The Decline and Fall of Looking Spiffy

barry currin, beaverdamusa.comI miss getting dressed up. More specifically, I miss the need to get dressed up.

What has happened to us? Not too many years ago, in lots of situations ladies wore dresses, or at least slacks and a blouse, and men wore ties and jackets. We’re not talking back in the dark ages, either. I wore a tie to work. I wore a tie to church. If we were going out to dinner somewhere nice, I wore a suit. It was part of the experience.

Now, I hardly ever even wear a dress shirt, regardless of the situation. The only time I put on a suit is for a funeral, and truthfully I’m wondering how long that will last. How do necktie makers even manage to earn a living? What about companies that make stockings? There cannot be enough cliché bank robbers out there to keep those factories afloat.

I blame casual Friday for the decline and fall of looking spiffy. I never liked the idea of casual Friday, anyway. At the time, I worked in a financial institution, and Friday was the busiest day. I always thought the customers who came in on Fridays deserved to see everybody all cleaned up as much as the customers who came earlier in the week. But, I participated, nevertheless. My neck thanked me, but it took a long time for it to feel natural.

Of course, you know how the story progressed. it didn’t take long until casual Friday leeched over onto the other days of the week. Pretty soon, poof! People are showing up in jeans, flip-flops, T-shirts with unicorns be-dazzled on the front, parachute pants, you name it.

I’m not a felon when it comes to the crime of dressing down, but I have to admit that I bear some guilt. I wear the good ol’ golf shirt to church, khaki pants and docksides without socks. Yes, it’s comfortable, and no, I don’t think it matters to God that my ankles are showing. But, still I wish we would do better.

In my circles, no restaurant requires a jacket and/or tie anymore. I believe this one bothers me the most. When I was younger, we would get all dressed up on Saturday night to go out for a fancy dinner. Doing so made it a little more dignified. I enjoyed going to a little trouble to go out on the town. But I don’t do that anymore, and no one else does either. The other night we revisited one of those places where I once would’ve been expected to wear a tie, and there sat a customer in her Duck Dynasty T-shirt.

I’m sorry, but if my entrée is drizzled with something called a reduction, I do not want to see Phil Robertson’s picture on your shirt, regardless of how happy, happy, happy the two of you are. And, I never will.

I even think women are bigger offenders than men are. The most egregious offense I have noticed with the cooler temperatures is women wearing tights as pants, without even a long shirt to cover their derriere. And the harder those tights have to work to keep everything covered, the thinner they get. Black becomes gray and more transparent as it stretches, ladies. Bear that in mind.

I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the hopefully-passing fad of wearing pajamas out in public. Chartreuse, orange, tiger stripes, Disney characters. You don’t have to go far to see every color of the rainbow. Where are those mothers who used to would’ve said, “What if you’re in an accident?”

I guess they’re on Pinterest looking for a way to be-dazzle a T-shirt for date night.

About Barry Currin

Barry tries to be funny and poignant, and he's usually satisfied when he succeeds with one or the other. (Being both is awesome. And sometimes that happens.) Email him:

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