Multiple meanings from a t-shirt seen at the Metropolitan Museum of Art


We saw this guy, below left, with the unusual t-shirt in the modern art galleries at the Metropolitan Museum of Art last weekend. While looking up this phrase, we found several meanings, the first of which is: “The philosophical viewpoint which advocates the lowering of standards earlier in the process of courtship rather than later, believing it to be more efficient and ultimately more satisfying in the long run.” If that’s the case, then why would this guy’s girlfriend sitting next to him ever let him go out with her in public wearing that shirt?

A second reference we found, however, referred to an army unit’s “Go Ugly Early” motto, used by the 662 Squadron (AAC), who flew Apache helicopters over war-ravaged Afghanistan (see below, top right).

Without having seen the front of this guy’s shirt, however, I would make the assumption that our 3rd reference found would most likely be the right one, since the font of the letters seems an exact match to the sweatshirt in the bottom right: “Go Ugly Early was a phrase used during Prohibition by Harry’s Chocolate Shop, a bar in West Lafayette, Indiana, which called itself a chocolate shop to avoid being known as a bar. Their slogan “Go Ugly Early” was the opposite of its real meaning “come pretty late.”

Harry's Chocolate Shop, a bar with the slogan Go Ugly Early

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