Hearsay: Wednesday, December 19, 2002

Okay, this being HearSay’s first proper winter in Cowtown, your columnist will hold back on accusing local rockers and the groupies who love them of being slaves to fashion — no, check that — of being slaves to a frickin’ Gap commercial. See, there’s this Gap tv ad that’s been running, like, every other minute in which really average-looking model-types lip-synch an oversung version of the O’Jays hit “Love Train” while wearing brightly striped sweaters, hats, gloves, and scarves. Said garments were found on at least a dozen patrons HearSay ran into the past couple weekends at club gigs.

HearSay hates showoffs, and every time it sees cute young people, like the no-talents in this Gap commercial, acting cute and young, your columnist just wants to pull a Presley and shoot up shit. More than showoffs, though, HearSay really hates sweatshops like the Gap that masquerade as reputable clothing companies. Across the third world, Gap clothing makers have complained of below-poverty wages, physical abuse from supervisors, unsafe working conditions, and suppression of their rights to unionize. The argument that these workers are better off making 55 cents a day than making zilch is absurd: First of all, there are huge clothing companies (like Timberland, especially) that treat their overseas workers with a modicum of dignity; secondly, a world like the one the Gap has helped create in which laboring 12 hours a day for a pittance is acceptable is no kind of place to live in. As the Enron and Worldcom debacles have proved, U.S. companies must be more responsible.

The moral of this story: Don’t be trendy — in the words of the late great fashion designer Moschino, “Kill fashion.” For more information, check out www.sweatshops.org.

Concert for the Commish

The usually staid Tarrant County Commissioners’ Courtroom, where, in the words of an acquaintance, attending meetings is comparable to watching sap make its way down a tree, was the unlikely setting for a pretty neat-o concert last week, courtesy of the O.D. Wyatt High School choral students and good ol’ Christmas standards. During the first few moments of the youngsters’ show, the bureaucrats in attendance remained as stiff as a glass of HearSay’s eggnog. Then, something ... magical happened. The music reached an incredible emotional peak, and the congregation was thusly lifted onto a spiritual sleigh as it careened through the depths of human feeling. Really white, really nerdy old dudes were even grooving along. The reason you’re hearing all this now is because you’ll get a chance to catch what you missed on cable access Ch. 7 at 7pm tonight (Thurs.), 10pm Sat., and 1:30pm Dec. 22. And while you won’t be able to really luxuriate in the sounds (the commissioners’ meetings are recorded in mono, not stereo), you will be able to see what the spirit of the season can do to even the least musical of us.

Send news tips, local music gossip, subpoenas to HearSay at hearsay@fwweekly.com.

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