Thursday, May 18, 2006

First Class, No Class

When did everyone get so damn casual? I know it may have started in the office the day after Thursday long ago, but I’m getting a bit sick of it. And maybe it’s just New York but all of the sudden it seems like everyone has dressed down to a whole new level…

As I waited for the initial boarding call for my flight to Phoenix last week I could not help but notice the attire of my fellow passengers. Now it was an early flight but by no means was it still dark outside kind of early. And of course we would all love to flop around all day in our sweats and slippers, I know they’re comfortable. After all, where do you think the phrases, “oh, it’s nothing, don’t sweat it” and “I’m just going to ‘slip’ into something…” came from?

So as I sat in my jeans, white button-down, and black sports coat (dressed up, but not over the top) I continued to see people dressed as if their bed was somewhere between the security check point and our gate. The bed bugs, as I’ll call them were more often than not women, sporting their distracting duds and an US Weekly tucked under there arm as they searched for a seat to call their living room.

Again, who wouldn’t love to cruise around town in their jammies? But come on, it just ain’t right! And as if dressing for bed wasn’t enough, a few of the guilty even brought their pillow as an accessory. 1) Phone charger, check 2) Toothbrush, check 3) Glow worm, check!

I know airplane seats are not the best, I know they’re not made by Lazy Boy and they’re not stocked with pulsating massagers like the chairs in Brookstone, but deal with it! I don’t need to have your Pottery Barn pillow case wedged between us like the thin wall that makes a “Converted Two Bedroom Apartment” possible. I just don’t!

Now I know New York is probably a little old school when it comes to dressing to impress. After all, we don’t have steering wheels and short walks from the parking lot and back to hide behind all of the time. We’re out there, on display all the time…And I love it.

As if being surrounded by concentrated juicy couture wasn’t bad enough, I landed in what is possibly the most casual city in America, Phoenix, Arizona. The sun is always out, the weather is always beautiful, and people’s legs and feet are always exposed. I had forgotten what it was like to wear flip flops to just about any establishment without batting an eyelash between your designer shades. The line “whoa buddy, are you going straight to the wedding or what?” was the first thing that came out of my buddy’s mouth when he picked me up curbside at Sky Harbor.

The answer, “no, you just never know who you are going to sit next to on a plane.” About 4 years ago my mom sat next to the managing editor of a small men’s magazine called Maxim. They started to chat, they exchanged cards, and the very next summer I was in New York City doing an internship. Now, if she would have been sporting a blankie and rollers, something tells me I would have never landed in this city I love!

Thanks for listening


At 10:02 AM , Blogger Another twentysomething said...

I agree! You can say you "don't care what anyone thinks about you", but when you're out of work and hopeless, don't fret and wonder why no one sees what your mom sees in you. Keep the sweats for mopping your kitchen floor and dress the way you think people should perceive you. You're right, JSG, jobs can come in airplanes, coffee lines and drug stores.

At 11:59 AM , Anonymous Rust said...

Well done! I especially enjoyed reading this while sitting in public wearing my sweats, hoody, and flip flops. Hope all is well.


At 11:46 PM , Blogger Paige Jennifer said...

I haven't owned "sweats" since sixth grade. And I've never once stepped out in public in my jammies. Who are these people???

For the love of God, JSG - use your Super Hero Metrosexual powers and set your generation straight (insert Superman theme song here).

At 9:29 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I know that NYC is the "center of the universe" but you need a little better persepctive with regard to New Yorker's being old school in the dress to impress category!

I've been travelling to the city on business for a long time and have noticed a steady decline. It used to be Friday was biz casual, then it was jean day, then heavy snow days were jean days, then rainy days were jean days...and now...every day can be jean day. There are still many that care about how they look and what kind of impression they make (JSG being one of them!), but way too many people just don't put a moments thought into it.

Too bad...but how is this for perspective? It does make it easier for those that put forth the effort to standout and shine!

At 9:32 AM , Blogger Just Some Guy said...

I could not agree with you more...NYC is still holding on to the nicely pressed fabics and fashions that made it iconic but it's starting to slip...I mean casual Monday's?

Thanks for reading!


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