JUST ANOTHER DAY

Trendy, social climbers and fashion victims

IT’S Friday and we take a break from the usual chit-chat on politics and fat, ugly senators and just fat congressmen.
No, we are not going to talk about senators Leila de Lima, Franklin Drilon nor Cong. Jerry Treñas and former World Mayor No. 5 Jed Mabilog. But I must say the title fits them perfectly.
We’re going to talk about what is a “sense of style” and why most wannabes are trendy, social climbers and fashion victims.
To begin, having a “sense of style” has nothing to do with having or not having money. Having class and good taste is the result of your heritage and upbringing. It means having the right pedigree, family name (preferably of Hispanic origin) and going to the right schools. Of course, your stock rises if you can trace your family origins to the Iberian Peninsula.
A person with a “sense of style” knows what is proper from clothes to music, books, films, and sports.
In Iloilo City we have a term for this, Buena Familia, and those belonging to this circle make up the upper strata of Iloilo Society.
During the 1930s till the ‘70s, the children of these Buena Familias were sent, of course, to the right schools in Manila and those who stayed in Iloilo City went to Assumption, St. Clements and San Agustin.
Eventually, St. Clements closed down and San Agustin was turned over from the Spanish Province to the Filipino Province and in the process lost most the school’s traditions, bringing down its “class” so to speak. Today, Assumption is perhaps the only “proper” school left for the descendants of the Buena Familias.
There’s an exemption; if you’re from the University of the Philippines (UP) even though you are not a descendant of the Buena Familias you are still considered an “elite”, an intellectual elite. It’s a plus factor if you’re Buena Familia and from UP.
To be “trendy” means you follow whatever is the latest fashion and is influenced by anything that is supposedly “fashionable” even if it looks ridiculous on you. Being “trendy” also means that you have no identity; you are not original as you are influenced by what is popular. In other words, you are baduy.
As an example, those nitwits who post the hashtag #everywoman and “I am that woman in the video “ on Facebook, they do so because they think it’s the “in thing” to do and they feel the need to belong to whatever is “trendy” without ever knowing that the whole issue has nothing to do with gender. Whether by design or unwittingly, doing so automatically qualifies them as “social climbers.”
And what are “social climbers” according to the dictionary: “a person who is eager to gain a higher social status or someone akin to an “attention whore.”
And we have a lot of them today; most are what we call the nouveau riche people who have recently acquired wealth, typically those perceived as ostentatious or lacking in good taste. You know these are the ones who wear leather jackets complete with scarves and knee-high boots in the middle of tropical Philippines just because it’s now fashionable in Milan and Paris.
And finally, the “fashion victim” – these are people who always wear fashionable clothes even if it makes them look silly.
“Fashion victims” are all of the above; they are “trendy” “social climbers.” These are the people that used to wear yellow (now they wear scarves) and supported Mar Roxas (now they support Leila de Lima) in the notion that by doing so they can be part of the “in crowd’, the “silent majority” (rather the “noisy minority”) and be one with the wives and sons/daughters of the oligarchs from Forbes Park and Ayala Alabang.
So there you go, take a look at yourself. Are you “trendy”, a “social climber”, a “fashion victim”, or all of the above?
My piece of unsolicited advice: “Don’t rut in the mainstream. Stand up to be counted. Be yourself and don’t do it just because it’s fashionable.”/PN

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