You’ll Never Be This Cool: Space Between Edition

Fellow bloggers Leo Plass and Michael Braithwaite had an excellent gentleman/gentlelady call-and-response this past week regarding their most swaggering, most amazing style icons. Given the general invisibility of my brethren–the fully-embodied, the queerly gendered–I thought I’d lay name to my own style influences while also saluting some damn handsome people who don’t give a shit about your definitions of gender, which is pretty much the most high fashion thing I can imagine.


Therefore, to the few, the proud, the people you will never be as cool as so suck it up and be your own self:


JD Samson!


JD Samson, of Le Tigre fame, does not give a SHIT. She uses female pronouns, she has a mustache and she made a swimsuit calendar:



She has been romantically connected with Wynne Greenwood, the super hot frontwoman of the super brilliant Tracy + the Plastics. When JD’ss not performing with her new band, MEN, she apparently dates Sia, the woman behind the song that made you cry during the very last episode of Six Feet Under. Oh my God it’s the best moment of the last decade in television! Here:



AHHHH!!!!!!   So good! I miss that show! And so that’s who dates JD Samson. You will never be this cool. It’s fine, I just want to acknowledge that reality.


You know who’s even cooler? David Bowie!



Though I appreciate his glam-rock performativity, I feel like something more vital is captured in these two photographs, something rough and young and vulnerable.



Bowie, in unmasked glory.


Speaking of glory, I know he’s a fictional character but in terms of people none of us will ever be as cool as, let’s all meditate for a minute on Lafayette from True Blood. Lafayette is a buff queen who is not so easily reduced so I don’t even know why I said it. Lafayette is magical. He will kick your ass, he will take your name, he will wear whatever he fucking feels like. LIFE HERO!



Lafayette loves sparkles and also shotguns.



Sometimes he’s tired from being tortured by crazy vampires and just wants to wear his gym shorts so fuck off.



You know who else you’ll never be as cool as? James Dean.



Maybe I see something no one else does, but I’ve always read an androgyny into this look. There’s something tender and performative about his dude hustle, and also something deeply real.


Sometimes when I’m in the world or looking through a magazine or whatever, and I look around and nobody looks a damn thing like me, here’s what I think: DAMN RIGHT! Nobody looks like me!


A lot of us are misfits but we’ll never be as cool as James Dean. A toast to our differences, good sirs.


About Thomas Page McBee

Gentleman first, always. James Dean is my patron saint, poet is my gender. More about me here:

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