T-Shirt of the Week: WEEK 25

tsotw-button-1.jpgSome people believe you can tell a lot about a person by the shoes they wear. I believe you can tell more about a person by the t-shirts they have worn. This is the story of my life, as told by the t-shirts I have worn.

WEEK 25: Well…it’s been a while since the last installment of T-Shirt of the Week, but to be quite honest, I simply needed to take a break for a while. To all the people who complained during the hiatus, I apologize if in some way I made your life miserable these last few months. You can all stop bitching and complaining now, because TSOTW is back (at least until I get burned out again).

This week’s installment features several shirts from the Bryan Weaver Collection. These are not the first shirts that are connected to Bryan (see Week 10), but these are all shirts that are featured prominently in the chapter of my life entitled “That Annoying Weezer Kid.”

Bryan and I first met in high school—I was a senior and he was freshman, and he was an annoying pain in the ass. I started calling him Weezer, which was a cross between his last name, Weaver, and weasel, which was what he was. And even though he drove me up the wall back in high school—and still drives me up the wall—we managed to become friends and that friendship has now lasted 22 years.

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Back around 1991, Bryan moved to Washington D.C. to attend Howard University. It takes a special kind of white boy to attend a nearly all-black college in our nation’s capital, and Bryan was that white boy. The two most important things to know about him are that he is both politically active and passionate, and he has a warped sense of humor. This first shirt, the “George Bush. Anywhere But America Tour” t-shirt was a gift from Bryan, and it speaks of his sense of humor. Anyone who remembers the first President Bush, may recall that he spent a lot of time worrying about what was going on in other countries, and not enough time on domestic policies. (Like father like son.) Back in the early 1990s, wearing this shirt got me into a lot of trouble with people who liked Bush. “Is that some kind of fucking joke?” they would say. I would respond, “No, this a shirt. The joke is our president.”

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While living in D.C., Bryan became even more politically active than he was when we were kids. He worked for the late Senator Paul Wellstone, and then for the Democratic National Committee, where he became involved in Bill Clinton’s 1992 campaign. I can’t quite remember the origin of this “Dope Hemp” shirt, but somehow Bryan was involved in it. In case some of you don’t get the joke—which would mean you’re historically illiterate—Bob Dole and Jack Kemp were the Republican candidates for president and vice president back in 1996.

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Next, we have this “Hoops Sagrado” shirt. Hoops Sagrado is the non-profit organization Bryan founded and continues to run. Here is how the website describes the organization: “Hoops Sagrado is a Washington, D.C.-based youth leadership and development nonprofit organization that gives at-risk youth from the D.C.-area a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to spend a month during the summer in the highlands of Guatemala learning another language and culture, teaching their Mayan indigenous peers basketball skills, developing their sense of self, and gaining a new perspective on life.

“Using the game of basketball as the common thread, the D.C. youth volunteers and their Guatemalan counterparts are able to not only share their love of the game, but the D.C youth learn how to communicate with, understand, and appreciate another way of life, which while different, shares many of the same challenges they face at home—racism, poverty, broken homes, lack of opportunities and social marginalization.”

I have a ton of stories about Bryan, but few of them compare to what he has done with Hoops Sagrado. When I think of the annoying pain-in-the-ass kid he was twenty-two years ago, I am incredibly proud of him and what he has done with his life (even though he can still be an annoying pain-in-the-ass).

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Finally, we have a very special shirt, worn by a very special young man. This is Sebastian, Bryan’s son. He is wearing a shirt that says “Vote Fucker,” and it was given to him by his demented godfather (that would be me). Since there is a good chance I will never have children of my own, Bryan and his wife Maria have been kind enough to give me the opportunity to warp the minds of their children, Sebastian and Maya. My good friend Kevin and his lady Kristen have also given me the opportunity to corrupt their children, Chloe and Ian, by having me be godfather to them as well. I sincerely appreciate it, and hope that I do a good job.

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2 Responses to “T-Shirt of the Week: WEEK 25”

  1. iowan Says:

    i live for these blogs, especially t-shirt of the week. documenting history through clothing. makes me think of all the special t-shirts i’ve kept over the years and why. thank you for this, david.

  2. iowan Says:

    oh… p.s.
    sebastian is absolutely adorable!

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