CHICAGO — Local punk and nonconformist Don Michaelson is reportedly strutting around town showing off an alternative vest that is made up entirely of sleeves, puzzled sources confirmed.
“I used to be a part of the local punk scene, but I left because the scene was filled with sheep just going with the flow,” explained Michaelson. “It was awful: people were listening to the same music, wearing similar clothes, and generally enjoying themselves in a way that insulted me personally. Sure, I also love all of the same things that they did, but I had to take a stand against those posers on principle. First I came up with the reverse Mohawk by shaving a single stripe down my head, but no one got it. They just assumed I accidentally set the clippers to the wrong setting. After that, I knew I had to push the boundaries of my art even further. So I created the anti-vest. I didn’t do it for attention, but I was really hoping more people would ask me about it.”
However, Michaelson’s girlfriend Kathryn Cooperman feels differently about his creation.
“At least these were slightly better than his cutoff shorts that consisted only of the portion of the jeans below the knee,” said Cooperman. “Going out in public with him is so difficult now. Whenever someone makes a passing comment about those damn sleeves, he spends forty minutes explaining to them how brilliant he thinks they are. Not only that, but Chicago gets really cold in the winter. Last January, he refused to wear any outerwear other than the sleeves and there were at least two occasions where his nipples started bleeding. I was seriously worried he would end up with hypothermia.”
Denim historian Dr. Levi Goodman weighed in on the significance of the anti-vest and what it could potentially represent.
“This garment has raised many questions that still remain unanswered within my field,” said Goodman. “If Michaelson has created a garment that rebels against the alternative fashion of an already nonconformist subculture, does that technically make the anti-vest conformist? If you stack two nonconformist fashion choices on top of each other, do they cancel each other out? Does any of that even make sense? I’ve spent days reviewing the literature and I still don’t know what it means.”
At press time, Michaelson had plans to ditch the sleeves and “become the vest” by gluing patches directly to his skin.