Zack: Jah welcomes ya to da new deat of Babylon!
Zack: It's fun to imagine some wizened goblin of a man in his little Halloween workshop developing costumes like this, but the truth is they just wash up on some abandoned stretch of New England beach next to a collapsing lighthouse. The rush of waves, the salty spray, a lone seagull cawing into the chill October air, and then a crashing wave brings in one, two, a dozen, a hundred of these. It is a hardy breed of man that scoops them up and brings them to market.
Dr. Thorpe: I think these costumes spontaneously generate from the ether, given form and substance by the combined hatred and intolerance of all mankind. Kind of like Ghostbusters 2.
Zack: I think it's going to take a lot more than the Statue of Liberty to defeat these things.
Dr. Thorpe: Part of me looks at this costume and feels a strange sort of envy. Don't you kind of wish our culture was this easy to sum up? We've talked a lot about irony and VH1 and Thundercats and all the useless shit we carry around on our backs, but don't you think our lives would be better if we just had "our thing" and that was it? Just weed, floppy hats, and dreadlocks?
Dr. Thorpe: The simplicity of the semiotics portrayed here is just so elegant. There's really no way to make an "American" costume that so plainly and effectively articulates the breadth of our culture the way this costume so accurately sums up Jamaica.
Zack: I think it's easier to summarize us if you're viewing the United States from the outside. To quote Orwell: "Imagine a big fat boot up a human ass, forever."
Dr. Thorpe: "Imagine a woman in a Looney Toons hip-hop shirt ordering a Double Whopper and a Diet Coke, forever."
Zack: That's actually pretty accurate. I think you've just managed the impossible.
Dr. Thorpe: Imagine a glassy-eyed man in a turd suit transparently plotting to rape woman at an office Halloween party, forever.
Zack: Imagine the Vice President, signing the order to bomb civilians in Iraq, in a fat suit, with a sniper rifle and a target on his chest, forever.
Dr. Thorpe: Imagine Keith Olbermann responding with a pretentious, condescending stream of hyperbole about the incident that lasts forever.
Dr. Thorpe: Oh, wait, you might not have to imagine that one.
Zack: Hey mon, chill out, feel da groove and let's play oddball.
Are you concerned that you may be a character trapped in a Tom Waits song? Be smart and learn the warning signs before it's too late. Also, it's too late. It has always been too late.
I'm haunted by a recurring vision of a skeleton flipping me off. To avoid seeing this terrifying image in bumper sticker form, I pay someone with a blank bumper to drive in front of me at all times.
Fashion SWAT... the fashion industry is obsessed with impracticality. We know that what designers create was never meant to be worn by the grimy masses, but that doesn't somehow diminish how ridiculous many of these costumes are. Make no mistake, they are costumes, and like a Halloween prize pageant we will turn our discerning gaze on the grievous fashion misfires of Paris, Milan, and New York. We're not pulling any punches, and we're definitely not interested in making any friends. We're Joan Rivers without Melissa Rivers to temper our screeching. We're the Fashion Police in jack boots. We are Fashion SWAT.