Before today I hadn’t paid the slightest amount of attention to Harry Styles since catching his performance in Chris Nolan‘s Dunkirk, or roughly three and one-third years ago.

He was totally fine in that excellent World War II film, but I have to be blunt and say that Styles seems vaguely appalling in some of the photos in a new Vogue profile, which includes a first-ever cover featuring a dude. Possibly because Anna Wintour was intrigued and excited by photos of Styles in dresses and hoop skirts and whatnot.

Can the “d” word even be used to describe Styles after this? Unless you want “d” to stand for douche? A year ago he was quoted saying that he’s not “just sprinkling in sexual ambiguity to be interesting.” Well, he coulda fooled me.

My first reaction was “okay, artists are expected to test standards and push the envelope, and in this regard Styles is doing the good old X-factor thing or, if you will, trying out a ‘Mothers of Invention in early ’68‘ approach or a ‘David Bowie and Mick Jagger in the early ’70s’ thing…free to explore whatever, not hung up on conventions.”

My second reaction was “Jesus, talk about rotten timing…nobody wants to see Styles in a dress right now…please.”

I’m a staunch, rumblehog-riding metrosexual who’s been to Prague twice for micro-hair-plug surgery and who’s long had an affection for J. Crew cold-weather scarves and Italian suede lace-ups and Beatle boot velcro slip-ons. But with Trump receding, Biden ascending and sensible, left-center practical thinkers starting to push back against wokester tyranny in certain corners of the culture, especially in the immediate wake of severe electoral setbacks for wokester-shithead progressives…nobody wants to see Harry fucking Styles in a dress. Not now, they don’t.

Gene Wilder to Zero Mostel in The Producers: “Max, he’s wearing a dress.”

I have a place in my head for flirting with half-feminine stylings. I have broad shoulders but I’m not a manly man. I worked as a tree surgeon in my early 20s, but I never feigned any kind of rugged machismo. I once called AAA to change a flat tire in Brooklyn, for Chrissake, and the idea of motor oil getting smeared on my hands strikes me as abhorrent. But this is the wrong time in the life of the planet for Styles to be modelling dresses in Vogue. Trust me, it just is.