i was nice until it was time to not be nice

This is inspired by Angie, whose recent post about an Urban Outfitters email had me going “Yessssssss.” It also made me recall this one time, back in 2009, when an Urban Outfitters email caused me to write a long, ranty letter. That letter was originally posted on my old private LiveJournal blog, but I dug it up and reposted it over here to share. I hope you enjoy!


Hello, Urban Outfitters.

Now, before I begin, let me just get it out into the open: I like you just fine, especially if you’re on sale. I have bought many a fine discounted top and/or sweater from you. I have even gone so far as to consider purchasing your underwear (but ultimately decided they are more suited for a model addicted to heroin). What I am saying is that, you and me, we are cool. We don’t have to talk all the time. I come back after a few months, maybe a year, and there you are. We just get back into it like old times. We’re cool. dig?

But then you sent me an email, and I opened it. And, UO: we have got to talk.

You’ve always pushed the envelope with questionable fashion decisions. But look at this. Look at yourself. Crawl up off the crusty bathroom floor, open your bloodshot eyes, and take a good long gaze in the mirror. What happened? What have you become?

Let’s take a walk-through, shall we? Starting from the top.

  1. Oh, for shame. Ripping off the Fonz’s white t-shirt and leather vest is bad enough, but pairing them with Winona Ryder’s baggy cutoff jean shorts from 1994? Next thing I know you’re gonna be tossing a flannel shirt and some combat boots in there for good measure. Let’s just keep the greaser and grunge looks in their separate, respective pasts, mmkay?
  2. You know, this actually makes me kind of glad inside. Because, UO, I am heartened to see that you have not forgotten the needs of aspiring ballerinas. In these tough economic times, turning your great aunt’s Laura Ashley floral curtains into recital dresses is not only crafty, it’s resourceful! Good job.
  3. Yeah, no. Wrong. No. We already went through a whole decade of high-waisted, acid-wash-clad ass, and I just don’t understand why you would want to sear my retinas anew with this horrific spectacle. Outside of occasional viewings of Road House, I had actually nearly forgotten! I thought we were over this; I thought it was all done! DON’T YOU UNDERSTAND?? I HAD ALMOST FORGOTTEN AND NOW THE HURT AND BETRAYAL IS TOO MUCH TO BEAR, OK, UO? Just leave me alone please, I just, I need a minute…
  4. OK. Now listen real good. Take notes, UO: the right time to take a maternity shirt and drape it over green cargo pants when you’re not even pregnant is never.
  5. I think my mother had this shirt in 1982. She was industrious enough to button it all the way, though, instead of just getting tired and giving up all hope right in the middle. She also refrained from wearing it with what appears to be cropped leggings with pockets. So, looks like the score here is mom 1, UO 0. Considering the fact that my mom often rocks the “elastic sweatpants with a used kleenex stuffed in the waistband” look, that is saying A LOT. Think about that, UO. Give that one some thought.
  6. Here’s another thought: putting a sheer white shirt over what looks like a denim bathing suit from the 1960s does not constitute an outfit.
  7. Nice ensemble of leather and decorative chains. Yet I can’t help but wonder, where is the lace fingerless glove? Did you just forget to include it? Or did that Madonna impersonator demand it back before you could really complete the look?
  8. You know, it’s fantastic to see your creativity really came through on that final project for Intro to Bondage Couture class. Still, I’m not convinced that electrical tape over corkboard wedge is sensible for everyday use.
  9. All right, I can see why some air circulation might be needed when wearing your boyfriend’s chunky old velour sweatshirt that’s been crumpled in a ball at the back of his closet for fifteen years, but… cutting holes in the shoulders? Really? If you’re looking for bare shoulders, just PUT ON A TANK TOP INSTEAD. OK? Is this really that hard? Do I really have to explain this to you? GOD.
  10. Ah, OK, a basic v-neck tee. The most inoffensive, benign cut of clothing you’ve shown me thus far. Yet, there’s something about the color… where have I seen that before? Ah yes, I last saw it spilling out of a yellow Avery fluorescent marker as I frantically tried to highlight the text of important forms and meanings in the late works of Le Corbusier an hour before my Art in Architecture midterm began. Look… unless you plan to don this for your family’s annual elk hunting trip in the Alaskan wilderness, there is just no reason you should be clearly visible to everyone within a 1.5-mile radius.

[heaving sigh]

Now, I’ve been pretty hard on you here, UO, but maybe one day you’ll understand that it was only out of love. I know you’re probably angry and confused (I certainly am), but with time I just hope you can finally cut ties with all these negative influences, and see your real worth and value. Which is, providing me with regular old shirts and cardigans.

I’m glad we had this little talk. Now go wash up, and never let me see you coming home looking like this again.

8 Responses to “i was nice until it was time to not be nice”

  1. I. Love. You.

    That is all.

  2. I am cringing thinking about what my butt would look like in those “bleached out” jeans. Oh my…

  3. Your rants are OH so fantastic. <3

  4. Hehehe. Totally true. Sadly though I have to say that their underwear is actually 1) really comfortable and 2) suitable for a non herion model figure. I took a gamble and it paid off. Yay!

  5. god, I love this. thank you for it. I adore everything you wrote especially about non maternity clothes and denim bikinis. I mean, where are these people going wearing these crazy ass clothes? a

  6. Seriously choking on my coffee hilarious.
    And they do all look quite cracked out.

  7. where the hell have i been to not see this?

    i agree with meghan – cracked out, for sure. they look sad wearing these clothes.

    and i totally agree – me and UO – we cool. we’ll say what’s up every once in a blue moon, catch up, but one of us always walks away like, “what the frick?” 9 times out of 10 it’s me.

  8. YES. I love their apartment section…and SOME of their fashion choices, but DDDAMN, lately…sometimes I get emails from them that I have to just stare at for a little while…C’mon!

    Excellent email, you told ’em good.

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