Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Puttin' on the Ritz

By now we've all had a good laugh over the letter to editor taking Oshkosh to task for what we wear when going out to eat.  Being a Pittsburgher--and not a "local"--the letter's author must not be aware that Supper Club doesn't exactly equal "fine dining".  Although, I have been to a few of the fancier restaurants in this area and still seen T-shirts, jeans and shorts during the summer.

It's probably a good thing that the letter-writer didn't have to attend a court hearing while in Winnebago County--he really would have been taking us to task then.  As someone who is in a courtroom on a regular basis, it shocks me what people consider "proper attire" for the proceedings.  Nothing tells a judge that you are taking your most recent drunk driving arrest seriously like wearing a Bacardi Rum or Jack Daniels t-shirt to your sentencing hearing.  My other favorite is when people wear Packers jerseys or sweatshirts to court.  And don't get me started with the folks that can't take out their multiple facial piercings to testify on the witness stand.

It's also a good thing that Mr. Letter-to-the-Editor didn't conduct any job interviews while he was here.  The tie racks must have been pulled from the men's sections at all area department stores over the past few years.  How else to explain the belief that showing up with an open collar is somehow acceptable?  Belts without gaudy buckles and dress shoes that don't double as skating shoes are apparently unavailable to today's recent college graduates as well.

With the US Open returning to Merion Golf Club this week, a lot of focus has been on the history of the event at that venue.  It's cool to see Bobby Jones playing golf in a dress shirt and tie in 1930.  And in the photos of Ben Hogan winning there in 1950 you see most of the fans have come to the course wearing shirts and ties.  I hope to someday soon travel to Scotland and play some of the historic courses over there--and one of the things the guide books make very clear to American visitors is that you MUST wear a COAT AND TIE to be admitted into the clubhouse--even if you just want to use the bathroom.

Is lack of proper attire for social and public settings as grave a threat to society as the entitlement attitude of today's younger generations?  No.  But it does exemplify the lack of self-worth and discipline that comes with putting a bit of effort into your appearance.  And it certainly epitomizes the lack of respect that we have for others--including those in authority and those who serve us.

1 comment:

  1. Well, you were funny there for a while. As if you had loosened up and were mentally wearing one of those dreaded open collars as you wrote. That last paragraph though is kinda like hitting a wall. Harsh. Punitive. Really starchy and waaay too "down on your town" especially for a guy who has/maybe will again run for office.
    You dissed your peeps there hun. Youinsulted your entire city. Not good. It would have been a nicer read, and a wiser choice for you to have thought a bit longer and come up with some amusing point, or perhaps an "I Love Oshkosh Anyway" twist. It actually would be interesting to muse on the origins of why WI people have such a fondness for dressing down. The whole state does. I don't know from whence that comes, but I'm quite sure it's not a signal of a sinister lack of respect for Authority and the Armed Forces that is behind it. And the younger generation people I know are worried as all get-out about the future and really frustrated about the lack of a feeling of optimism and opportunity. Some of the stinkers I see yelling drunkenly around here DO have fratboyish "entitlement" written all over them, but many do not. Generalizing about and insulting an entire generation (or two or three?) seems unwise to me. Maybe a safe insult about Uggs or flip-flops, and just leave it at that. It's pretty much open season on those things year-round. People who wear them expect abuse.
    But overall, Snark is a lot like a Klingon Bat'leth. You don't just pick it up and start flailing about. You'll hurt yourself.
    Your Jack Daniels T-shirt thing was really good though, it certainly deserves better than that last paragraph.
    Have fun in Scotland. Just don't get all fussy about the kilts, knee sox, little furry purse objects, and lack of undergarments.