This piece was written for The Kent Stater, Kent State University's newspaper. It was in response to an article titled, "The cargo pants trend needed to end before it started."
You call them "dorky," "outdated" and amateurish. You think we are "confused" preteens who overvalue our plethora of pockets.
Well, you are wrong.
In a world full of slippery basketball shorts and too-tight jeans stands (or lies) the humble cargo pants. It is the answer to every pair of cold hands and “can you hold my phone?” For every purse strap digging into the flesh of your shoulder lives a brave soul prepared to contain that purse’s contents against his legs.
And yet these pants are judged not by the practicality of their build but by the color of their fabric.
I’ll tell you what, fashion industry. As I write this, I sit on a pseudo-leather couch sporting dark blue jeans with an unintentionally made tear through the left knee. My shirt is green-striped and long-sleeved. Why am I wearing these things? I wanted to. I enjoy how these clothing items feel and look on me in this weather and season.
Look, I like to look good. I look stellar in a classic tuxedo. More often, I am the epitome of adorable lumberjack when I sport a colorful flannel shirt and belted jeans.
I agree with Jessa’s article when she says fashion “is a way of expressing yourself,” but not every clothing item you put on your body needs to impress. When I put on my cargo shorts, it is not to collect swoons from groups of women.
Tomorrow, when the weather is supposed to be warmer than it is today, I may rise from my messy mattress and say to myself, “Y’know, I’m not going to a wedding. I’m going to wear that Ben Folds t-shirt and those brown cargo shorts today.”
If that makes me a dork, then I will be a proud dork.
And when you cannot find your gum in your crowded, Russia-sized handbag, I will reach down my left side and retrieve a piece for you.