Oliver Twist Fall 2010 Ready-To-Wear
By Jeggi Elinzano
I’ve recently developed an obsession with fingerless gloves. Developing a transient obsession with a particular article of clothing is natural. However, whenever I discuss a new obsession with one of my fashion friends, they always try and attach some logical reasoning behind it:
Preceding this would probably be a discussion about my desire to replicate a ridiculous outfit from Gareth Pugh with whatever resources I have available. The example above is the-person-I’m-talking-to’s way of trying to make sense of it all.
Fingerless gloves, unfortunately, don’t make much sense.
“Friend, the fingerless glove is a symbol of rebellion. It’s the proletariat rising up to the bourgeoisie, and the accessory of those who could only manage to have one pair of gloves.
Unfortunately, the glove’s sub-par construction has eliminated its finger coverage—an inevitable result of constant foraging through waste and debris, just to find a reason to get by. As history progresses, fingerless gloves are found on the Oliver Twistian freedom fighters trying to find some explanation for the poverty they are enduring, while those who can afford a full glove stain its priceless fingers in pork and wine.
Like anything of substance that originates from the drenches of society, the fingerless glove comes to symbolize rebellion. Fast-forward to the scene-obsessed present, and pop culture subtly adopts the fingerless glove as the requisite accessory for the dirty rebel.
My personal introduction to the fingerless glove comes via the troubled romantic John Bender (from John Hughes’ essential The Breakfast Club). On the outset, he’s the stereotypical rebel—stoned and annoyed.
He doesn’t want to communicate with those around him, and his modus operandi is to cause meaningless mischief.
But one mustn’t forget that the most emotionally resonant rebellion comes from those who rebel without a cause.
Your heart falls for those that want and need to rebel but don’t know what to rebel against— it’s a struggle without direction. They’re trapped in limbo and they’ll do anything to get out of its empty grasp. It’s Marlon Brando in response to a question about what he and the Black Rebel’s Motorcycle Club are rebelling against, asking, ‘Whaddya got?’
John Bender wore fingerless gloves through the entire film. He comes from a troubled working class family and has found no other solution to his lot in life other than to cause trouble. However, even in the short period of time that the Breakfast Club kids serve in detention, it is Bender who catalyzes many of the film’s major events and makes personal sacrifices for the sake of the group.
While the others wallow behind some facade of popularity, athleticism, psychological instability, and burdened intelligence, it’s the troubled Bender who ultimately most understands the discriminating and devastating world around them.
When it comes down to it, John Bender is the most resonant pop cultural example of the fingerless glove since Oliver Twist. Like a conscious proletariat, he views his surroundings with a critical eye that only someone with his upbringing and perspective can have. Wealth, pork, wine, and a complete glove only serve to blur perception. Bender and those like him don’t have any of these and, as a result, their vision is 20/20.”
Of course, I made this all up and don’t really believe that the fingerless glove has any social value. That said, I only like these stupid things because Neil Barrett said so.