Scarf dilemmas plagued my trip. The Europeans know how to rock a scarf and I found myself in serious want of a trinsy piece of fabric to augment myself with too. This can lead to all kinds of irrational behavior.
In Berlin, I stood in a store admiring a $500 piece of cashmere around my neck. And I was actually trying to justify it to myself. In a rare moment of common sense triumphing, I left that one behind.
However, after I wrapped that Berlin job, I went to visit a German friend of mine in Amsterdam. And the Dutch don’t leave home without a kaffiyeh, large cotton square Middle Eastern scarves that are harder to make look cool than you would think. Especially when, despite that fact that hundreds of thousands of average Middle Easterners wear these like we would a throw on a baseball cap, in America they are perceived as terrorist standard issue.
But after a week of seeing them on all the cool Dutch folk of A’dam I begin to put outfits together in my head. And not long after, buy a couple of them.
My German mate Uli quite rightly points out though, that I may be sashaying straight into Guantanamo Bay from LAX if anyone opens my bag. I have a beard and can look on the wrong side of brown. The scarf could be the tipping point. So I leave one behind, but take the Jordanian one with me, because it is just so cool. And the Jordanians and Americans are friends right?
The folly of this hits me as LA comes into view out of my plane window. I realize that the subtleties of Middle Eastern textiles may get lost on a LAX customs officer and I seriously begin to think that I should edit by luggage. I also seriously begin to think what a fucking idiot I am. The next thing I know I’m picking up my bag with its seriously unwise accessory inside and with no chance to remove it.
I line up and notice that I am sweating. This is a bad sign. Maybe I should just pull the scarf out now and dab my brow and get this over and done with.
Look cool, look cool. It’s not drugs, it’s not against the law, you’ll be fine, you’re a moron, you’re going to be someone’s bitch in jail, you’ve watched OZ, some Nazi will be tattooing his name on your arse in a month with a bic pen and a lighter…
Then suddenly I’m out, in a shuttle bus, in my car and in front of my mirror admiring my newest hard-won fashion item.
If you would like one, just go to your nearest Urban Outfitters, like any of the hundreds all over the States, where I discovered you can now buy the Palestinian ones for $22.95.