playing in this space.

LAST YEAR there was Starbucks with which seemed OK, because well, Starbucks is (was?) semi-cool, and they got one of the the hip, up-and-coming young designers from Project Runway to create a unique design architecture for Starbucks-fans to profess their individuality:

not bad. the limited supply (they only released X # of free shirts per day for a 2 week period) drove lots of crazy demand. i don't even drink that much coffee + i remember logging on every day to try to get my very own limited edition tee.

THEN an arch-nemesis brand (not really, they are quite the small player) - who has more recently chosen to get more aggressive with this whole "internet thing" - decided they'd let consumers DRAW their own tee and enter to win. hell, along the way you can try to bid on a celebrity tee from the likes of Andre Agassi, Robert Kennedy Jr, or Martha Stewart:

while it's a neat little site and you can even see what your design (you like mine?) would look like on 1 of 4 stereotypical (but animated!) friendly models (the white guy, the waify blonde girl, the expressionless asian, or the "normal" looking brunette). it's just pretty tired. and stupid.

the straw that broke the camel's back was CNN. at CNN Shirt you can get any number of now prominent headlines printed on a tee.

the sad thing is, some of these headlines ("Gator grabs guys diving for golf balls," or "barracks aswim in feces, ickiness") do NOT ladder up the integrity/equity of the CNN brand. whatever. it makes them seem cool, right?

enough is enough. Raman to all you corporate brands trying to be cool: STOP IT. seriously.

i think i'm just going to wear my work clothes everywhere (black undershirts and rolled up sleeves are what makes me cool!). either that, or go naked.

DISCLAIMER: Raman would like everyone to know that over the course of the past ~3 years years (ending in Dec) he had been buying shirts from Threadless (for himself and gifts, but mostly for himself) at an alarming pace. he has since ceased such activity, and is seeking help through a 12-step program. in his prior college days he was the guy who would wear band tshirts around.

1 comment:

  1. Admitting you have a problem is the first step. I'm proud of you. Say hi to Lindsay Lohan for me the next you're in rehab together.


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