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The Best of the Internet's Response to That New York Times Monocle Story

Everyone from The Washington Post to Mr. Peanut himself had something to say about the much-maligned trend piece.

Responses to trend stories in The New York Times can come fast and furious, but the Internet's reaction to the paper's latest trend piece—on the return of the monocle—was swift, unforgiving, and absolutely hilarious.

The original is worth a read. In it, Allen Salkin reports that sales of the single lens accessory are on the upswing, both at home and abroad:

"From the trendy enclaves of Berlin cafes and Manhattan restaurants to gin ads and fashion magazines, the monocle is taking its turn alongside key 21st-century accoutrements like sharply tucked plaid shirts and certificates in swine butchering."

To its credit, the article backs up this claim with cold hard facts. One eyewear shop in London has seen the sale of monocles double in the past five years. And online retailer Warby Parker has watched sales of its $50 monocle increase by over 150% since 2012. A spokeswoman for the brand told Details that the company sold 574 of the one-lensed wonders in 2013.

They say numbers don't lie, but they still can't a quell a good ol' media backlash. Below, we've rounded up the best tweets, posts, and other comments on the matter—including the official statement from perhaps the most conspicuous monocle wearer in the land, Mr. Peanut.

The Tweets

Twitter commenters were quick to put down the story as made up fluff, and some went so far as to make jokes at the expense of some of the Times' other recent trend pieces.

The Posts

Mark Berman of The Washington Post penned one of many sarcastic responses to the article, in which he pondered what place the monocle will hold in history. (The BBC, Time, andVanity Fair also weighed in.)
Someday, many years from now, future generations will look back and wonder what it was like living at the dawn of the 21st century. Did we worry for the future of the planet? Were we unknowingly on the precipice of some great, unimaginable leap forward? Now we have something that should be etched into stone and preserved forever, because it encapsulates so well what it was like to live in the year 2014 and to be part of the great monocle revival.
New York Magazine actually did look into the monocle's history—or at least its history with the Times—and found that the paper has been burying and resurrecting it for over a century.
Digging through the Times archives … turns up at least five previous attempts to define its trendiness, dating back to 1902. The monocle, one must conclude, is invincible.

The Final Word

So who got the last comment? Mr. Peanut, the monocled Planters mascot, whose corporate handlers released the following statement:

"It's been brought to my attention that Hipsters are following in my stylish footsteps by sporting monocles. I guess they understand what success on a man's face looks like."

Mr. Peanut advised that men brave enough to try the look "focus on fashion first, try not to blink, and remember that there is only room for one monocle-wearing gentleman in a room."

—Details associate online style editor Justin Fenner.

• • •


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Image courtesy of Warby Parker.
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