Across the Fence
By now I’m sure you have seen or heard about the infamous $425 jeans.
For those of you who haven’t, you can buy a pair “dirty” jeans from a major department store for the staggering price of $425. The jeans are coated in some kind of fake dirt that doesn’t wash out. To be really fashion forward, customers can also buy a “dirty” denim jacket to match with the same $425 price tag.
Reports indicate the dirty clothes have been on the market for sometime, but only recently became a media hit. The online description for the jeans is: “Heavily distressed medium-blue denim jeans in a comfortable straight-leg fit embody rugged, Americana workwear that’s seen some hard-working action with a crackled, caked-on muddy coating that shows you’re not afraid to get down and dirty.”
The mocking of the company for the fake dirt on the jeans has been relentless; from celebrities to farmers, and construction workers to hard-working moms.
This company also has several other products to make the wearer appear to have worked a hard day, or just really bad at doing laundry. I found a pair of pants with paint on them, a pair with bleach stains, a pair with rips and patches, a pair made to look as if you sat in something, as well as a pair that appear to have been made from several other pairs of jeans sewn together.
While there is no shame in wearing what you’ve got, I find it hard to pay a minimum of $200 for a new pair of jeans made to look old.
My husband, Bill, has a certain pair of jeans he wears all the time. No matter where we are going or what we are doing, there those jeans are. Drives me up a wall some days. He has “good jeans” and “good shirts,” but that pair of jeans always seem to find their way on him; it’s like he and those jeans have some connection that even Tide can’t break.
I met him in town the other day and he had on “those jeans.” They are stained with grease, grime, paint, oil and whatever else he gets into. I asked him why he put “those jeans” on and he simply said, “I got them out of the closet; they’re clean.” He had me there. Yes, they were technically clean, but no matter how much I wash them, they still look “dirty.” I guess I will have to tell him he’s “cool” now.
I plan on putting some of Bill’s clothes up on eBay in the next few weeks. “Those jeans” should bring in a couple hundred bucks, and I’m thinking all of his T-shirts with burn holes from welding will bring $30 or $40, and his old work shirts from the days when he worked in a body shop will bring an easy $50, even if they do have Bill’s name on them. Surely a flannel shirt with a sleeve just about ripped off is worth a few bucks, too. With the proceeds from the online auction, I plan to buy him new clothes that don’t have stains or holes.
I have some old jeans of my own I will throw up on the site as well, just in case there are any ladies who want to have that work look, without the work. I even have a couple of old feed company jackets and vests that should bring a pretty penny.
While I joke about “new” dirty clothes, clothes don’t show if someone isn’t afraid to work – their hands do.
Look at your own hands. Do they have scars and callouses? Are a couple of knuckles bigger than other ones? Are a couple of fingers pointing the wrong direction? Is there dirt under your fingernails that just won’t loosen up, no matter how hard you scrub? Those are the real signs of someone who really isn’t afraid to get dirty.
An old proverb says, “A hand that’s dirty with honest labor is fit to shake with any neighbor.” I think we can all agree with that.
What farmers and ranchers do on a daily basis, I think, would scare the fancy pants off of the people who buy pre-dirty jeans. I bet their hands are really soft and smooth too.
To all of my hard working friends and neighbors in the Ozarks, wear your mud-caked jeans with pride, knowing you didn’t have to pay someone to show you aren’t afraid of a little hard work.