A Disheveled Philosophy

My look is best summed up with a phrase “disheveled and mad”, which is how someone described my appearance recently. I dress mostly in a functional way. I’m so preoccupied with existential questions and life seems so up in the air that for the most part I don’t pay too much attention to what I’m wearing. I used to take this to the extreme and wear the same ugly, baggy garments every day. Usually they were hand-me-downs; I’ve spent very little on clothing in my life. Nowadays I dress pretty well, because by this point I’ve accumulated a decent wardrobe, filled out by my relations who for the most part have a good eye. It could be improved, but to some degree it joins functionality and style pretty well. I must be the way in which I wear the clothes that contributes to my shambolic appearance.  

But generally it’s my head that makes me look a mess. I’ve never had a proper hair cut, apart from a functional and fine ‘bowl cut’ when I was a child. Since then my hair has fallen where it will, free from hair gel or similar products. It’s largely styled by a pillow or the wind. It’s a mess, and I think I overheard a passing girl the other day say “Bad hair day!” to her friend. Maybe it wasn’t in response to seeing me at half nine in the morning, red-eyed and wild, but if it was they should know that everyday is a Bad Hair Day for me.

I am also growing a fairly thick beard, though it’s almost embarrassing ginger and, as my girlfriend pointed out, could pass for pubic hair. Most importantly however, an untamed beard makes the wearer look like they’ve lost a little control of themselves and their lives, and this is what I want to look like, my philosophy these days being centred around letting go and not caring what other people think, accepting life in all weathers and celebrating the uncontrollable nature of one’s own life. I don’t know if this has ever been celebrated by any school of thought before. Bob Dylan expressed what I’m getting at when he declared, “I accept chaos.”

This is reflected in my straggly beard and weather-beaten hair. I would like to go off the rails, even for 15 minutes. Life’s too precious to be wasted in mundanity, like here at the office writing this, pretending to work.  

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