Justin Peters is my hero. Or whomever at Slate came up with the idea to make Justin Peters try to live as many notoriously silly New York Times Styles section trend stories as possible—wearing a man bun, speaking in Britishisms, getting a bikini wax, blacking out a tooth to imitate a gap—that person is really my hero. (Stand up and claim your due, or hold your peace forever.) But Peters wrote the story and actually lived the trends, and maybe he came up with the idea, too, so either way, he truly is a living media legend. Slate, too, has really outdone themselves in the content department here. Kudos all: You've broken the mold.
As Peters explains in his piece, he doesn't even consider himself trendy, what with his Birkenstocks (yuck!), 10-year-old cell phone (how can you even live like that!?), and Sears shopping habits (no comment). Perusing the New York Times Style section as those of us who do that are wont to do, he tends to feel even less trendy; he gained more weight than was "cool" with Sandy, he probably (we're guessing) has never even had bangs; he had (egad) braces. All this deep thinking gets to some totally superficial questions: Can a man be trendy enough to live Styles? By living Styles, can a man (or woman) become trendy? Peters asks himself in the lead-up to his challenge, "Am I too far gone for Styles to help? Would it be possible, through careful study and dedication, for me to get hip? In the interest of science, I looked at every New York Times trend story published since January and identified the ones that could best be used as instruction guides for fabulous living. My mission: become the trendiest guy in New York City."