I don't watch a lot of awards shows on television. But occasionally I tune in just to see what outlandish clothing styles have come about. The Grammys, the Oscars, the Emmys and a host of country music awards shows can cause you to stare or even downright gawk at the attire.

Actually, I think sometimes the awards that will be presented are secondary to the fashion statements.

I think it was the last showing of the Grammys that caused me to gawk the most. For some of the females in attendance, it was like they got up that morning and said something like, "I think I'll get half naked and go uptown."

Now obviously a lot of these clothes are designed for these events and nothing else. In any other venue they are totally non-functional, and I've seen some that could not pass the fire marshal's inspection. Not that they didn't have enough exits, it just looked like they would draw a flame from two blocks away.

Some of this attire is so non-functional in the conventional sense that if someone dropped an earring, it would just have to stay there unless someone else picked it up. Some of that clothing is not conducive to bending over, squatting or even sitting.

Wednesday evening on the Country Music Association Awards, I noticed that a new shirt style now is to wear your sleeves so long that only the last joints of your fingers stick out. Of course the banjo pickers and steel guitar players couldn't dress like this for obvious reasons.

I've got to wonder who came up with that idea. Did someone in the fashion business get up one morning and asked something like, "What part of absurdity have we not covered?" Or could it have been that some sewing company received errant specifications and that's how these shirts were shipped?

I can hear some clothes designer at a board meeting saying: "I can make people believe this is the way it ought to be. We'll pay a couple of celebrities to wear these things to some big functions, and we're home free. Not only will we cover the wastes, but we'll get orders for them."

And surely this can be done. I mean if you can convince some people that it is stylish to wear their trousers beneath their butts, then it would seem to be a piece of cake to sell sleeves six inches too long.

I guess my cynicism stems from the fact that I'm so basic when it comes to clothes. As far as I'm concerned, khaki pants, blue shirts and loafers are Biblical. I know they didn't wear these kinds of clothes back in those days but maybe it was because of a misprint. Maybe it was meant to say something like "the meek shall inherit the shirts." But likewise, I suppose someone will argue that fig leaves also are Biblical.

I could never feel comfortable wearing some of the stuff these people wear. I've seen some of the male stars wearing britches so baggy that on a real cold morning they could take three steps before the legs on those things moved.

I guess I am most amazed when someone on one of these awards shows walks up on stage and is dressed normally. By normal, I mean an oxford style shirt as opposed to one made out of some kind of silky stuff that looks like it came from the prop room on the set of "Mutiny on the Bounty." I only know two places you can go dressed like a pirate -- a costume party or an awards show.

Maybe I'm too critical on this issue or maybe it's all about my tendency to consider worst-case scenarios. So when it comes to those long sleeves with just the tips of your fingers hanging out, what are they going to look like after you've eaten a chili dog?

Dwain Walden is editor/publisher of The Moultrie Observer, 985-4545. E-mail: drain.walden@gaflnews.com.

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