A Little Trip into Trendyland

04/16/2013 12:00 AM

05/20/2014 10:42 AM

One morning I tossed on a pair of vintage jeans and a timeless cardigan. I popped in heirloom earrings, tousled my loose curls and went minimalistic with my makeup.

The translated version? One day I dressed in the same jeans that I have been wearing since Clinton was president, and an ancient sweater. The earrings had been given to me by my mother, who had decided they weren’t her style. Other than the day the smiling picture above was taken, I don’t usually make the effort to wrestle with and smooth my curls; I wore no makeup.

The “vintage,” “heirloom” and “minimalist”? Those are trendy words. The reality? Old stuff that’s part of my everyday mom uniform. Not trendy, especially on a middle-aged mom who abandoned the effort to be current a couple decades ago.

On the day that I wondered if I could make my mom-gear sound au courant, I wondered what

was

trending these days. Trends change rapidly, but rarely faster than on Twitter. Maybe the Twitter Trendy are quick thinkers, master multi-taskers ... or they see something shiny and turn, like a flock of birds moving as one mass on a particular course, only to turn with unified precision and aim in another.

At the one moment I looked at the Twitter trending list, this is what it said:

#KardashianKollectionChat

#ProudToBeAFanOf

#ThreeWordsSheWantsTo Hear

Since I am the anti-trender, I was clueless about what these meant so I did some

exhaustive

research:

KardashianKollectionChat: My first thought was to switch topics. Write about fish sticks, kids playing in the mud or dust bunnies … anything except the Kardashians. But it was trending and I needed to find out why. Was I missing something important? I mean, if enough people were talking about them on Twitter wasn’t it certainly a topic that required my investigation?

No, no it didn’t. Khloe Kardashian was taking questions about her new collection of clothing (that she sells, not the stuff in her closet). Most of the questions, however, had to do with why Ms. Kardashian wasn’t noticing the posters on twitter or declarations of love for her — most went ignored. Some really deep, heady stuff; I can see why it was trending.

No, no I can’t.

I dove out of the Kardashian think tank. Maybe ProudToBeAFanOf would prove more interesting. It did. People were proclaiming their allegiances to all kinds of things: One Direction, favorite sports teams, Harry Potter — a lot of fan worthy subjects. Although mostly? Mostly there were posts from brands claiming to be fans of themselves. Stores, new bands, even a couple professional sports teams. I understand the importance of self-promotion (#TheHistoryChicks) but really? That was a bit too self-serving for me. Assisting in making a topic trend just to advertise yourself had bored me back in Kardashianland.

Moving on.

ThreeWordsSheWantsToHear: Finally! This was a fun one to read. Creative, clever, evocative of romance (except the really rude ones … parents, keep your kids off Twitter as long as humanly possible). “I want you.” “I love you.” “I’m The Doctor.” This topic gave me hope that trends aren’t always self-promotional or ridiculous.

An hour later I looked again. All but one of the topics had had been replaced by others that weren’t listed 60 minutes before.

I walked away from my computer when I heard the school bus roll up. One, two then three of my forever number one trending topics flew through the front door with tales of their school days. Listening to them, hugging them, being with them led me to one conclusion:

What’s trending has no impact on me. What’s standing in front me does.

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