I Can’t Say It, So My Shirt Will

Art and life are at it again, playing the imitation game.


I knew I was subsisting in the right cosmos the minute that “copy paste” became a metaphor for fornication (Metaphornication?).

Fran Lebowitz famously said, “If people don’t want to hear from you, what makes you think they want to hear from your sweater?”and I have cited it at least five times on Man Repeller. This is arguably because the prolific writer’s inflections are so astute, once, twice, three times repeated just isn’t enough. It is also, however, highly possible that every story I have written that has warranted the use of that quote until this point has been warm up for the Olympic equivalent of my reflecting on sweaters that say stuff and t-shirts that show stuff.

Back on the chicken-or-egg bandwagon, the automobile is stocked with just one question: which came first? Art is imitating life — or is it vice versa? — with a recent collaboration between UK-based apparel brand Être Cecile (you remember that nod to Woody Allen in the form of a black cotton box strapped across my chest that read: Written and Directed by Woody Allen — don’t you?) and meme-base artist Richie Culver. The anterior is responsible for the thick black block letter maxims that appear on the t-shirts and muscle tanks which, in his own words, feature “technology that is crude and urban; the sentiment behind it…ancient and pan-cultural.”

The t-shirts support a digitally apt nod to the world we occupy, borrowing its lingo to make a larger, independent comment on our respective states of existence. With “My mistake was staying logged on,” we can universally attest to having erroneously stayed on but when we did, we called it lingering. With “You make my hard drive full,” you’re not experiencing an issue that RAM can assuage so much as you are addressing an emotional condition that can be deemed triumphant.

They will obviously mean different things for their wearers, though. Where “online I just feel stronger,” is concerned, the blouse is like a personal affirmation of my dual existence. The one that is independent of being online and the one I have cultivated to shoulder the former, but that effectively cannot exist without Wifi. For another wearer, that strength could be measured in how far one anon can push another.

The more time I spend on these t-shirts, the further it occurs to me that contrary to Lebowitz’s initial point of view, it doesn’t matter if no one wants to hear from you or me because there is something to be said and sometimes just saying it doesn’t work. Where the intention might get lost is simply in recognizing that independent of the shirt’s articulated biases, they are so good, you’ll probably want one even if you’ve never deigned to delete.

Proof of concept? A pants-less me.

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  • Clara

    but where, oh where do i get these awesome shirts? Have I missed something in the rush? 🙂

  • Danielle

    NEED these shirts in my life. Where can I make this magic happen?

  • Vanessa Correa

    I’ve been over slogan tops for a long time, but the double meaning of the techy phrases shows a level of wit that the average slogan top does not. Love them.

    • Élora

      Couldn’t agree more!

  • Stef

    I’ll never be one to wear satire, sarcasm or my actual sentiments on my literal sleeve/chest/back/head/pant leg or ass. But I don’t think I’ll ever lose my love for band tees.

  • diane

    I believe clothing should speak softly but carry a big schtick.

  • exploring wardrobes

    Love a graphic tee, especially when paired with leather!


  • Those tees are awesome, I love the navy blue one.

    Mafalda ❤

  • maud.schellekens
  • V from The Drastically Blog

    I love how you always succeed at mixing fashion with well thought-out opinions and prose. Well done!

  • Alanna

    Preach! Also, I’m getting one of those shirts ASAP.


  • elisa


  • I still want that Woody Allen shirt so much!!’


  • mywhiteT

    That’s a cute shirt. love the writing that it is written in. mywhiteT.com

  • I love pant-less Leandra! Pants are for babies!

  • Kristin Bungart

    Of course I love those are witty sayings. But I’m pretty found of that
    font too. I want one to wear over my leather leggings. Don’t know if I
    can sport the pantless look as well as you!!



  • jussayin

    one of those lyrics is actually a das racist line…

  • This is so amazing! Love the one that says “I don’t wanna date you, I just wanna copy and paste you”. http://www.LEZU.com

  • Gabi

    Pants-less-ness is next to Godly-ness


    awful clothing designed by awful people, for awful people.