There are a lot of trends that seem cool in the right context. Acid wash jeans. Rachel Aniston’s hair cut. Cocaine. As time passes, we look back on these moments and ask, “What were we thinking?”
But there are a number of fads happening right now that should invite the question, “What are we thinking?” These are moments that we know from experience we will look back on and shudder, and yet, we can’t seem to stop ourselves. Here’s a look at the five most instantly regrettable trends of right now.
5. Leggings as pants
I think we can all agree that whoever invented both the concept and the word “jeggings” should be punched in the face every time those pants are worn or the word is used. But lately, women are taking the concept of skin-tight pants a step further – by not wearing pants at all. For the woman who feels that jeggings just leave too much to the imagination, see-through spandex leggings insure that one doesn’t need an imagination at all to know that this woman is making some pretty bad life choices.
4. Pretending Sarah Palin is relevant
The cycle is always the same. An event happens. Sarah Palin makes a ridiculously ill-informed statement about that event. Everyone jumps on that statement as proof that Palin is ridiculously ill-informed. Repeat. The fact that Sarah Palin doesn’t know what she’s talking about should not be news. But it is. Every damn time. She’s basically the goo that runs under New York in Ghostbusters II. She feeds off of our attention and negative feelings. So let’s all just drown her out with some Jackie Wilson tunes and end this cycle for good.
3. Twi-Hard Moms
Of course teens love Twilight. Teens love terrible things. It’s what they do. When I was in high school, I thought Titanic was the most romantic movie EVER. There could simply never be a more fulfilling or healthy way for a man to prove his love than to freeze to death so you could float comfortably on a door.
Granted, teens today have raised the bar. It’s no longer enough for a man to die for you. These days, true love means a man barely suppressing his urge to kill you. But again, whatever. Teens don’t know better.
But you know who should know better? Their moms. Middle-aged women should know a lot better. They’ve had actual life experience and relationships and they should know that violent predators who drink blood or turn into wolves would make terrible romantic partners. The fact that tween novels about vampires have a devoted audience of actual adults adds a creepy layer of obsession and pedophilia to these books about obsession and pedophilia.
With the emergence of every new technology, the amount of time before that technology is used for porn is cut in half. It took 300 years before someone used the printing press to distribute the first English language erotic novel. On the contrary, when cell phones came out with MMS capabilities, it took fifteen year-old girls about 90 seconds to realize they could send pictures of their boobs to their boyfriends. And it took those boyfriends a mere 45 seconds to realize they could send those pictures to everyone in their contact lists.
But this instinct isn’t limited to teenage girls. The desire to photograph one’s private parts and send them on seems to affect grown men in the public eye as well. Athletes, mayors and district attorneys have all been brought down by failing to realize that sending someone photo of your penis is as good as sending it to Perez Hilton himself.
1. Movies based on eighties toys
Hollywood has long been obsessed with making movies from properties that already have a following – from books to video games to urban legends. The newest and most regrettable trend, however, is the optioning of straight-up objects. In an attempted appeal to the nostalgia of twenty and thirty-somethings, Hollywood is taking games and toys from the eighties and turning them into movies that no one has ever wanted to see. I didn’t play Battleship because it was a compelling game with a well-thought out story. I played it because my grandparents lived six hours away and it was an easy game to bring in the car. And I doubt my parents listened to my sister and I drone on (“B9”…”Miss”…”D14”…”Miss”) and thought to themselves, “I would pay money to see this.”
Other recently optioned pieces of my childhood are the Ouija Board, Candy Land and Etch-a-Sketch. Ridley Scott has signed on to direct Monopoly, which he says, “will be about greed.” A Donald Trump-like character will battle other real estate titans until, about four hours in, everyone else gets bored and declares him the winner.