QUICK RECAP: Last week we referenced 3 true encounters, with 3 different individuals (names were left out to protect the guilty — cuz if you’re innocent no one cares). In each case the person in question had, at the time, adhered to a then currently-running trend, adopting the dress, style and mannerisms of a trendsetting public figure. Each claiming that their current state of being always had been, and forever more would be, who they truly were. In truth, and with the passage of time, it wasn’t to be. The point being it’s okay to follow trends as long as you see them for what they are — “just another speed bump in the road we call life.”
A CRY OF HYPOCRISY:
Hot on the heels of this article’s publication were a plethora of accusatory emails. Agitated folks crying foul and calling out yours truly as a hypocritical hypocrite… would that be like a double negative? Arguing that how dare I tell people not to latch onto and in essence live trends when I myself was guilty of the same? Accusing that my entire “Chainsaw” look and persona was either borrowed or stolen directly from or referencing characters of popular 80’s pop-culture/ cult classic cinema.
Here is an accurate, accusatory account of purportedly perpetrated, personalized plagiarisms incurred.
1. The backwards baseball cap, love of the Texas Chainsaw Massacre 1 (1974) & 2(1986) and namesake: These are attributed to the horror film obsessed underachiever Francis Gremp, a.k.a. “Chainsaw” played by Dean Cameron, from the comedy film Summer School circa 1987.
2. The mutton chops (sideburns) are a byproduct of fanboyish comic book admiration of James Howlett/Logan a.k.a. the X-men’s Wolverine (1973-present).
3. The fingerless leather “biker” gloves, sleeveless red flannel shirt (with occasional white thermal when it’s cold out) and torn jeans are all obviously homage to Judd Nelson’s portrayal of rebel punk John Bender from the teen coming-of-age comedy-drama The Breakfast Club circa 1985.
4. The chainsaw hand attachment/replacement was inspired by Bruce Campbell’s chainsaw-handed Ashley J. Williams in the black comedy horror film Evil Dead 2: Dead by Dawn.
Though these misconceived claims do have some visually defined merit they are, for the most part, inaccurate.
1. Backwards, forwards and sometimes sideways, baseball caps have been part of my wardrobe since childhood. Though I admire his work and energy, I loathe Leatherface. The moniker, pen-name, nickname, etc. “Chainsaw” was taken from a character from mine own self-created Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle parody- “The Middle-aged Mutant Lumberjack Rabbits.”
2. Yes, on occasion they have taken on the Wolverine style. However the truth is what’s an impromptu Elvis impersonator without his chops? Thank you…Thank very much!
3. The gloves: I hate my hands but loved to smoke. The sleeveless red flannel was the result of an almost deadly industrial accident — one of my sleeves got ripped off by a machine at work. So I ripped the other to match. The jeans — the knees wore out with time and use…I couldn’t afford new ones.
4. OK, there’s really no denying that replacing one’s right hand (or making it appear that way) isn’t a reference to the Evil Dead franchise. But, since childhood an affinity for chainsaws has existed so it was just and obvious ends to a means.
THE TRAGEDY OF IT ALL:
Though I despise to conclude on a downward spiraling, negative note, this particular subject kinda leans into the turn. There’s a certain affinity towards the whole “Chainsaw wear” as my Lil’ Red oft refers to it. You see the look was created spontaneously, out of necessity and it saved my life.
Seventeen years ago found me divorced, desperate, destitute, depressed and so tired of losing, tired of living… just tired. Dark days and on the darkest of these a battle against self was being lost.
One…last…desperate cry to the heavens…then I’m done. Falling to my knees my eyes happen upon a piece of newsprint under the couch, a pre-FOCUS, one-shot, full-page photo, movie review, “Chainsaw’s” unofficial debut. Looking back was a guy without a care in the world. Calm, cool, confident and a little crazy. I was that guy… I could be that guy…no… I am that guy!
Next week: Potentially life-saving effects of schizophrenia… if we feel like it.
I welcome almost all questions, comments via through the FOCUS or E-mail me at [email protected]. Hope to hear from ya, until then try and stay focused! See ya.