[T]hat craving for order may have been what made the preppy world look interesting in the summer of 1980, when a group of glib Ivy Leaguers (including me) put together the book as a tongue-in-cheek guide to one of America's obscure little subcultures.Hey, we were just talking about "The Preppy Handbook" here last week!
Anyway, you might think from that excerpt that the piece would end with a pithy political observation about how today is like 1980. But no:
And now [preppies are] back. It makes sense, I suppose, from a fashion point of view. We just got through the hippie phase and preppy was due to be recycled. The alligator shirts and wood-framed handbags are a pure fashion revival, though, with little reference to the original subculture that spawned them.Maybe sometimes fashion is just fashion, and it doesn't mean a damned thing. And we're not even going to amuse ourselves by reading meaning into it?
That's kind of a new idea, isn't it?
I wonder what that means about what our culture is coming to?