Friday, January 20, 2006

Chavs: a brief guide

It’s occurred to me that I’ve used the word “chav” a couple of times in this blog. I’m well aware that I have several regular readers from outside these islands who will have no idea what I’m on about. In fact, when I check my stats, it appears that most of my readers are from South America so probably haven’t a clue about any of this at all, let alone care what a chav is. I'll press on though. Education, education, education after all.

More useless even than greenfly, chavs are an abominable form of human underclass that has evolved over the last couple of decades. The word is thought to be derived from the Romany word for a child, chavi. An alternative theory is that it originated in Chatham, Kent and is short for “Chatham Traveller”, a derogatory term for the numerous gypsies living in and around the Medway towns. The culture, and its associated fashions, has spread like a virulent disease and is now known throughout the whole kingdom.

The chav is in part an agglomeration of all waster culture. Their clothing of choice is casual to the point of comical but is drawn from the shell suit craze favoured by Essex man in the 80s. They wear anything with a sports label but have no pretensions to being active in any worthwhile sporting endeavour, except for watching football on widescreen Sky Sports in large 20th Century pubs. Whole chains of sport shops have been developed to cater to the chav’s insatiable desire for anything badged with Adidas, Lacoste and other sundry sports associated labels. These sport shops are usually offering goods at “sale prices” in an effort to kid the aspiring chav that he or she is actually buying something far more expensive than it really is. In summer, the male chav will remove the top of his uniform and tie it round his waist thereby exposing his dish-shaped and hairless, malnourished and tattoo adorned frame.

The predominant clothing colour is white. Tracky bottoms will be tucked into either white or blue socks, a practice that would have caused fusillades of derisory insults regarding the whereabouts of my pushbike when I was a youth because this what you did when you’d forgotten your cycle clips. I would have been called “Spazz” or ”Mong” and have suffered bullying on an immensely humiliating scale. The chav though, is impervious to what non-chavs think.

The whole ensemble will be topped with a baseball cap, again bearing a designer type label. It will be of the large curved peak style and worn at a rakish angle so the chav’s facial jewellery can be viewed. This consists of piercings through eyebrows, ears and tongue, narrowly missing the brain. Jewellery is supplied by the well known West End firm of Elizabeth Duke at Argos. Female chavery demands that the midriff is exposed at all times, regardless of the state of gestation and that all clothing be purchased one size too small. By the way, despite their limited budget, real chavs wouldn’t be seen dead in one of the cut-price clothing chains such as Primark as the clothes don’t bear recognisably expensive looking labels.

There has been a major dalliance with the upmarket West End clothing supplier, Burberry. The Burberry check, a particularly vile beige, sorry "camel", based design, seemed to greatly appeal to the chav. Why is a mystery. It can’t be aspirational; apart from the chav’s total lack of ambition other than to own some loud wheels, I’m sure that the average sink estate wastrel wearing a shell suit tucked into his socks, adorned with a blinding array of nine carat gold ornamentation, swaggering and gobbing its way along Holland Park Avenue is not usually going to be mistaken for the Marquis of Bristol just because he’s wearing a Burberry check baseball cap.

Chavs survive on a diet of cannabis and other proscribed intoxicants augmented by the occasional kebab. The vegetable portion of the diet being provided by the lettuce in Big Macs. Recreational pursuits are legion but the bulk of the chav’s leisure time is devoted to smoking, shouting, sending text messages, scoring drugs, sex and keeping appointments with the Department of Work and Pensions at the Jobcentre Plus. Sadly, the chav female is unusually fecund and will invariably produce offspring at least once a year. It’s a highly matriarchal society, the males having usually deserted their mates soon after procreation.

Chavs are net beneficiaries of the state. They augment their benefits with petty criminality and drug dealing. Benefit fraud is rare as the average chav is incapable of regular paid employment so will rarely make a false social security claim. However, it is thought that if they could apply the same devotion to gainful employment as they do to applying for disability living allowance, they could be capable of quite menial work. Unusually, they are one of the only British cultures to maintain a story-telling tradition. It’s believed that this has become necessary as the chav is more often than not illiterate and that stories based around benefit application forms aid their eventual survival.

A major factor in the chav’s proliferation has been the widespread availability of the “alcopop” style drinks that are presumed to make the females extremely sexually compliant. Alternatively, there’s a theory increasingly gaining favour that the chav male is only attractive to the chav female when she is inebriated. As chavs do not interbreed with other human sub-scultures, restricting the production and sale of cheap alcoholic beverages only to the over 30 sector of the population could eventually force the demise of this laughable biological aberration. We live in hope.

3 Vegetable peelings:

Blogger Tennessee Jed said...

I was one who was in the dark about this term. Thanks for the culture update. I assumed it was just a term like bloke perhaps young bloke. Chavs sound like a hybrid of the punk and hip-hop types.

10:57 am  
Blogger Richard Seamon said...

Hmm...yes and no. I can see where you're coming from but unlike those two fashions, there's no thought involved in chav-ness. Beause they rarely venture away from their particular street corner (if they do it's only in the company of their own kind and to other chav venues) it really is how they perceive the world to be. They are possibly the only positive argument for eugenics.

1:06 pm  
Blogger Sharon J said...

I wonder whether your foreign readers know what a "sink estate" is? Mind you, we know what "trailer parks" are, so perhaps they do. ~Sharon

1:08 pm  

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