I Always Drank Out Of Pineapples To Convince Others I Was Laid Back, But Then I Found Out About Hawaiian Shirts


Since I can remember, people always knew me as the easygoing guy sipping from a pineapple. From backyard barbecues to boardroom meetings, my peers immediately perceived my nonchalant attitude thanks to my tropical vessel.

But I sometimes found myself wondering if a more conventional way existed to show people how laid back I was. Nothing, I had told myself for so long, expressed chill sensibilities more than my pineapple cup. Well, that all changed when I found out about Hawaiian shirts.

My world had been shattered into pieces. The only aspect of my life that brought me joy had been kicking back while drinking from an open pineapple. A fun and adventurous prop with ample space for refreshments, this was my way of assuring everyone I was on vacation. Now, the reputation I garnered from years of carrying around a pineapple would be for naught.

If my colleagues had found out about Hawaiian shirts before I did, it was only a matter of time before they would cast me out as a fraud. Devastated, I had no one to place blame on but myself. My arrogance had gone unnoticed and festered each passing day at the very hands that carried my pineapple. What was once considered the centerpiece to my nonchalant demeanor was ultimately the same chalice that barred me from seeing the truth.

Ignorance had truly been blissful. Without compromising my cool attitude, it was in my best interest to assure everyone that I had always known about Hawaiian shirts. Before I could put on a believable charade, I scrambled to make sense of these mysterious shirts. Yet, my search for answers only yielded more questions: Was wearing one of these shirts truly an easier method to let people know you were casual? How many buttons should an individual leave undone to show you were approachable? What made a shirt “Hawaiian”?

After conducting extensive research, my worst fears had come to fruition. These imported garments had the versatility and vibrancy to overshadow my laid back appearance. In utter amazement, I simply couldn’t comprehend how a collard shirt could contain such a delicate mixture of floral and undulating patterns. Seeing these shirts left me in a spiraling pit of inadequacy.

My pineapple couldn’t compete with the effortless extravagance Hawaiian shirts displayed, and as a result, I began to overcompensate.

After accessorizing my pineapple with neon-colored twisty straws and tiny beach umbrellas, others had been left puzzled by my garish presentation. Those who had once admired the welcoming nature of my pineapple now silently took note of my cry for help. The time had come for me to reconcile with my greatest adversary. I blended myself an exceptionally strong piña colada and gathered my dearest friends and family. In a declaration of passion, I assured these cherished individuals that my legacy would still be dignified in comparison to the simplicity and accessibility of Hawaiian shirts. No matter how many parrots and palm trees graced the sleeves of those shirts, they could never surpass the pride I felt holding my biodegradable goblet. Nay, not even the timeless Hawaiian shirt sported by Tom Selleck in “Magnum PI” could strip the liberation I felt that day. With my head held high, pineapple in hand, and feet up on an inflatable tube, I let the sea decide my path. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

Kenny Murphy is a writer currently living in Los Angeles. He’s written for Funny Or Die and Mcsweeney’s.

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