There are men and there are guys. I married a guy. And I have a son who is most definitely on his way to guydom. The main difference between the two subsets of males that I can tell is this: Men will wear scarves. Guys will laugh at men who wear scarves.
The difference is subtle, to be sure. Both sets wear hats. Both wear jackets. Both watch baseball, basketball, hockey, football and in a pinch, curling. Both eat wings and burgers and fries. Most of both sets find the act of playing catch to be personally satisfying and can rationalize hours of this activity as being necessary for psychological well being.
But, pull out a scarf in the presence of a guy, and should he notice it, watch him look for the nearest female. In fact, most guys will not even pay attention to a scarf, as though it could never possibly be an article of clothing meant for them. By the way, guys do not know what an accessory is, with the exception of perhaps a wedding ring.
Men, however, have no said aversions. They have witnessed several normal males wearing scarves and are oblivious to the idea that there could ever be a problem. They wear them not so much as accessories, but only to keep warm. Their scarves usually have NFL logos on them and do not match anything else they’re wearing. Yet, some men, dressed by their wives or mothers, possess a sensible, neutral scarf that they store in the arm of their jacket for easy retrieval just before walking outside. I am the daughter of a man. My dad wore a scarf and never thought twice about it.
But I am the mom of a guy, age 14. Getting him to wear a scarf for a five-minute photo shoot was like telling him that he would be chaperoning his younger twin sisters’ next birthday party.
My problem is that I need to show males wearing our hats and scarves on the blog and website. I begged my son to pose for few minutes and show off our products.
I started with a scarf in a masculine color – dark olive. Barrett rolled his eyes.
“No one is ever going to wear this thing,” he said. “Who is actually going to buy it? Maybe moms but that’s it.”
“Real men wear scarves, Bear. I see it all the time.”
“Then there’s something wrong with those people.”
“No, they’re fine. Just wrap this around your shoulders for a picture. It’ll be quick. I promise.”
“You’re not going to put this online are you?”
“What do you think?”
“MOM! No way.”
“OK, I won’t,” I said.
“Yes you will. I just know it. You won’t write about me, though.”
“Try to not look at the camera. And look natural.”
“In this?! OK, but my payment for this humiliation is a game of catch when we’re done.”
If he were a year younger, this would have been a no-brainer. I love playing catch too. But this past summer, Bear started throwing hard. Really hard. Like, I have to catch the baseball in the glove’s webbing because it hurts a lot if it hits my hand. And, if there’s any question on whether his sinker is going to hit my glove or my shins, I’m bailing.
“No fastballs. No sinkers. No sliders,” I told him.
“Yeah, but if you want me around to continue playing catch with you, you can’t take me out.”
By the time this conversation was done, I had shot him in one scarf and two hats. I must mention that his three sisters stood in the background, laughing at his distaste over this whole ordeal.
Luckily, he laughed too. And so did I. In total, we spent about 25 minutes taking pictures of Barrett wearing things he’ll never wear if his friends were around. But, there was one exception. He liked the black chullo hat with earflaps.
His birthday is coming up in a few weeks. Maybe I’ll give him the alpaca hat.
Or the alpaca scarf.
Sirius Alpacas is a family farm in Chardon, Ohio that raises and boards alpacas for fun, therapy and profit. The farm uses its fleeces in the production of high-quality yarns and felted goods. Sirius Alpacas also imports fair-trade Andean items from Peru and Bolivia, offering the style and culture of South American goods while helping the farmers, artists and craftsmen of that region.