I can feel my readers’ anger now. The comments will say ‘Vidins needs to get off his ivory clothes horse and start dressing for the real world’ and ‘So now Vidins has become a (self appointed) office clothing Nazi now’. Well let me say that yes, I intend to ruffle a few un-starched collars with this blog entry. That’s right, I am lamenting in the decline of men’s’ office attire. That’s right, both the single and spoken for man ought to lend me an ear.
Being the man about town that I am, I spend a lot of time in many offices, baths and men’s-only saunas. And I am hearing (and seeing) a lot of ‘modern’ gents complain about even the most basic standards of office dress.
So why is it important for the modern, inner city gent to dress as best he can for the office? Why should he take extra pride in his appearance, his foot-wear, his grooming and his after-shave? Is it really important to wear clean, sturdy supports every day? Well gents, it is important because it is all about the ladies. Or the gents, if that’s the type of sauce you prefer on your hot-dog.
Many offices now-days have terrible things like ‘uniform policies’ or ‘dress standards’, all of which seem to ensure the gents in the office do their best to just meet these minimum, often sub-standard benchmarks. Am I the only one sick of these communists trying to impose uniformity on us all? All too often the catch cry is ‘Oh I don’t face the customer so why do I have to dress professionally?’ Well gents, ask yourself – when you are in your offices, who do you want looking back at you in the mirror? Some ill-kept employee with an unstarched collar or train-tracked pants? Or would you prefer to look at a professional, well matched and well dressed asset to your business?
In the modern office, everyone is on show. Why would you want to follow the herd and dress like all the other drones? One would expect that the enterprising, ambitious gent would want to stand out from the crowd. For those amongst us that have little discernable talent for actual work, dressing for success will often result in a victory of style over substance (however, that is a topic for another day!). By dressing up, rather then dressing down, the modern gent will ensure that his name is at the top of the promotion list!
So now, how is the modern man meant to dress for the office? What should the modern gent employ to gain the edge in the dress department? Let’s start from the top and work our way down, starting with the head.
Hat. The modern gent simply must wear an appropriate hat. All too often I am seeing even office men wearing American-styled baseball hats or some ethnic headgear. I simply can not understand why one would want to stick out like some loud seppo or an Osama bin Laden look-alike! Not only does an appropriate hat shield your head, it also provides that extra edge men so long for.
Hair. Gents, your hair is your crowning glory. Ensure that you have it neatly trimmed, short back and sides. A little styling goes a long way. Forget these outlandish styles with side-burns and under-cuts! It is unfathomable how some men chose to wear their hair like a common hobo.
Facial hair. All on or all off. There is no in-between. For the up-and-coming gent, keep yourself clean at all times. A beard or moustache is only suited to the well-established and senior gent in the office. Gents, never let yourself be seen in the office sprouting (and I can not bear to even mention it) ‘styled stubble’! You would not buy a dirty car or bed a bearded woman, why would anyone want to promote a Neanderthal that could not handle a razor!
Shirt and collar. Now I am partially speaking to the wives and mothers here. This is where you come in. Ladies, ensure that when you are doing your man’s laundry that you give his collar that extra bit of starch. Why, you should be able to iron a tablecloth on a well-starched collar. No man feels confident in a sloppy, ill-shaped collar. Wives, you should not tolerate a wobbly collar or a ‘wobbly performance’ from your man!! Mothers, similarly – you want your boy to catch the best fish in the pond, not some sloppy seconds! You should know yourself what attracts a lady. Nothing speaks of confidence then a well – starched collar! One way you can help your man to the top is by ensuring he looks the part!
Similarly with your shirt, gents (and again, I am speaking to the lady in your life, whether it be your wife or mother), ensure that it is well fitting. Your neck should not be rolling out of it like some type of over-filled slurpee. The fit needs to ensure that you are emphasising your good points and not pointing towards an ill-shapen chest or stomach.
Tie. Gents, I am simply flabbergasted by the lack of ties worn in these modern times. A tie shows those around you that you are ‘here for business’. Ensure that your tie is done up in the classic double Windsor. Nothing says ‘I’m from a state school’ more then a single Windsor. If you want to be in the money, dress like the money. Ensure that your tie goes right from your top button down to the top of your belt button. The style of your tie, too, is of vital importance. The tie ought to convey meaning. Wear red if you are going into a challenging meeting and you need to establish dominance. Wear light blue if you are building relationships. Novelty ties, however funny, are, under no situations, appropriate for the modern gentleman. College, team or country ties may be appropriate, depending on the forum.
Pants. Gentlemen, nothing says ‘I have no career aspirations in this firm’ then a pair of pants with train tracks in them. ‘Train tracks’ you ask?. When you have two or more pleats per leg, you have train tracks. It tells those around you that your wife or mother has no confidence in herself, or you. Should they not be able to fulfil this simple task of ironing, you may be best advised to either find someone who can or get your pants ironed professionally.
Lollybags. Would you put a diamond ring in a hessian sack? Would you park your car in a garage that leaked? Would you even consider stuffing your fine crystal in with your knives and forks? Of course not! So why would you treat Mr Winkie and the boys with a lack of respect? Men, you need to house your spanner in a suitable, well supported pair of jocks. I am aghast at the amount of men that think it is appropriate to allow their elephant trunk to swing around in a pair of boxer shorts. It disgusts me to think about it. Just as a knowing girl supports her twins, you too ought to support your meat and two vege.
Belt. Your belt shows the world that you have the whole package together. Gents, your belt-buckle ought to instil respect in your peers and fear in your foes. It should portray that you have power and confidence. Your belt-strap too ought to show your command over the environment. Do NOT have faux-leather or these ‘material’ straps that are in vouge. You want a belt strap of crocodile, wild buffalo or bonded python skin. Something that tells the world that you are here for business.
Shoes. Your shoes, too, ought to compliment your belt. A man’s shoes demonstrate that he can look after himself, he is particular to details and that he is prepared to go the distance. A handsome shine is mandatory for the well-dressed office gent. Find yourself a good shoe-shine and ensure that you are the pride of the office. A sturdy pair of leather Australian – made shoes or boots show pride and nationalism, which is sadly lacking in today’s modern offices. Should you have sons, making them shine your shoes before breakfast is a wonderful way to both maintain dominance in your household and show them that if they don’t study hard at school, they could be shining shoes for a ‘living’ when they have grown up. My word, nothing makes a boy study harder then the prospect of winning the approval of his father!
Before closing, I need to mention this trend of ‘casual Friday’ that is all too popular in the modern office. As I understand, this is an opportunity to dress as if one is going to a public bar or a circus in the office. I for one am disgusted by this trend. Why, do you expect ‘casual’ service from your police force on a Friday? How about ‘casual judgement day’ down at the courthouse? Does ‘casual operation day’ sit well with you, if you were in hospital? Of course not! I expect professionalism from those around me regardless of the day. This ‘casual Friday’ trend is nothing more then an excuse to further dumb down your office and justify a lazy attitude towards work. Gentlemen, buck this destructive trend. Why, our great nation did not become great by having a lax approach to work one day a week! You have at least 104 days per year to dress in the casual style, more if you are inclined to take holidays. Men, do not reduce yourself to this lazy, casual approach to dressing. By all means, dress like a beatnik or hobo on your own time, not on company time!
Gentlemen, dressing up for the office ought not to be a chore. It is an opportunity to demonstrate your confidence, your ability. By dressing like a proper man you tell your peers and superiors that you have it together, you have the love of a good woman, or, if you are single, you are from a respectable home. In the modern office, no man should aspire to look like they have just stepped out of a public school and into the office! By dressing and rising to the occasion, you also give your inferiors a standard to aspire to and to look up too. Why, not a day goes by where one of the juniors or clerks thanks me for giving them inspiration to dress in a more appropriate manner. This should give the modern office man a sense of pride and accomplishment, to see those around him be lifted by his presence!
I trust that I have inspired you to rise to the occasion in your office. Do not be constrained by these communist-inspired ‘standards of dress’ which do nothing but turn men into compliant buffoons. Instead, ensure that you forge ahead, being the best you can, presenting the best self you can. Rise to the occasion. Yes, you will have reds around you trying to bring you down. These so called ‘class warriors’ are nothing but spent socialists trying to impose their mediocrity upon you and the aspiration around you.
Gentlemen, rise to the occasion!