Once upon a time in China, it was commonplace to see people wearing clothes that seemed "out of place,"– things that would be common back home, but were so 'not common' as to stand out mightily here.
Since contemporary Chinese fashion (especially for young people) is pretty much the same as it is anywhere else, that sense of 'why is that person wearing THAT?' feeling is quite rare these days.
But I had one today, which is what got me thinking. I didn't just notice the 'out of place' attire, but also noticed that it was unusual to notice it.
So, here's what happened. I was in the big mall at Xizhimen and spotted a young man wearing a green 'letter jacket,' a uniquely American form of clothing worn by high school and collegiate athletes to identify their sporting achievements. To see one being worn by a Chinese guy in Beijing definitely caused me to do a double take, which in this case meant turning around to try and catch a glimpse of the name of the school or city.
What I saw surprised me even more! It said ROSEAU. Roseau? Can that be right? For those of you who don't know, Roseau is a very small town in Minnesota, just minutes from the Canadian border.
Why in the world a Chinese kid was wearing a Roseau, MN letter jacket in Beijing I'll never know.