Sunday, February 13, 2005

why the punks are cool...

okay, so obviously i forgot my favorite brit slang word in the other day's list, and that is oi: cockney for "hey", which will tie me in beautifully with today's subject (and if you make the connection between the two, you're cool.)

okay, so i was introduced to punks and punk music when i was 11. the thing you have to understand about me, when i was 11, was that my parents still dressed me. yes, i am for real. i would wear k-mart jeans, work boots, and velour polo shirts (velour is like a cross between velvet and terry-cloth towel material). i had huge, old, horn-rimmed glasses. i looked like the main character from revenge of the nerds.

despite that, the punks i met took me right in. it did not matter what i was wearing, they could tell i was cool. now, it should be pointed out that at the time, all the punks had started out just like me, nerds, picked on, losers. so it wasn't such a far stretch, but these were the first guys who accepted me the way i was. i was walking around a street fair in kent once, by myself, and immediately started up a conversation with another kid dressed in an old t-shirt and all-stars, with an unglued hawk. he could tell i was punk, even though i looked more preppy than anything. we hung together that entire day.

also, these bastards would give you the shirt off their back. they would fight like wet cats for your beliefs, or mine, as long as you were a friend. one guy tried to get one of our friends to drink at a party. the friend had an alcoholic dad, and never wanted to drink. two of our bigger friends took the guy out back and informed him if he didn't want to be picking up his teeth up off the floor, he would discontinue pressuring our friend to drink.

i read a story (and thank god for people like the author of this little blurb!) in a church magazine about a middle-aged woman and her elderly mother who had gone to the mall to pick up some things. about half way through the shopping, the mother was tired, and needed to sit down. the nearest bench was occupied by a group of mohawked, made-up, and pierced punks in holey jeans and offensive t-shirts. the woman was a little scared, but her mother needed to sit, and so she approached the bench. to her pleasant surprise, one of the young men stood, and asked her, "ma'am, do you need to sit?" she nodded, and the youth convinced the rest of his friends to move to a bench further down the mall. the moral of this story was, you can't judge a book by its cover. no fucking duh, huh?

there was always a strong sense of community and family among my punk friends growing up. and it didn't seem to matter where i moved, and it wasn't even the same group of friends always, but we were close, and had each other's back.

so when i say that any blue-mohawked kid with a ton of piercings would've gotten the door for me (see the joys of being a stay-home dad), i'm not ripping on the punk kid, or calling him stupid, i'm saying the people that get looked down at, and disregarded, and ignored, or feared, are usually the coolest people in the world. it's all you so-called "normal" people out there who need to readjust how you live your lives.

and hey, i may have been the sweater guy from salt lake city punk, though i never kicked out any police-car windows, but that's just the fucking point! it's about attitude, and not necessarily about a "fuck the world" attitude so much as a "hey, i don't care what you fucking look like, as long as your values are like mine, and your willing to fight for what you believe in" attitude.

well, there it is. i guess my literary abilities have failed me a little on this one, as i'm not really sure i captured what i have always felt in a way that makes sense. i guess one of my friends captured best in the following sentence: "i would rather ask a punk for directions than a cop." nothing against cops, just that there is an immediate bond there.

darth sardonic


Blogger darth sardonic said...

whoops, the name of the previous blog that i referenced was "the joys of stay-home dadhood" sorry for the mix-up.


8:50 PM  

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