It's been over ten weeks since I last had to don my old uniform. While I never minded having to wear a suit and tie everyday, I have to say that I don't really miss it either. I've never quite understood why we as a society decided that we had to be so uncomfortable in order to portray professionalism. I started tying a piece of cloth around my neck in the first grade and did so just about every day for the next 10 years. After a brief respite in the form of a public high school and then college, I was right back to dressing to conform every day. And I swear that I am more productive when I get to wear jeans and a tee shirt, but I've never had a gig like that. Till now.
Over the last ten weeks of funemployment, I've found that I have settled in to a new uniform. And this one is a million times more comfortable. Sure, the productivity I worry about now is sending resumes and playing PlayStation rather than meeting deadlines and impressing clients, but I'm just playing the hand I was dealt.
The new uniform started with a pair of black Starter shorts with grey and white piping that I've had for a few years now. They got a lot of use around the house, so I went to a sale at Old Navy and picked up a pair of grey shorts with black and white stripes on them. When I was folding both pairs next to each other it made me think about my basketball uniform in high school. They were simple blue and white, white with blue trim at home and blue with... oh, the hell with it. Why not just show you:
I would love to have shown you an "action shot" of me on the court, but I led the New Jersey Parochial B League in fouls and technical fouls that year, so, I spent a whole lot of time right there on the bench.(I am #15, fist in the air as we kick the shit out of the School for the Deaf, not joking) Please notice that I am wearing Jordans which costs me a few weeks work. Anyway, back to my new uniform.
You don't realize just how much time you spend at work, until you don't have to maintain your work wardrobe any longer. No more trips to the dry cleaners, no more standing in the closet looking for that one tie that really goes with this shirt. No more trying to put on your cufflinks in the dark so you don't wake your wife, and definitely no more spit polishing your wingtips. Now-a-days I just slip in to my grey or black uniform and go about my bid'ness. I've almost forgotten what it feels like to be all constricted around the neck, wrists and waist. Almost.
Those Catholic school memories linger a lot longer than the work ones.