My colleague Joe Killian has a post up at his personal blog (Memo to self: Add Automatic Writing to my blogroll), on how sometimes even the most outlandish fashion or look becomes, if one just wears them a few days, “your thing,” a part of one’s self, as unremarkable after a week as one’s little finger.
He’s right, of course. The problem, as I pointed out in his comments, is that sometimes, 15 or 20 years down the road, you can’t find and destroy all the photos of you with your thing, much as you want to.
I wish this weren’t true, but somewhere out there, there are 1984 photos of me in parachute pants with a bleached stripe and rat tail in the back of my hair to prove that it is.
There are photos around, as well, of Billy Ray Cyrus and his mullet — yes, he of “Achy Breaky Heart” fame for 15 incredibly annoying minutes 15 years ago. Cyrus now plays the main character’s dad in the Disney Channel series “Hannah Montana,” which I’ve seen bits of because Victoria likes it. (Yeah, that’d be the same Victoria to whom I was reading a college-level history of Tudor-era marriage conventions among European royalty one post back.) Even by the standards of Disney Channel (which, relative to their target audience, are not that bad), the show ain’t that great, but to be absolutely fair, Cyrus proves himself at least a competent comic actor in his role. “Credibility,” as The New Yorker wrote of Tom Jones after his comeback-hit cover of Prince’s “Kiss.” “It’s never too late. It’s never too late.” Nobody had to go back and find embarrassing photos of Jones, though, because his style never really changed. Cyrus, on the other hand, closed out tonight’s HM episode wearing a mullet wig and singing a song whose title, I think, was “I Wish I Had My Mullet Back.” Such is the power of those evil photos.