Six Years Ago: Haole Spirit

As we approach our 1,200th post, I’m going to start giving some of the early ones an encore in a regular series of reposts from five, six and seven years ago. This one originally ran on this day in 2009, and concerns heyday-era Ivy in unexpected places (or maybe not), as well as the interesting use of the term “Ivy League” in contemporary fashion nomenclature. — CC

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Of the many things from Ivy’s heyday that would seem laughably absurd today, the contents of this post probably top the list.

The 1964 film “Ride the Wild Surf” centers around big wave riding in Hawaii’s Waimea Bay. Pictured above are the three male leads, who’ve just stepped off the plane from California and gone straight to the beach.

That’s right: The mainlander on the left embarked on his surfin’ safari wearing a cream jacket with white pants, necktie and pocket square, and loafers with no socks.

Chase Colton (played by Peter Brown) is quickly nicknamed “Ivy League” by his love interest (Barbara Eden) for looking “so scrubbed and solid and superior.” Colton is pictured above with his less sartorially distinguished surf buddies, played by Tab Hunter and Fabian.

Turns out Colton attends a small private college in Southern California founded by his grandfather. Since sharing the founder’s last name gets him nothing but hazing from the other guys, Colton wants to transfer back east where he thinks he — and his sunbleached hair and deep tan — would be more anonymous.

At the big luau Colton gets two shirts ruined by Eden, then complains that he’s down to his last clean oxford-cloth buttondown. So much for blending in with the locals. — CC

15 Comments on "Six Years Ago: Haole Spirit"

  1. Barbara Eden is welcome to ruin every stitch of clothing I own.

  2. Christian | May 27, 2009 at 4:53 pm |

    Ah, but would you take her over Elizabeth Montgomery?

  3. The clothes we wore everyday in a Virginia public high school circa 1963-1967 (ironed OCBD w/ ties, polished (at least occasionally) wingtips and Weejuns, and often blazers, sport coats or even three-piece suits) would render public school teachers and even administrators laughably overdressed today.

  4. Old School | May 27, 2009 at 9:04 pm |

    Re: Paco’s timely comment:

    That’s one good reason for not taking public school teachers and administrators seriously anymore.

  5. FYI Paco…I AM a public school teacher….I wear a tie nearly every day….so are you saying that I am laughably overdressed? Old School: Are you saying that I shouldn’t be taken seriously because I dress well? I am young and dress more professional than many of the older teachers….
    it is true that some teachers dress unprofessionally in my building with jeans, old washed out polos, sneakers, etc. So are you suggesting that students should take THESE teachers more seriously? Please clarify….

  6. Christian | May 28, 2009 at 1:31 pm |

    I think Paco mistakenly wrote overdressed when he meant underdressed. I believe his point is that students of a generation or two ago looked better than administrators do today.

  7. Oh ok. The dress code really depends on the school building you are in. The administrators in my building where a suit nearly every single day…and most of the male teachers wear ties every day…there are a few of us that wear many “trad” or “ivy” items of clothing (tweed blazers, oxford shirts, etc.). Some are the polyester “modern” types…and some resort to looking like the students! I have seen some teachers in a big city school where I used to work looking like complete bums, including administrators. It really depends on the school and the tone that the higher ups set.

  8. Wear a tie on the plane, regardless of the destination.

  9. It’s interesting. I just watched Endless Summer last week and the travel attire of the main surfers is remarkably preppy.

  10. Mitchell S. | May 28, 2015 at 8:37 am |

    The term “Haole spirit” is an oxymoron. In the native Hawaiian language, Haole means “without breath” because Europeans did not breathe life into their prayers.

    “Malihini (newcomer) spirit,” would be a less contradictory term.

  11. So are we assume that Haole is a derogatory term?

  12. Forgive me, “to assume”

  13. Can we please say “the H word” instead of this …H word.

  14. Haole is derogatory when intended as such, and descriptive when intended as such. Depends on intonation and context.

  15. I wish I we could see their shoes.

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