By Steven Roberts
Traditional glasses aren't viewed as something "cool." If years of consuming pop-culture have taught us anything, it's that glasses are worn by the socially awkward, the inept: dweebs, dorks and nerds!
While spectacles are worn by people with less-than-perfect vision who are willing to deal with ridicule in order to see well, the cool and beautiful are willing to sacrifice bumping into a small child or two for the sake of vanity. A startling trend has emerged, however: Rappers are wearing glasses.
Rappers are known for being boisterous, braggadocios and badass — they can't walk around looking like Lewis and Gilbert from "Revenge of the Nerds," can they? Sure, artists like DMC and E-40 have worn glasses throughout the years, but they had their own individual style. DMC had Cazal frames, a gold dookie-rope chain and a leather jacket, and E-40 makes up words that sound silly at first, but ultimately catch on and everyone says them.
Recently we've seen photos of Jay-Z, Common, Pharrell Williams, Jermaine Dupri and, most notably, Kanye West wearing glasses. West promoted 808s & Heartbreak dressed in a grey, Pee-wee Herman-esque suit and eyeglasses. The Jeremy Scott sunglasses with blinds caught on like wildfire, but could the same be said for eyeglasses?
In addition to 'Ye, Jay-Z has recently been spotted at Knicks and Nets games rocking a new 'do and his own pair of black-rimmed glasses — will this trend catch on? Or is it simply a sign of the times where intelligence, creativity and a DIY work ethic set the standard for cultural progression? Hey, what better way to show that you're smart than a pair of glasses?
Check out our gallery of rappers in all their nerdy glory here.