The Local Knowlege

Style

Golfers are the coolest people in the world. Here's the proof

By Max Adler

Finally, evidence from the trendiest in high style confirming what we've long suspected: golfers are the coolest people in the world.

At least that's how we're interpreting Normcore, the newest fashion phenomenon that The New York Times' Alex Williams describes as "…c. 2014, in which scruffy young urbanites swear off the tired street-style clich├ęs of the last decade — skinny jeans, wallet chains, flannel shirts — in favor of a less-ironic (but still pretty ironic) embrace of bland, suburban anti-fashion attire. (See jeans, mom. Sneakers, white.)"

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Fashion movements are a lot like bar brawls in that it's usually tough to tell who started it, and pointing fingers drags out the situation to no good end. Nevertheless, the de facto icons of the movement, as dubbed by The New York Times, include Jerry Seinfeld, Steve Jobs, and President Barack Obama when he's not wearing a suit. But to that, we say, what about Tom Lehman, Mark O'Meara, Steve Stricker and just about every golfer of the last century? Khaki pants and a white polo is our answer to stonewashed jeans and a crewneck sweatshirt.

Normcore is different than a typical fashion movement in that its driving force isn't to make the former year's collars and buttons look out of style, but to embody a noble ideal. Namely, that the struggle to differentiate oneself is futile and ultimately antisocial. Utopian beauty lies within conformity. Even the more radically-clad golfers - your Rickie Fowlers, Ian Poulters and Walter Hagens - strive (or strove) for creativity only within the parameters of country club code. 

Of Normcore, Williams writes: 

"The basic idea is that young alternative types had devoted so much energy to trying to define themselves as individuals, through ever-quirkier style flourishes like handlebar mustaches or esoteric pursuits like artisanal pickling, that they had lost the joy of belonging that comes with being part of the group. Normcore was about dropping the pretense and learning to throw themselves into, without detachment, whatever subcultures or activities they stumbled into, even if they were mainstream." 

Or, as New York Magazine titled their Feb. 24th story about the trend, "Fashion for Those Who Realize They're One in 7 Billion."

While we golfers count our number by only the tens of millions, we've always held as unassailable truth that no one is bigger than the game, and dress accordingly. Whether we're behind the times, or way ahead of them, is for those who care about such things to decide. We all know golf's what matters.  

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