On the Subway 4: Style Police

In the winter months in Beijing, everyone starts to bundle up and fur, sometimes real, more often of questionable origin, becomes an inevitable sight, as lining on coats, in/around hoods, and in totally fur coats. All too often, the fur isn’t even real fur, as chronicled by Stylites.

One day on a crowded Beijing subway car, there was a short, thick man (most likely from Dongbei) in a (very fake) fur coat, the type of coat that (if real) would only be worn by pimps and professional athletes in the US. It was hard not to notice him, but it’s not exactly an uncommon sight, one I’d only warrant a peak at and nothing more. However, a young French guy standing next to me conversing with his Chinese girlfriend thought it was much more important than that.

Frog: Do you see that guy?
GF: Yes, what?
Frog (excitedly): DO. YOU. SEE. THAT. GUY?
GF (even more puzzled): yes, what is so special with him?!?
Frog: He’s wearing a fur coat.
GF (perplexed): so?
Frog (perplexed and excited): He’s a man, he is wearing a fur coat.
GF: Do you have a fever? What’s wrong with you?
Frog (indignantly): He’s a MAN! Doesn’t he know that men don’t wear fur coats? What? Is he gay?
GF (pounding her head against the pole)

Ahh, don’t you just love the French?The US may serve as the “world’s police force”, but the French want to be the globe’s fashion police. My “biglaw” dreams and the salary that goes with it may have brought me to Japan, but the lack of these sort of exchanges have led me to miss Beijing on a daily basis.

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