There is no point attempting to make me an arbiter of cool. To be honest, you’re better off relying on a fictional Time Lord who historically has been defined by a ludicrously recognisable appearance (except for Christopher Eccleston, who was made intentionally bland (but sexy) to provide the reboot with a little gravitas).
We are, technically, talking about a man who used to wear celery as a fashion accessory.
Not me. The Doctor. Obviously. I’m 80% certain I’ve never used a vegetable as an accessory.
Anyway, I think bow ties are tricky to pull off, but anything can be cool in the right context.
The ‘bow ties are cool’ line, actually manages to make bow ties cool as long as the Doctor is wearing them. This despite it obviously being a joke about bow ties being uncool. The trick doesn’t work with Fezes, but it doesn’t hinder the coolness of Cowboy hats.
If you don’t watch Doctor Who, this probably doesn’t make sense. But I’ll be honest with you, if you don’t watch Doctor Who, I’m not entirely sure how your life is supposed to make sense.
This is, perhaps, the biggest exagerattion I’ve ever made.
Or that was. It’s hard to tell.
If you can look good in a bow tie, you are a hero. I suspect that’s the point. But then, top hat and tails always looks great, and would need a bow tie, so maybe you’re just posh. Which isn’t cool, but looks good a lot of the time.
Cool is tricky, see.
And like I say, I am no arbiter. At least beyond the way that everyone is. Everyone makes their own decision about the world of imagery that is presented around them. I find the people that look the coolest are the people who are just short of actually looking credibly cool. There’s a line of coolness after which you become what I would probably term ‘too hipster’.
But all of these words are meaningless. Completely and utterly meaningless, and a distraction from anything important.
I’m actually worried I’m damaging mine and your days by spending this time considering what looks cool and what doesn’t.
Yet every morning, I piece together an outfit to make myself look good (and 90% of mornings, I get out of the door, and immediately regret every decision I’ve made).
Looking good is just about important to us, in that it gives us our confidence, but it shouldn’t.
Our lives and happiness should not depend on bow ties. They should depend only on love and compassion and friendship.
Sure, call me a hippy, and that’s never going to be cool, but it’s really true.
We spend most of our lives obsessing with the bow ties of the universe, and ignoring the time lords underneath.
The Doctor is cool. But mostly because he tries to make a difference. He was even fairly cool in the beige and celery outfit. Because he still gave a shit.
Bow ties don’t give a shit.
Illustration by Henry