Since the Holidays have arrived, a sacred ritual is being practiced by the adolescents and young adults in the Tri-State area. The seasonal "Ugly Sweater" party is underway again this year. This unusual gathering didn't really start until the mid to late 90's but has skyrocketed in popularity among the easily amused. During the 1970s and 1980s, grandmas, aunts and mothers around the world decided to knit or sew anything related to the holidays onto a sweater. This could range anywhere from a reindeer in the forest to two cats sitting under a Christmas tree. After working hard for months and months, the crafter then gives her cross-stitched achievement to an ungrateful relative. This relative is usually a nerd-faced child or acne-scared teen already having to deal with the growing pains of being in grade school. When receiving this sweater the only thing they see in their immediate winter future is a fancy swirly hairdo. They knew once they walked through those doors after winter break it was an anything-goes beat down.
Now we take these embarrassing sweaters and turn them into a measurement of how hilarious someone is by the hideousness of their Christmas sweater. Most weirdos and nerds in grade school go on to college and become well-rounded individuals, and with the help of those years of wedgies and bitch slaps and most importantly the holiday sweaters, that old skool nerd will soon be the hit of the party. As for the lucky kids that got off the hook from holiday sweaters, they will head off to the thrift store in order to score the ugliest of the ugly sweaters discarded by the family of a deceased grandma. As the white hats and Young Professionals shove the less fortunate out of the way, they score not only an ugly sweater, but also a Santa broach to go along with the theme of the party. There's nothing like having the ugliest sweater at the party to shoot you back to the top of the social ladder.
Since the birth of online social networking, I have seen nothing but invitations to "Ug Lee Sweater X-MaZ Par-tee." The description reads "Don we now your GAYEST apparel. Wear your ugliest sweaters from your childhood that you hated so much and come to Tina's on Friday for a super OMG holiday party. Complete with Spiked Egg Nog and a keg of Bud Light (thanks to Jill's brother). There will be Snow Ball Corn Hole in the back yard and a contest for the Ugliest Holiday Sweater!"
I hesitate to press "attending" because I know how played out ugly sweater parties are. I think back to my first ugly sweater party in college and how silly it was and what a sweet find I had at the time. I then click the attendance button and remember that just because something is played out doesn't mean it won't be fun ... plus there will be booze. Just like the 80's and mustache parties, the reason they don't go away is because they are always a blast. Mustaches are totally the coolest things ever and if you can grown one you are by far the best person in the world. The 1980s produced some of the best music and fashion of all time.
The holidays are probably the most nostalgic time of the year and bring up many emotions about family and friends. Most people seem to have a sense of joy because they reminisce about the times when they were kids and unwrapped that NES they always wanted or found out Santa wasn't real. Just like the 80's and mustaches, we associate these events with good times and no matter how played out they are, a fun time is sure to be had. So suit up, no matter how much of a douche bag these sweaters make you look. It's time to get weird on Santa Slurpees.