Is SkirtCafe Going "Femme"?

Discuss recent changes, make suggestions, etc.

Should we split the board and create FreestyleCafe?

yes --- create FreestyleCafe for a more "femme" approach to fashion freedom, and leave SkirtCafe as a place for men's fashion.
7
23%
no --- let's just all get along, the diversity is beneifical.
23
77%
 
Total votes : 30

Re: Is SkirtCafe Going "Femme"?

Postby Bob » Wed Jul 23, 2008 5:27 am

Thank you for many thoughtful replies.

At the end of the day, this is "Bob's Cafe" (and to a lesser extend "Bob & Carl's Cafe"). Any endeavor is going to be more successful if reflects the interests and desires of the owners.


Many people have said that this is "Bob's Cafe." But I will disagree. I would like to emphasize --- and re-emphasize --- that this forum is NOT about my personal interests and desires. If it were so, there would be no need to ask others their opinions, I would just make the forum go wherever I'm headed in life. That is what happened at the Atrium. But I see more of a sense of responsibility to the community than that, and I am just one member. I am making decisions about the Cafe based on what I think is best for the community over the long run. That is why I appreciate that so many people have taken the time to give their two cents worth on this topic.

Reading the above and seeing where things have gone, it seems that the Cafe today has turned into the Atrium of 4 years ago. Something will be done about that...

Apparently, X-Marks has done very well at their goal, and really brought a lot to the table. That is great! If that were the end of the story, I would just shut down the Cafe. However, I think that there is a "market niche" for kilts-and-skirts. I personally do not read X-Marks. Basically, because there is not much there that I'm interested in talking about (and that doesn't mean I don't wear kilts). Kilts are a narrow, well-defined garment; after a while, why bother talking about them, just wear them. It would be like an entire forum dedicated to discussing khakis and dress slacks. Actually, a forum about trousers would probably have MORE interesting discussion due to the much wider variety of trousers available. Also, X-Marks at least pays lip service to Celtic culture as an integral part of kilt-wearing, complete with forums on upcoming Highland Games. It's not a fashion site in that sense, it's a culture site. And that's OK.

But I want SkirtCafe to be a fashion site. It should to delve more into what I would call "skirted fashion" (whether the skirt portion is a kilt or skirt or a whatnot). Fashion is not just a piece of clothing. It is a language, a message, a non-verbal form of communication. X-Marks took an existing language (the kilt) and reinforced it. The CD/TV forums (and at times the Atrium) take an existing language (woman's fashion) and appropriate it in one way or another for men. I don't want to do either one at SkirtCafe. I want to see how we can work on developing a new language, that of skirted men's fashion.

This is not "fashion freedom." As far as I can tell, "fashion freedom" means you can wear whatever you want and still call yourself "Joe." Well, we've discovered that we pretty much all have that, at least when we're not at work. But it's not a USEFUL kind of freedom. In refusing to address the underlying meanings of fashion and claiming that it's "just clothing", fashion freedom leads to anarchy.

There's a parallel in words: we have "word freedom," meaning we can say whatever we like, even if it's vulgar. And now and then, people claim that gangsta rap music is harmless because the rappers don't REALLY mean all the awful lyrics they're spouting, and kids don't listen to the words anyway. But few people really believe that claim.

Well, we ARE saying things with our choice of fashion, and most of us want to understand what we're saying. By continually beating the drum of "fashion freedom," we're ignoring that, so it's hard to develop any new linguistic territory of men's skirted fashion. So instead, we just end up by default seeming to appropriate women's fashion.

Or another way to look at it: fashion is art. We're looking to expand the palette. But we're not looking to paint randomly.
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Re: Is SkirtCafe Going "Femme"?

Postby Peter v » Wed Jul 23, 2008 5:53 am

( have just read Bob's last input. I can fully understand. and I do see room for people at both ends of the spectrum, with the majority making up the image, whatever that may be. )

What is it with you guys, don't you READ? :shock:

Be the majority, end of story.

It is the lack of input, THE LACK OF INPUT from you guys, YOU guys, the guys that you are talking about, the guys with those fine kilts, and those guys who are just guys with a skirt on, and look the part, great! I mean that!
If you don't post, then even one posting against none from you guys gives the overhand. :shock: :( :?
There is no overhand when you all show the interest that is suggested. Or is the forum just a place to linger, in silence, sitting by the fire, and dozing off? You may do so, it's free, but the other men are awake and active, and all the while being men, not flamin' Tv's or whatever, as that suggestion seems to be slowly creeping in, which is definitely NOT TRUE. Believe me, I am sure they would not want to be here, if I am correctly informed.

The topics have always been there. And so what if the membership grows so will the postings. It is up to you guys to show all "others" how interested you all are. (by the postings because that is what we are talking about) How many of ""YOU"" are there? 50? 100? 200? 400 of the 448? Let us hear something from all you members, then everything is in balance. And you don't HAVE TO READ any threads that you don't like. Or are you affraid of what people who are not interested in the matter at all will think if they read some threads? It is not for discriminative eyes. It is for us, firstly and then maybe secondly for interested partys, which does definitely not mean that every word has to be thought over for public vieuwing. It Is you guys who let the forum down, apparently.

Quote: "I, personally, can't see any man wearing a dress in public. To me, this is female impersonation. Our society is unable to cope with this idea. "

You may think so, and YOU don't have to wear a dress if you don't want to, but I prove you wrong. For your information, I wear dresses now frequently, in the Netherlands, and they are great to wear, extremely comfortable. With no problems whatsoever, society is ready for it, just as ready as they are for men in kilts or the like skirts. It's all the same to them with regards to something being new. And people can distinguish between a man who is really impersonating a woman and who is not. And if it is a problem for them, then they can always ask friendly. If you are affraid for people who think nasty things and want to hurt you, then carry a gun. Loaded. :shock: Don't make such a fuss about it. You may not want men in dresses, or even other skirts for that matter, that is your prerogatief.

And how many are that, dressed otherwise? Compared to all the men dressed moderately? You would think that the men dressed otherwise are taking over the world. If you really want another impression, one of the overhand being men dressed very soberly, manly, in skirts, make it happen. Don't give others the blame. Let us say there are now twenty postings about the finer things that can go with wearing skirts, from enthousiastic men wearing skirts. If the soberly dressed men would post 50 postings then the impression for all that compare, must be one of domination representative for the skirting community of those men to which you belong. And frankly nobody can see anything without looking at the postings and actually reading them. So if skirts and kilts are your thing, only read those posts.

But please all of you don't state the interest from the posters as a plot to take over the forum or whatever. What are they to do, when your postings dwindle back to I don't know, one per week? Does that mean that to keep the image up the other posters must wait a few months to post or otherwise disturb the balans?

From the quote, Uncle Al with all due respect, you may think personally that that is female impersonation, then so is wearing a skirt! and again, how many are that in total? What numbers are we talking about? And if there are numerous men doing that, where are ALL THE OTHER kilt and sober skirt wearing guys? What do women do when they wear pants? Impersonate men? As is discussed so often but not enough, in all clothing, no matter what, it is not so much the clothing, as who you are, in that clothing that counts. We are all men in alternative clothing to that which is currently booked as being the standard clothing type for men in the western world.

And again, if all you guys who are beautifully dressed in neutral skirts, kilts or whatever, which is great, would let yourself be seen and heard of, especially on this forum, then you may have the overhand, and get public credit for that. But don't think that all the other men who are also men in skirts will wait with their interest, with their posts until another post is placed, before placing one of their own. Who knows how active, how many of you guys there are actually wearing kilts and neutral skirts out there? But there can be a tally of interest, of postings on the forum which can give an idea.

I would love to be part of a forum that for the greater part is of open minded kilt wearers, and of men who wear skirts in a way that is an extension of their manly dress beforehand, only difference being the skirt instead of the pants. But you guys must be there. It is no good complaining if there are only two men posting, and there happen to be let us say, ten others posting, of the 448 users :roll: :shock: :shock: :shock: :shock: :? . Where the ... are they? Complain about all of them being absent qua forum activity.

"The posts of men wearing skirts, hose, and womens shoes do not belong here." They do belong, but not as a part of skirts and kilts. And certainly not in any women impersonation way, and maybe the thought alone of doing things that from our school days was stamped into us, not reason, not thinking, but just "men don't wear anything that women wear, at all," is just too mind boggling for some to comprehend. That must be way over the edge, well it is not. For open minded people it is understandable. Unless there is a doctrine that outlines precicely how a man should look, and precicely what clothes may and may not be worn, more like the rules and regulations for the real kilt costume, then anything goes. And if you guys are the actual basis of skirt wearing men, then there is nothing to worry about, because you will always be in the majority, be the determining factor, and all other men who dare explore, are just a small minority somewhere. No threat thus.

Who are discussing this very situation? Possibly not more than ten different men, and I happen to have the time to be able to react, and I do. In favour of all. In favour of an open minded society, of the skirt cafe. But we men can't go blindfolded with ideas from the early 1900's. We must go with the times. There is genuine interest with many men, not all mind you, to go further than just plain skirts, to take skirting a step further. Which does not say that they are impersonating women, NOT NOT NOT..
So tell me who the real minority are? And again I say that it is great for men to just trade trousers for skirts.
A man is the same man in a pair of pants or a skirt. It is only the way people look at him that makes the difference.
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Re: Is SkirtCafe Going "Femme"?

Postby Departed Member » Wed Jul 23, 2008 9:59 am

Peter v., with all due respect, you're looking at (skirted) life from the narrowest of all angles - your own. Most folk here will not be familiar with the part of the world you live in, the culture, the extremely 'laid back' atmosphere. And Friesland is notably more 'detached' from the 'real world', even if we were just discussing the Netherlands. Even if folk wanted to emulate your personal 'style', it wouldn't be practical in the environments most of us inhabit. It would, and I'm certainly not condoning it, merely invite abuse - verbal definitely and physical, mmnn, maybe - in most places we live. Living in an isolated community can go 'either way'. Tight, unwritten 'rules' in one, total acceptance of eccentric behaviour in another. You may be lucky(?) enough to live in the latter, most of us don't.
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Re: Is SkirtCafe Going "Femme"?

Postby crfriend » Wed Jul 23, 2008 11:18 am

Bob wrote:I want SkirtCafe to be a fashion site. It should to delve more into what I would call "skirted fashion" (whether the skirt portion is a kilt or skirt or a whatnot). Fashion is not just a piece of clothing. It is a language, a message, a non-verbal form of communication. X-Marks took an existing language (the kilt) and reinforced it. The CD/TV forums (and at times the Atrium) take an existing language (woman's fashion) and appropriate it in one way or another for men. I don't want to do either one at SkirtCafe. I want to see how we can work on developing a new language, that of skirted men's fashion.

This is not "fashion freedom." As far as I can tell, "fashion freedom" means you can wear whatever you want and still call yourself "Joe." Well, we've discovered that we pretty much all have that, at least when we're not at work. But it's not a USEFUL kind of freedom. In refusing to address the underlying meanings of fashion and claiming that it's "just clothing", fashion freedom leads to anarchy.


Well put!

I've been wondering for a while now whether we're "going' femme' or going crazy'", and touched on that notion in a couple of earlier posts. The way I see it is that absolute "fashion freedom" is akin to anarchy -- a cacophony rather than a symphony -- and represents a really good way to make ourselves look like clowns. It's tough to do that with kilts because kilts are well-understood articles, and there is, as Bob points out, a defined structure to their use -- not unlike the way a formal grammar holds spoken and written languages together.

Make no bones about it; we are in uncharted territory -- Terra Incognita -- with our ideas of non-trousered fashion, especially when it comes to the so-called "Western world". So, we owe it to ourselves, and those around us, to explore this new landscape carefully and deliberately, and to discover or create ways to properly communicate our intent to casual observers.

Well, we ARE saying things with our choice of fashion, and most of us want to understand what we're saying.


We "speak", to use the analogy, volumes when we dress in an alternative manner, and sometimes we don't necessarily know what we're saying. Women have been using fashion as a tool for quite a while; it's one way of establishing a "pecking order" or hierarchy. Men have too, but within more constrained choices -- mainly choices of tailoring and cost. It's only from a naieve view by an outsider that women "have it all" -- they are saying things with how they dress. We say things too; are we saying what we intend? Do we know what we're saying at all?
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Re: Is SkirtCafe Going "Femme"?

Postby Peter v » Wed Jul 23, 2008 12:05 pm

Thank you Merlin, quite right, as long as the fears outed are real, have been tested in one way or the other. In many cases at first, there is a feeling of "will other people accept me"? That I presume is what everybody goes through, but how many do actually test it for a fact?

Perhaps it would be of interest and learning to state facts, of the known resistance there is in certain parts of the world where people live, without giving name and address, but naming the town, city. So that way there can be a real picture drawn.
There is a difference between the thought that you will not be "accepted" and then? And actual experience, by dressing skirted and going out there.

I have been to Amsterdam, Breda, Groningen, Leeuwarden, Utrecht, Den Hague, and more smaller cities and towns, so I can say from experience that it is not all that bad in reality.

Fearing nonacceptance and acting on that is something totally different than actually going dressed in whatever manner out on the street and seeing for yourself what happens. And even then, if something did then happen, that does not say automatically that everybody would do that to you and all skirted men. Or is being robbed by one person a reason to say that everybody will rob you? Not. I think there should be very well thought over truthful judgements made not based on any assumptions but on facts, leaving any personal feelings out of the equasion. What one man does not dare, others may well do without any adverse effects.

I do believe that in some places, there may be certain elements who may be detrimental to men wearing anything out of the ordinary. But even in crime ridden places, not everybody gets mugged, robbed, raped, burgled etc etc.

Just like the cities I have visited, although some I was not travelling all over, I have had no problems at all.
If I by chance had met up with one mad man, then I may have had another experience, but even then, I would only state that I was targetted by one individual and that all the other people did absolutely nothing to me at all. Whether or not I would be scared enough not to wear skirts again or travel there again is my personal experience and not representative for all men or what the reaction of what all the other people think and foremost would do.
Facts. Not fiction.

I do imagine that In the US where practically everybody has a loaded gun, and there are possibly more extreme followings than in the Netherlands, the chance of being overcome by something nasty is a bit greater than over here, but again, that is just speculation. And even then, perhaps percentually maybe even safer than in the Netherlands per head. :roll: If you fly you will certainly crash, NO . There is always a possibility that you may be involved in a crash, but most likely with even greater assurance you will never have anything happen to you. :roll: Although men in skirts, especially as I do, stand out in a crowd, for those seeking such people, that is still no reason to speculate any danger, and then also WHAT would you THINK would happen? Be sworn at? get hussled, pushed about? I don't know and nobody knows until it is tried and proven.

So If "you" , there is anybody who has, ( only facts ) have practical experience about neighbourhoods, locations where gangs operate, hell's angels roam, maffia sneak about, etc, state the fact, do not speculate that that will automatically mean anything nasty will happen to you.

I live on the take off and landing route of the Leeuwarder military and private airport, that doesn't mean that I will be hit by falling parts or a crashing airoplane. :shock: :? :roll:

So separate personal feelings / fears from factual situations.

I do believe anybody that states that there is a possibility that any man wearing any skirted outfit may be targetted by any mad person. That will not say automatically that it will happen.
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Re: Is SkirtCafe Going "Femme"?

Postby Peter v » Wed Jul 23, 2008 12:36 pm

Crfriend,
"The way I see it is that absolute "fashion freedom" is akin to anarchy -- a cacophony rather than a symphony -- and represents a really good way to make ourselves look like clowns."
Only to a certain degree do I concur.
Will you make yourself look like a clown? I don't think so. Will most men who now wear skirts change the way they wear them? I don't think so. Full fashion freedom is something we give ourselves, and is recognised by the public. It gives ourselves the room to experiment, move about freely in without having to declare to anybody what it is that we are now doing, which is the crux of this part of the discussion. The only men who make clowns of themselves are those who make clowns of themselves.

I believe that fashion freedom should be the basis on which to build.
How each of us in that freedom goes about, how he dresses is his own choice. There is nobody pushing anybody anywhere in that freedom. But to not propagate that very freedom and to present skirt wearers and the public with a restricted imagery of men in skirts is doing nobody any good. There is no reason to fear fashion freedom. As each and every one of us can go as far as he wishes, or thinks is safe to do.

If you get your driving licence, you are free to drive around the whole country if you wish, and in all cars to a certain maximum category. So you don't have to decalre to anybody why you are driving a mini or a big chrysler, whatever, you have the freedom to do that. And you can choose to drive only up and down your own street, even only the driveway if you have one. And if you change your mind, you can then drive to other places etc etc. You don't even have to use the licence at all. Fashion freedom is the licence to drive. There are no real limitations but your own. Don't ask to be limited.

And for the question how many men are going to go all out? Not many I suspect, and they are all men who have taken the fashion freedom with skirted garments. Each man should be seen in his own right. Meaning that everybody should be judged on his own merrits. And if the suggestion is corect, why worry? practically all skirt wearers, the majority, will be manly men wearing neutral skirts, amply dominating the skirted scene, and placing a very manly image, such as the known kilted image. No problem.
Am i seeing things too positive for some? Or are others doom thinkers? Having the right to do things does not mean that you will go to the extremes. But you may. ( in the eyes of the public. )
A man is the same man in a pair of pants or a skirt. It is only the way people look at him that makes the difference.
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Re: Is SkirtCafe Going "Femme"?

Postby crfriend » Wed Jul 23, 2008 1:18 pm

Peter v wrote:
crfriend wrote: The way I see it is that absolute "fashion freedom" is akin to anarchy -- a cacophony rather than a symphony -- and represents a really good way to make ourselves look like clowns.

Only to a certain degree do I concur.
Will you make yourself look like a clown? I don't think so.


I won't make myself look ridiculous intentionally, but that does not remove the possibility that I might be perceived as looking ridiculous -- and it's the perception that's important. We have some control over that, and we need to exercise that control in a sane judicous manner so we don't mistakenly send the "wrong message".

Will most men who now wear skirts change the way they wear them? I don't think so.


That's at the discretion of each and every one of us -- we, as individuals, must decide on the impression we wish to have the world perceive us as.

If you get your driving licence, you are free to drive around the whole country if you wish, and in all cars to a certain maximum category. So you don't have to decalre to anybody why you are driving a mini or a big chrysler, whatever, you have the freedom to do that.


Have you ever noticed that what one drives sends a pretty strong signal about the character of the driver? We had a bit of a row about SUVs a while back which finally calmed down after one of our then-members narrowly escaped serious injury when he rolled his SUV. There was plenty of discussion in that thread about what sort of message an automobile-driver sends to the world by the simple choice of what type of vehicle to drive.

Fashion freedom is the licence to drive.


Having a driving license also dramatically increases the odds that one is going to be in a crash. It'll not (usually) happen by design or intent; it'll happen by accident because of lack of attention to detail. The same can be considered true of what we wear; if we have absolute freedom and do not exercise proper restraint, we risk looking like fools to the general populace. Likewise, if one undertakes driving without exercising proper restraint and control, he's risking a crash.
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Re: Is SkirtCafe Going "Femme"?

Postby HockeySkirt » Wed Jul 23, 2008 3:03 pm

Bob and Carl have mentioned a lot about the desire to discuss the total aesthetics of an outfit. I agree, in principle. In practice we struggle to do that at SkirtCafe. The problem, as I see it, might be summed up with the classic freedom of speech quote

"The right to be heard does not automatically include the right to be taken seriously."

We might likewise say fashion freedom does not automatically include the right to be taken seriously. For many here, being taken seriously is a crucial test, but others shrug it off, sometimes reacting angrily that society should take them seriously regardless of how they portray themselves. The result of this conflicting viewpoint is that rarely is honest meaningful feedback given at SkirtCafe.

This is a conflict between two groups
1) those who seek a fashion freedom that society respects, and
2) those who demand that society accept their personal fashion freedom

No group is right or wrong -- just the aims of these groups are often mutually exclusive, particularly in the area of discussing aesthetics. Group 2 are rarely going to be interested in the remarks of group 1, and will often react angrily to them if offered. Group 1 will be exasperated by the choices of group 2.

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Re: Is SkirtCafe Going "Femme"?

Postby JRMILLER » Wed Jul 23, 2008 4:04 pm

Hmm,
Is this something like it is better to beg forgiveness instead of asking permission?

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Re: Is SkirtCafe Going "Femme"?

Postby Peter v » Wed Jul 23, 2008 10:14 pm

Very interesting remark Hockey skirt,

"This is a conflict between two groups
1) those who seek a fashion freedom that society respects, and
2) those who demand that society accept their personal fashion freedom"

What about:
3) those who know they have fashion freedom, take it, and hope that the public, by seeing men behaving well of course, in whatever clothing they have chosen, will slowly all start realising that there is a trend happening, men breaking with convention, pants, and wearing skirts, of all soorts just as there are all soorts of pants outfits, assorti.People have to see men in skirts to really understand what is going on, and it is the intelect and willingness to understand what they see that determines the rate of "acceptance" by those who are respectful, intellectual enough to verify public acceptance. Noting that there will never be acceptance by the whole of the public, so we, men in skirts should not hide behind the people who are too dumb, disrespectful, unwilling, uninterested, etc to acknowledge that men have the right to wear what they like, may do so freely but as with everything, respectful, and should not be hampered in any way, discriminated in any way for that.

We can wear skirts, we are free to do so, the only real thing missing is a legal protection from any negative influences brought about by people who do not acknowledge it and do their best to stop it or make life miserable. As of now, all those ( millions) who see, who know but are silent, do not actually do and do not want to do anything detrimental to the men wearing skirts are in fact silently voting for freestyling, for fashion freedom, for the right of men to dress differently, skirted if they want to. They have given a silent vote for acceptance of what we are doing. I think that we should not linger too long hiding behind fears, suggestions that men cannot go ahead, that we have to present a certain image first, have to take a step back, wait, wait for what? There is a part of the public which, even if there is somewhere an ammendment in parlement that men in skirts in any form should be accepted as normal full citizens, and have the same rights as men in pants,. :shock: :shock: :shock: :roll: :roll: ( what the f, We as citizens, people HAVE THOSE RIGHTS. wearing any form of clothing or being naked changes nothing) will never accept men in skirts. It is that group which it seems that some members are suggesting to wait on, for the "acceptance" that they suggest is needed. Those people will never give it, so just forget them. Nobody is legally allowed to harm any other person, but despite all the laws and regulations, a certain number of people still do that. No law will change that, No "acceptance" will give full 100 procent coverage. that is the real impossible dream. If you personally live in a neighbourhood of for example ethnic background, which has hatred for anything "other", then just MOVE, otherwise for YOU there will never be acceptance. Which does not mean that "the acceptance" is not there. It is in my opinion. If you look long enough you will find somebody that does not "accept what we do, and you van then say "see, I am right, there is not acceptance" :shock: :? :shock: :? :roll:

IIf we only want to see the people who will never accept, then stop everything. That is not real. I say wear the outfit you wish to wear, be proud of yourself as you are, do it first of all for yourself, then for the public that even TODAY accept it, even though there is no official tally, and people don't as yet speak up about it. That may even never happen, that openly speaking up, it is not a big enough issue. it is for us, but not for most others.
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Re: Is SkirtCafe Going "Femme"?

Postby Peter v » Wed Jul 23, 2008 10:37 pm

Crfriend, the only people who are seen as clowns are those who happen to have the publisc that wants to see a clown in his person. i would argue that that is definitely NOT, I repeat NOT the ( for my thinking) gross of the public, but a small minority. Those individuals probably wear white sheets with eye holes, haev sick minds. :shock: If you see "yourself " (meaning any skirted man, ) as a clown, you probably put the wrong clothes on in the morning after a long night in the bar. :roll: :?
That self image is definately not good. change that first, be proud of who you are, what you wear.

Then only pay attention to normal respectful people, and not others who may make even a living from ridiculing or worse, other people. All our lives we keep such loe to the ground individuals as far away as possible, and don't listen to them. Why put so much weight on those people now?

And even IF someone would see a man in a skirt as a clown, too bad for him, if he has such bad eyesight. :shock: :wink:
If a mad man comes to your door and says that the world has ended, that he is a martian, fantasize, do you believe him? Is his "truth" your truth? Is he a God all mighty over your sound mind? No. You call 911 or whatever number, and get rid of that idiot.

Men in skirts are definitely not clowns, and no matter how people dress, as long as it has no direct negative influence on other people, so what? Here in Amsterdam there was a woman artist who made vclothes from plastic bags, it was a ridicules sight, when compared to normal day wear, but people with normal intellect saw her as another person, not an idiot, not a clown. She was an artist. Why should men in skirts bend to the whims of others when there is nothing being said, unless you are in real life threatened. But that is not the discussed issue here. No normal people will see men in skirts as clowns. Never. I deal only with normal people. That is normal. Otherwise I and all you the other members would not be able to live, as there is an idiot to be found everywhere, in the traffic, at work, on the street, the crime rates confirm that. But we do go driving, do go out, do work with other people, do live. Sure, there is a risk that something may happen, :roll: :roll: :roll: The only way to stop THAT is to commit, well you know :roll: :shock: :( :( .

That is not what we do. We live. Why then do men seem to let themselves be withheld so much because of others"? Is there a deeper reason? If there is no direct danger. It might be their own insecurity, and they may be seeking an excuse behind which to hide. :roll: That is always a personal issue if ti is so. I do not think that in that case there is any ground to put restrictions upon members of a ccommunity as ours because of the fears of some.

But I am no psychologist, I may be totally wrong.
A man is the same man in a pair of pants or a skirt. It is only the way people look at him that makes the difference.
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Re: Is SkirtCafe Going "Femme"?

Postby Peter v » Wed Jul 23, 2008 10:45 pm

Where are the other members in this discussion, which is in my opinion very important, as by talking in depth, there may be finally issues cleared up where there may have been misunderstandings over. I do my best to describe things as well as I can, but see very little response form other members, except crfriend and a few others that can be counted on one hand.
A man is the same man in a pair of pants or a skirt. It is only the way people look at him that makes the difference.
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Re: Is SkirtCafe Going "Femme"?

Postby alexthebird » Thu Jul 24, 2008 12:59 am

Peter v wrote:Where are the other members in this discussion, which is in my opinion very important, as by talking in depth, there may be finally issues cleared up where there may have been misunderstandings over.


Frankly, I've been waiting for things to settle a bit before chipping in, because I think there are too many issues on the table at the moment. On the whole, I've found that Bob's post in response to the "this is Bob's Cafe" post and some of Carl's posts have essentially spoken my mind. If I were to add a personal touch to what has already been said, I would add that, in my opinion, the root of much of our (both those of us who are in the cafe and the world at large) discomfort at men stretching the boundaries of fashion choices is buried deep in our collective concepts of gender and sexuality. I'm not going to go there today, though.

I really think that an issue that needs a little exploration is what those of us who are members of the cafe want from the cafe. The mission statement is pretty clear, and Bob has always been consistent when describing what the cafe is, but what it really is is what we, the members, make it.

There are some of us who see the cafe as a social space, where you can be with mates who share a fondness of unbifurcated bottoms. Log in, blow off a little steam, tell a story or two, and feel a little less isolated.

Then there are some of us who see the cafe as a place test the waters, explore a little, and maybe do a bit of strategizing on how to convince the rest of the world that men who choose alternatives to trousers aren't pervs or deviants. These folks can make the first group a little uncomfortable but mostly its no big deal.

And there are some of us who want to really stretch the boundaries, if not erase them altogether. This group would look at the first group as being far too conservative, and the first group can be genuinely disturbed by these folks. Those in the middle can mediate a bit, but ultimately, I'm not sure that the motivations of the first and third groups are compatible. Perhaps they could be, with skillful moderation and tons of good will on everybody's part, but it's my opinion (there's that phrase again) that the tension we've experienced recently has more to do with how people view the cafe than it does how they view the world.
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Re: Is SkirtCafe Going "Femme"?

Postby Sarongman » Thu Jul 24, 2008 2:22 am

Superbly put, alexthebird. I also see the three strands in our online society, and put myself into the conservative category, due to a look at my wardrobe containing ankle length cargos in olive, khaki and denim. I have seen posts that I have quite strongly disagreed with but held my hand from expressing my thoughts as, this should be a forum expressing a fairly wide cross section of views which should be held without any fear of written abuse. Whatever happened to the civilised notion of"I do not agree with you but let us agree to disagree"?
It will not always be summer: build barns---Hesiod
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Re: Is SkirtCafe Going "Femme"?

Postby Sasquatch » Thu Jul 24, 2008 2:48 am

Bob wrote:Well, we ARE saying things with our choice of fashion, and most of us want to understand what we're saying. By continually beating the drum of "fashion freedom," we're ignoring that, so it's hard to develop any new linguistic territory of men's skirted fashion. So instead, we just end up by default seeming to appropriate women's fashion.


In our choices we do send messages, both in our individual choices and as the larger group "men who choose skirts" to which we all belong. Part of our problem is articulating the statement we, as that larger group, make with our clothing. I've been reading and corresponding in this forum for about a year and a half, and I don't think I'm any closer to expressing it with words than I was when I started. It would be a meaningful discussion to have among ourselves, if we can do so without hard feelings...or feeling "creeped out" by what someone else has to say.

When I first joined the Cafe I suggested that skirt wearing among men had a socio-sexual basis (in no way implying gay or trans-anything (not that there's anything wrong with it)), but I was widely decried by those who insisted our kindred cause runs no deeper than what I call "the three"; those being"comfort" and "freedom" and "equality". I was told that to even suggest otherwise hurt our cause. Is that the sum total message we send? Is there a common thread that unites us in a deeper level? And, importantly, what message is being read by the bifurcated majority? Perhaps I shouldn't care what they think, but I can't help but wonder if they hear "the three" and regard them as superficial, the way I do.

I still think we (as the larger group) share unique and largely unexpressed values related to our choices. I can't do my own feelings justice with my feeble communication skills, but when I'm in a skirt, I feel both lightened and enlightened; lightened as if the weight of social expectations has been lifted from my shoulders, and enlightened, as though I possess some esoteric knowledge others can't fathom. But would I feel the same if men in skirts were universally accepted? Is this something a bit exhibitionistic? I can't help but feel that I also derive a thrill from standing apart, pushing the envelope, so to speak, though others on this forum certainly push that envelope much farther than I would dare to...or care to. I'd wager that this is also a factor for a lot of us.

Well, okay, too much introspection hurts Sasquatch's brain. Bob, you've always seemed like you've done a bit of introspection. Can I pass this ball back to you? Kick it around a bit and tell us what you think!

Thanks,
Sasq
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