Everything is for sale

A good friend spoke to me recently of this amazing old man on the bus she saw. He was apparently wearing a standard pair of blue jeans – which had been darned from below the knee up to mid thigh – over and over again. I’m talking 4 inches wide all the way up. Hazel had her new digital SLR on her so asked if she could take a photo. He didn’t want her to which she thought was fair enough but wrote

“I was gutted though – would have been an ID-type shot. Bugger.”

She said the jeans looked twisted and amazing. The old guy told her that you don’t learn as much from a photo as from a conversation and then proceeded to recount how he grew up in wartimes and that he had learnt two very important things in his life – never be ashamed of carefully mended clothing – and she couldn’t remember the other one. She observed to me that

“People don’t mend clothing much anymore; they discard and buy new ones.”

The interesting thing is that even this old guy on the bus with his authentically repaired jeans is considered an aesthetic for consumption and is apparently fully aware of this – it seems that everything is for sale.