Jake Nyberg fights an ism, an appearance-based prejudice that he finds hurtful and worthy of exploration and condemnation.
Is he fat? Black? Disabled? Visibly impoverished? Flamboyantly gay?
No. Jake Nyberg has a mullet.
He's intentionally trimmed his mop to recall those dark days of the 1980s, when manliness was measured by the volume of party-in-the-back. Nyberg uses product to spike up the top, and it's admittedly not full '80s plumage, but it looks pretty badass. A writer/director and amateur sociologist, he's at the Galleria on a mission: to see how shoppers and store clerks treat him and his horrible head of hair.
It's been just shy of three weeks since Nyberg cut his hair into a mullet. He's been documenting his experiment at www.mulletlikeme.com, a take-off on Black Like Me, a white journalist's account of darkening his skin and traveling through the American South in 1959. Just as John Howard Griffin attempted to expose racism, Nyberg hopes to expose "mulletism"—the mistreatment of mulleted Americans based on their hairstyle.
You liberals want me to tolerate people like this. But if you force us to treat the mulleted as if they weren't mouth-breathers, next the guys with popped collars and people with orange spray-on tans and folks with overpriced brand insignia emblazoned across the asses of their sweat pants will want to be treated just as if they aren't insufferable douchebags. No thank you. I will not sacrifice my contempt for the mullet. We've made too many compromises already; too many retreats. The mulleted and the bell-bottoms and the post-ironic hipster T-shirts invade our space and we fall back. They assimilate entire shopping centers and we fall back to the only remaining Eddie Bauer outlet. Not again. The line must be drawn here! This far, no further! And *I* will make them pay for that haircut.
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