This week, on the “(Is It) Good for the Jews?” podcast …
Larry Rosen: When was the last time you bought jeans?
Eric Goldbrener: Last week.
LR: And what’s the process you undergo to buy jeans?
EG: First I went to Macy’s, saw the Levi’s were $70. Then I went to Nordstrom Rack, saw the same pants for $45. Then I walked next door to T.J. Maxx and bought them for $25. Levi’s 517s. They look great, but apparently are made out of wood.
LR: They’re the bulletproof kind. You have to wash them. But let me ask you this: Are they dad jeans?
EG: No way.
LR: Did you get this confirmed?
EG: Hell yeah I did!
LR: By whom?
EG: By chicks! Chicks are looking at me!
LR: (doubtful) Well, I went to the Levi’s store, because I’m too lazy to shop around, tried on these 511s, which I know are cool because my kid wears them, but then this other pair caught my eye.
EG: Boot cut? Roomy legs?
LR: Slim cut.
EG: You’re dreaming.
LR: Hang on. So I grab this other pair, 504s, and I try them on and they’re fantastic. So comfortable I can only assume they’re dad jeans.
EG: And the 511s?
LR: They fit, I can wear them, they’re stylish, but these other ones — too good to be true. Like pajama bottoms. So I ask the girl working, “Are these dad jeans?” and she says, “Yes.”
LR: Confirmed. I thought, “They must be dad jeans because they feel good.”
EG: What are you wearing?
LR: 511s. I got two pairs.
EG: You look good! Those aren’t dad jeans!
LR: I didn’t buy the dad jeans. But here’s the ironic part: When they say dad jeans, they’re talking about those huge jeans people wore in the ’90s. These 511s are tapered and slim, like we used to wear in the ’80s. We used to peg them and roll them up to get this look.
EG: What are you getting at?
LR: She said roomy equals dad jeans.
EG: I don’t need anything roomy. I have no thighs.
LR: The point is: What she’s calling “dad jeans” are jeans that make sense to anyone whose point of jeans reference is the ’90s. We’re actually too old to want dad jeans! What we favor, ’80s jeans, are actually cool jeans.
EG: That’s confusing.
LR: Too old for dad jeans. But not too Jewish for dad jeans.
EG: Come on. You’re reaching now. There are no “Jewish” jeans.
LR: Maybe not, but I saw some pretty gruesome jeans during our time at the Jewish day school.
EG: On the kids?
LR: No. Well, maybe. Sometimes. Mostly on the dads themselves. Occasionally on the moms.
EG: Now you’re just being anti-Semitic.
LR: I will not own that. Shallow, maybe. But anti-Semitic?
EG: I’ll give you shallow. Fine. What was the problem with the jeans at our school? And why should anyone be worried about this? You think Einstein wore skinny jeans? Woody Allen? Have you ever seen Woody Allen in a pair of designer jeans?
LR: I don’t like that picture. Not one bit. When I think of Woody Allen, I think of wide-wale cords.
EG: Consider yourself lucky. Many people think of things much worse when they think of Woody Allen.
LR: You’re not kidding. Look; I understand what you’re saying, that we should look past all manner of jeans — even the high-waisted, baggy Kirkland jeans I’m picturing in my head — to appreciate the genius behind the jeans. But you’ve got to admit, we are not known as a particularly fashion-forward people.
EG: You’ve never been to Israel, have you?
EG: This is very obvious. You go to Israel, it’s like a fashion show. Skinny jeans? You want skinny jeans?
LR: Even on the old guys?
EG: Sometimes even them. I think you need to get to Israel and you’ll learn. We Jews are a fashionable people!
LR: OK, but maybe they should hold a seminar or something for us over here in the States. I mean, sweatpants, jeans from Costco, blazing white New Balance tennis shoes…
EG: What’s wrong with white tennis shoes?
LR: That’s it. I give up.