Wednesday, May 13, 2009

The Good, The Bad, The WTF

Dammit. I thought I had found them all. But no. There was one team that wore plaid well before everyone else. In fact, by my count, they wore it almost 40 years before the plaid shirt craze started in Scotland. Dundee FC, the pride of Tayside (not really what they are called) and Bobby McMahon's favorite club (yep), wore this week's abomination back in 1953.

I have to admit that I had my doubts about this shirt actually having existed. Toffs says that the club wore this shirt on a South African tour back in the middle of last century, but the Dundee website makes no mention of what surely would have been a groundbreaking tour on their official website. It wasn't until I did a little digging that I found confirmation, though the colors are a little different (to my eyes). Anyway, without further ado, here it is.

Hmmm. Black, red and teal. What better way to stoke interest in your club abroad, one whose proud history has featured a dark blue kit since the 1880s (regardless of what the badge says above), than to put together these colors in plaid? What kind of branding and marketing genius put it together? I understand the idea of playing to stereotype on the tour, but why not make the plaid in blue, white and maybe a little red?

The answer, if there is one, may lie in historic family colors from the area. Unfortunately, I do not know. I do know that the city's flag and crest are blue and white, so it could not have some from that. If someone has an answer, I'd surely like to hear it.

This shirt does deserve some merit as it is the first (as far as I can tell) to use a plaid pattern in Scotland. But what, really, does that mean? To paraphrase the old joke, first is really no better than second at the Special Olympics. OK, that's harsh on the Special Olympians. I have had some rewarding days volunteering at the Special Olympics. I see no reward in wearing this shirt.

But wait, there's more! In a teaser to a long, upcoming post (or even a series of posts), good ol' BD sent me some pictures of shirts from his closet. Betcha didn't know that Norwish also fell for the plaid craze, did you? Well, you would if you are a Norwich fan of a specific age, I guess. Anyway, East Anglia was a hotbed for the tartan look too, apparently.

But that's not all! It seems that plaids are not dead in the modern day. This week, Celtic released their new European kit for 2009-10. While it's not the shirt that will be plaid, the shorts will be. Please, oh please, let this be the start of a new and wonderful trend.


The Fan's Attic said...

The DFC shirt isn't half bad looking, but only as a shirt. I have my doubts as a jersey on a field.

ü75 said...

Yeah. I couldn't imagine trying to pick this out with peripheral vision while on the pitch.

Matt said...

The Celtic kit will have a plaid stripe on the shoulders as well.

jjf3 said...

Went to the CSC tonight for a beer after work, and I was surprised by the response. 3 of the regulars were there (1 is the lone Scotsman/Rangers fan in the group, and he's dating a Celtic fan), but they all agreed that the "Celtic tartan" on the shorts was great, and the 2 who'd seen the shirt liked it as well.


Steve said...

i actually don't mind the top one too much.