We're talking about the specific kind of high detachable collar that was especially popular in the 19th century. The collar was always white and was fastened to the dandy's shirt with studs. For some reason none of this was considered gay at all; even though one of the biggest dandies of the time was Oscar Wilde, and he actually was gay. And he probably used man-studs to fasten the collar to his shirt.
"I told you, I like PUSSY."
Anyway, the collars. These things were starched until they were almost bulletproof, and jutted right up into your windpipe. What could possibly go wrong?
How It Could Kill You:
The detachable collar was a quiet, subtle assassin. By cutting off circulation, it could creep up on a man in his drunken sleep and choke him to death when the man's head fell forward. It could also cause asphyxia and an abscess on the brain just by being tight, or in cases of indigestion that lead to the neck swelling it would simply strangle its prey. One very unlucky man at the end of the 1800s was almost guillotined on his collar when he tripped coming out of a street car.
What the Fuck Were They Thinking?
In several European languages--like German, Danish and Dutch--the stiff, detachable collar was playfully referred to as "father killer" (Vatermorder). Incredibly, that catchy name didn't deter people from buying them. The men at the time made some connection between the erectness of the neckline and sexual virility.
We were about to mock this idea as quaint and ridiculous, but then we saw some guys walk by with popped collars, and damned if they didn't each have a girl on their arm. This requires further study.
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