Home / General / SEK made an experiment!

SEK made an experiment!


SEK went to the grocery store this afternoon sporting a new hipster mustache to see how people reacted to it…

ONE GUY: Props, my brother, you’re brave. Mad love, man. Mad love.

But that’s to be expected, after all, SEK lives in Louisiana. However…

ANOTHER GUY: Dude, I think you missed a spot.

SEK: Did I?

ANOTHER GUY: An important one.

SEK: Shit, I always forget to shave there.

Lest you have any hope for humanity…

RANDOM TEENAGE GIRL: My friend over there thinks that’s hot.

SEK: Thinks what’s hot?


Fine. Have a little hope…

OLD GUY: Son, do you know what that means?

SEK: It’s a hipster —

OLD GUY: You can’t bring that back, son.

SEK: What’s old is new, and —

OLD GUY: Some old is dead.

As SEK was leaving the supermarket, two large men covered in tattoos followed him out. SEK started goose-stepping to his car for fear his social experiment had gotten out of hand. Alas, it had not…

LARGE TATTOOED MAN: Can I just shake your hand, bro?

SEK: I don’t see why not.

LARGE TATTOOED MAN: If more of us were like you, bro, this country wouldn’t even be in this shit.

SEK: I imagine not.

LARGE TATTOOED MAN: Keep fucking the faith, bro.

SEK: I…will?

In case you haven’t figured it out…


That’s right.

I decided to see how people in a Louisiana grocery store would react if I went shopping with a Hitler mustache. I’m sure none of you are shocked to discover that all of the people quoted above were white.

Because everyone else just stared at me.

When I returned home, a friend came to the door and I realized this post would’ve been much better had he arrived an hour earlier, so he could’ve accompanied me and recorded these encounters.

Also — because my friend’s rather muscular — it would’ve been fun to have offered to give that last upstanding citizen my autograph and scribbled my name down in Hebrew, just to see what would have happened.

For some reason, I thought this would make for a very funny post when I came up with it, but now I’m just sad.

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  • So Random Teenaged Girl didn’t answer? Or is that part censored?

    • SEK

      I’m pretty sure I knew which part of me she found attractive, and it wasn’t my sparkling personality…

    • DrS

      That’s part of his Charlie Chaplin mustache experiment.

      • Manta

        Damn, I wanted to make this comment.

        Now I am can only ask which of his movies she liked best.

      • DAS

        Wouldn’t pretending to be Charlie Chaplin involve marrying one of the teenaged girls?

        • Mike Schilling

          Both of them.

    • SEK

      My bad! I just realized that the new backend ate some of my HTML. Her answer’s there now.

      • Aimai

        WEre you not wearing pants? Is that what this means?

        • Julia Grey

          O mi.

          That would certainly distract ME from any kind of facial hair.

          From just about anything, in fact.

        • If your pants cover your facial hair, you’re doing something wrong.

          • Hogan

            Pretty much everything.

    • SEK is yadayadaing us. Jerk.

      • I like what Herr Hilter had to say.
        But I’m not so sure about them Boncentration Bamps.

  • efgoldman

    And we wonder how LA voters keep voting for people like Diaper Dave Vitter and Bobby “Bobby” Jindal.

    • MAJeff

      “Vote for the crook. It’s important.”

    • SEK

      Honestly, in my current doldrums I’m really curious how LA voters kept voting for Jindal.

      • Compare the fascination exerted by Dinesh D’Souza and Thomas Sowell. Southerners love it when one of the coloreds tells them the whites were right all along.

      • njorl

        It’s the Hindu symbol for good fortune that has them confused.

    • SEK could probably win a state legislative race with a few billboards, depending on the district. (Say, Metairie.)

  • MAJeff

    LARGE TATTOOED MAN: Keep fucking the faith, bro.

    “Keep the fucking faith”?

    • SEK

      That and “some old is dead” were the two interesting linguistic nuggets I got out of this little experiment. I love how people talk, versus how writers imagine they do.

      • MAJeff

        I really liked “some old is dead.”

        • Aimai

          Some old is dead is totally Elmore Leonard. Especially with “son” affixed to it.

          • Dr Ronnie James, DO

            Elmore said he spent a lot of time in dive bars, just listening.

            • Mike Schilling

              Not drinking? I call BS.

        • LoriK

          That definitely was the best part.

        • KmCO

          Yeah, actually found that one sort of charming and endearing.

        • Jon H

          Yeah. I like that guy.

        • Loyaldavis

          I totally saw Sam Elliot saying that…

          • calling all toasters

            Time present and time past
            Are both perhaps present in time future,
            And time future contained in time past.
            If all time is eternally present
            All time is unredeemable
            And some old is dead

            I know that was by someone named Eliot….

        • NorthLeft12

          As I am only four years from sixty, I plan on using that more than a few times the rest of my life.

          “some old is dead” sounds like it can be a deep retort to many old/senior citizen comments and barbs. I’ll throw in the “son” at the end if the remark is from a smart alecky kid of the male persuasion.
          How does “hon” sound at the end if it is girl/woman?

      • So time is not a flat circle.

    • Barry Freed

      No, you see faith is like a chicken.

      • Snarki, child of Loki

        I yearn for the day that faith can cross the road without having its motives questioned.

    • KmCO

      I can only imagine that that’s either a Southernism with which I am wholly unfamiliar, or his intended response got garbled to the point of producing that.

      • runsinbackground

        It makes more sense if you imagine the stress being on “faith” rather than “fucking”, which would be the logical place for it if written and punctuated that way. It’s also not a Southernism, or at least people talk that way in Colorado.

        • Manta

          Maybe he meant “keep the fucking faith”?

          • Anonymous

            keep, fucking, the faith
            keep — fucking — the faith

  • Barry Freed

    Lot of love for Charlie Chaplin down there I see.

  • Warren Terra

    The British comedian Richard Herring did a whole show on the subject of the Hitler Mustache (reclaiming it for Charlie Chaplin and Comedy) and racism.

    • Matthew Heath

      He actually wore it for quite a while as research IIRC.

  • Barry Freed

    EK: What’s old is new, and –

    OLD GUY: Some old is dead.

    My initial reaction – before clicking the read more link – was mild disappointment that you didn’t reply “What is dead may never die.”

    • SEK

      Thanks a lot, Barry, now I am too.

    • Malaclypse


      That is not dead which can eternal lie,
      And with strange aeons even death may die.

      would also work.

      • Ian

        No, that would only work for a tentacular handlebar mustache.

  • dp

    Since I live in BR too, do you mind my asking which grocery store you went to, so I can avoid it?

    • SEK

      I’m in Prairieville, so you need not worry. It was the Leblanc’s off Highway 42.

      • dp

        The “Frais Marche”? Those commercials are so annoying.

        And I’m afraid Bayou Manchac doesn’t provide nearly enough of a barrier.

        • SEK

          I’ve actually grown to love that Manchac sign on Airline. It means that wherever urban place I’ve been, I’m about to leave it, and that I’m nearly home.

          I do genuinely love living here, which is why I was so disappointed with the results of this experiment.

          • Trollhattan

            If irony was creeping into their reactions it’s not evident in the telling. Am guessing irony is as popular as the NRDC down dere.

            Anyway, here’s the general theme taken to a whole other level. Am relatively convinced they’re dishing irony with artisan pickles, but one never knows for sure.


          • dp

            I’m glad you like it. I’ll leave you with my clan words: “Summer is coming”!

  • solidcitizen

    Rockin’ the Jordan ‘stache. Brave in Shaq country.

  • Manta

    They should give a representation of “the Producers” near your place, and see how the audience reacts.

  • wengler

    Reaction in Chicago: ‘What’s that? You trying to be a Nazi?’ quizzically perhaps a bit aggressively.

    Reaction in the upper Midwest: No talking, just stares.

    • I’m just grateful the police didn’t arrest him on genocide charges.

    • Jon H

      Reaction in Minneapolis: “Hey, we have this Nazi “reenactor” dinner at a German restaurant in town, you should come by! They’ll love you. The group leader will show you his SS tattoos.”

    • MAJeff

      Reaction in Grand Forks: “Have you been to the Ralph?”

      • Snarki, child of Loki

        Reaction in GOP Headquarters:

        “MEIN FÜHRER!!”

    • jon

      I hate Illinois Nazis.

  • Manta

    Have you considered the possibility that the people who spoke to you were out-hipstering you?

  • My friend over there thinks that’s hot.

    Alex, I’ll take “Things that have never been said to me” for $500…

    • DrS

      In your time as an Air Force pilot?

      Recruiters musta been lying to me.

  • Malaclypse

    Both Keep fucking the faith, bro. and Some old is dead. need to make it to the rotating banner.

  • Ernest Pikeman

    So out of six random people, three were enthusiastic in their support of a, er, Chaplin mustache?


  • Benjamin

    Rich Cohen wore his to Zabar’s.

  • Anonymous

    lost it at “goose-stepping”.

    • SEK

      By which you mean, “got it,” I take it?

      • Anonymous

        “lost it” in the internet tradition of “you laugh, you lose” of which i take it you are aware.

  • Royko

    Via the Way Back Machine:

    Hitler on Hot Or Not

  • KmCO

    Also too: mad love?

    • Aimai

      I have mad love for mad love. I need to be saying this–maybe tomorrow I’ll take it out for a spin.

  • jon

    I eagerly await your incipient election to the state senate, on your platform of changing the state name to Lebensraum. And all the joyous workers, free to work the fields, or else.

    • joel

      We don’t do German in the US. Too hard to spell. We go with the Anglicized term “Manifest Destiny.”

      • stickler

        To be pedantic, Lebensraum is the Germanization of “Manifest Destiny,” since the latter actually came first.

        “The Volga will be our Mississippi River!” There was a lot of admiration in the Nazi leadership for America’s policies toward the Native population.

        • jon

          ‘Share and share alike!’ Another cherished phrase we sent over to the Old World. What, no? Alright then. How about “Steal with both hands”?

          • jon

            Ingrates. We’ll see who finances whose rearmament!

    • For those who remember Schoolhouse Rock, I invite you to sing “Lebensraum” to the tune of “Elbow Room.” It scans perfectly.

  • hickes01

    I had a similar experience when I wore my “Pale and Proud Norwegian American” t-shirt to the Minnesota State Fair.


    The shirt was a big hit with my pale brethren, until a nice, middle-aged white lady told me, “Love your shirt! We white people gotta stick together, pretty soon there will nothing but brown children ’round here”. Then her scary biker husband showed up and I realized the Norwegian flag on my shirt started looking a little Third-Reich-ish when I was scrunched up, sitting down.

    • jon

      That’s how it always is, when things start sliding south on the once virile Aryan race.

    • Coconino

      The worst for me was being in the field with representatives from several developers and their consultants on a particularly political and environmentally sensitive site: One of the consultants went on about how you women need to start “having more babies, especially boy babies, ’cause dontcha know, the Muslims are taking over the world.” It was unpleasant in a horridly spectacular way. I’ve moved away since, but I still hope that karma has gotten him.

  • dexitroboper

    That’s not hipster, this is hipster.

    • Snarki, child of Loki

      Wouldn’t it be more hipster if the ‘stach is off-center?

      • Aimai

        No that’s marx brothers.

        • Chico

          I think you give him one snoop too many.

  • Jon H

    Reminds me of when I lived in Cincinnati, and wore red laces in my black Doc Martins. That’s a white power “symbol”. My rationale was that I don’t respect anything else they espouse, so I wasn’t going to let them dictate my fashion choices.

    Then late one night I found myself at a convenience store or gas station near Dayton. The white guy working there saw my laces and referred to them in an approving tone suggesting it was the white power thing he liked, not the color combo. I played stupid, left, and got new laces.

    • Aimai

      Seriously? that’s awful. I would totally rock red laces with my stodgy old lady walking shoes. Do you think I can undermine this meme all on my own or do you think I’d just get absorbed?

      • Hogan

        Where you live? Neither.

    • jon

      Same thing happened to me. I’d just hitched cross country to an event on a boat on the Brooklyn waterfront. I was wearing my new blue Addidas. I’d loaded them up with some blue and chartreuse argyle laces. I ran into a friend. He took one look at my shoes and said, “what do you think you are, Black?” I kept my shoes on.

  • Tristan

    But what are your feelings on Spider-Man?

  • john
  • Orpho

    Why is someone at the NCAA championship holding up a sign that says Lawyers, Guns, and Money?

  • Harry

    There is a faculty member in the College of Business who wears a Hitler mustache. He also has a pronounced stammer, which just draws more attention to the Hitler thing. I’ve sat on several committees with him, he often gets elected chair. I keep looking around the room and wonder if I am the only one who notices the dude is wearing a f*ucking Hitler mustache. Annoying.

  • agentX

    Having lived in Louisiana for off-and-on portions of my life, the exchanges in the post don’t surprise me at all.

    A friend from French Settlement used to say this about Louisianians
    “Well, there are bright stars, and there are those that are dim”.

    That’s why we keep electing morons, crooks, and liars- well the liars aren’t so bad most of the time. The crooks know which buttons to press.

  • The prophet Nostradumbass

    Did your weird neighbor see the moustaxhe?

  • I think I’m over the whole “Springtime for Hitler” thing. It’s not *that* funny. But Pink Hitler seems relevant enough to share it here.

    • ajay

      Concept: a sequel to “The Producers”, but not funny. Leo and Max’s plan goes awry when their pro-Hitler musical turns out to be a huge success. It sparks a revival of pro-Nazi sentiment in the 1950s US (Wernher von Braun, anti-Communism, etc). The Producers are imprisoned for fraud but released in response to massive protests in their favour. Leo becomes finance minister of the New American Reich. Max makes millions choreographing torchlight rallies on the National Mall. To reinforce his power, he orders the murder of Roger de Bris, a potential rival, along with Carmen Ghia and his production team. Franz Liebkind’s buddies, summoned by pigeon, return triumphant from South America.

      • Manta

        Where is the non-funny part?

    • TribalistMeathead

      It’s not *that* funny.

      Yes, it is. Regardless of whether I’m watching the original movie, the stage version, or the movie of the stage version, I lose it every single time I see the Busby Berkeley number in the shape of a swastika. And don’t tell me “I was just a paper-hanger/No one more obscurer/Got a phone call from the Reichstag/Told me I’d be Fuhrer” isn’t the greatest lyric in history.

  • Mike Schilling

    David Brooks thinks you’re not someone we’d see at the mustache-trimming station at Supercuts.

  • EthanS

    Maybe my expectations of LA are too low. I saw two “decent” responses out of five and was impressed.

    Especially because most people are conflict averse and won’t voice disapproval in such circumstances even if they feel it.

  • The new face of liberal fascism!

  • Woodrowfan

    I think you just gave Jonah Goldberg his first orgasm. “I TOLD YOU THE NAZIS WERE LIBERALS!!!”

  • joe from Lowell

    Scott, Scott, Scott…

    The soul patch goes below your mouth.

  • Anonymous

    Why am I reminded of the song by Sparks?

  • Jackdaw

    Not to burst any bubbles, but I think there is a high likelihood Random Teenage Girl came up and said what she did purely to embarrass her friend who had previously whispered “OMG look at that creepy Hitler guy” or the like.

  • Assistant Professor

    Scott, you are incredibly funny, but I am always afraid that you’re eventually going to get murdered in bizarre and hilarious circumstances. And then I’ll feel guilty because I’m both saddened but also chuckling.

  • Lest you get too proud of yourself…

    SMBC’s “The Mustache”

  • W. Kiernan

    I shave regularly, about once every three or four months, because my beard gets too long and I’ve never been able to trim it where it doesn’t look weird. Sometimes I mess with it, like shaving one side off while leaving the other intact, or leaving a big Fu Manchu mustache, and once I did the Hitler Chaplin thing; it looks really creepy in grey.

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