October 06, 2010
If you're a regular on NBA message boards, you've likely seen this photo by now.
You've likely wondered if it was some sort of Photoshop work, or an honest mistake. Or, if you're daft, you've wondered if Cleveland Cavaliers coach Byron Scott was an insufferable racist, bent on pushing his dangerous beliefs through his choice in tie-wear.
Byron Scott is not an insufferable racist. He just happened to choose a tie, on last week's media day, that featured a pattern that somewhat (OK, a pattern that exactly) resembled a swastika. And I'm terrible on Photoshop, so I haven't revised this photo in the slightest, outside of a little sharpening.
Now, swastikas have meant quite a few things throughout the years, and it wasn't until the 1930s that they began to represent something quite unholy.
That said, it's a tie. There are about 27 patterns in it, and if you ignore the 26 others and focus on a single version, well ... yeah, that's a swastika. There's a couple of them, in fact. But it's just a random function of a rather lame tie pattern. The overwhelming lesson here? Go simple, with your tie patterns.
Poor Byron. The whole episode would leave me wanting to wear nothing but a series of turtlenecks for the entire season, though I submit that this is more a function of my mod leanings than anything else.
Of course, the NBA just banned turtlenecks. They haven't said anything about swastika ties, though.