Sunday, March 27, 2011

Bikeless Chronicles, part 4: Holy Land Accessories

It's pretty ridiculous when religious items make it into mainstream fashion.

Remember that rosary-as-necklace trend? That just bewildered me.

One of the guys at my church showed up one morning wearing a keffiyeh. As we're a well-educated, well-cultured bunch of people surrounded by hipsters, this guy got several comments and questions as to what statement--political, fashion, or otherwise--he was trying to make. He smiled with confused innocence at the unexpected barrage and explained that his keffiyeh was a gift from a friend, and he only wore it that morning because it was chilly.

A couple weeks later, I read on Jezebel that H&M is selling tallisot (Jewish prayer shawls; tallis is the singular). I got really excited and concocted a scheme to buy one as a gift for my keffiyeh-clad friend at church to complete his Holy Land Accessories Collection!

At the first chance I got, just a couple days ago, I eagerly went to H&M specifically for the trendy tallis. I really should have read the comments on that Jezebel item. Had I read the comments, I would have learned that it's not a tallis but a poncho. I really can't stand ponchos. Notice the disappointment on my face in the above photo. Stupid poncho.

Another commenter posted that one particular rabbinical student is turning the poncho into a tallis katan. The tallis katan is usually seen as a thin undershirt of poncho construction, with tassels on each corner to remind the wearer of God's commandments.

Anyway, for $35, this H&M tallis-like poncho was a bit too pricey for a not-quite-right gag gift.

Hm.... I wonder if I could knit myself a mantilla, wear it as a hipster-ish neck scarf, and start a trend.

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