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The Zak Zone

June 28, 2012

Anyone who even vaguely knows me could tell you with 100-percent certainty that fashion sense is not exactly my forté — and that is probably even putting it nicely.

Sandals with socks made my family cringe when I was a teenager, yet I donned them regardless of their opinions.

Even earlier — in my pre-teen years — I owned a pair of shoes that were a color I had never seen before. They were a mix between red and purple — a color I belovingly called "cherry cola."

To most, again including many of my family members, these shoes were again considered hideous. To me, they were fashionable because I liked them, and that was reason enough to wear them and to love them.

The list of my personal fashion blunders goes on and on.

From wearing those knee-high soccer socks with shorts when I wasn't playing sports — back before that was actually in style — to wearing mismatched dress socks to church for lack of being able to find the respective mates.

From wearing my bandana 2-Pac style with the knot tied in front — a look that didn't work nearly as well for me as it did for him — to my still-running belief that wearing a hoodie with dress pants "doesn't look that bad," the list of my own fashion faux pas is expanding just about as rapidly as the universe.

If you haven't already noticed, my wardrobe when I'm working is pretty consistent and pretty safe: Either light or dark khakis and a collared shirt.

Four days a week, this is the attire you will find me proudly donning on the sidelines or in the stands at your favorite local team's games.

It is safe, because there is apparently no anti-match to the color khaki. It is the fashion-deprived person's dream come true.

The strange thing is, I am actually not horrible at feng shui-ish things.

I have a pretty good eye for what looks good and what doesn't, for what colors look OK together and what ones don't.

So, maybe what it all comes down to is the lack of caring to adapt to the norms of those fashionistas around me.

Sporting my waterproof camo boots with silver gym shorts when I went grocery shopping while living in Pittsburgh used to draw crazy stares from the locals.

Around here, it's rare for anyone to even turn a crooked eye at that particular wardrobe. But I've never adjusted my style simply because those around me expect me to — unless, that is, I'm doing so for a good cause.

Last Saturday, I attended the opening game of the Rossiter Miners' third-annual Breast Cancer Awareness tournament and broke one of my longstanding personal fashion preferences: Never wear pink.

Of course growing up, it wasn't cool for boys to wear pink.

Times have changed, though, and with the increasing number of people whose lives have been directly affected by the negative effects of breast cancer, pink is now perfectly acceptable wardrobe for guys — and rightfully so.

Ten players and one manager suited up in soft pink, 15772-stamped jerseys.

Umpires sported pink sweat bands to complement their powder blues.

And one local sports writer sported the only pink he had: An old, sleeveless pink church softball jersey (complemented by a white tee beneath and blue/white plaid shorts to round out the completely fashion-sense-lacking ensemble).

For at least one weekend, and for a great cause, the town of Rossiter and so many of its beloved supporters put on their pinkest of pinks and came out to support both the team it loves and the cause put on by Walker's Warriors Relay for Life team.

If you missed the tournament last weekend, I highly recommend keeping an eye out for the dates of next year's event.

Not only were the fund-raisers and concessions profits going to a great cause, the baseball action was great — with Rossiter sweeping a four-game slate including a come-from-behind win in the completion of a suspended game against NAPA of DuBois.

And even if you weren't there for the baseball, the entertainment coming from the announcers' booth in the pavilion — courtesy of "Action Adam" Brink and Dustin "Fast Frosty" Guidash — was well worth the price of admission.

This local sports writer even got a shoutout over the loud speaker for chasing down a foul ball across the road.

The small town of Rossiter put on a big show last weekend, and all who were in attendance were treated to the right of being a part of the deal.

So many put their own fashion preferences aside and sported the pinkest attire they could find.

The phrase of the weekend — one I heard more than once — was "real men wear pink."

And while I don't claim to be a fashion expert, one rule I've learned very well is even if your wardrobe makes you look foolish — like wearing blue/white plaid with pink — some things are definitely worth it.

Thank you Rossiter for accepting my poor fashion sense for one day, at least. I'm already looking forward to the fourth-annual next year.

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