Tuesday, August 31, 2004


The Grand Experiment

Alternate title: I hope the new leaf I’m turning over isn’t Poison Ivy.

Ok I wrote before about a little relevation I had after the office team building type activities at Die Konferenzmitte. You can read about it here.

I said something about ties. Well, ties are optional in the office. And they can be a pain. So I used to not bother with them. I mean I would not wear jeans and t-shirts; dressy type pants, sort of, and buttony type shirts. Somebody send me a fashion guide so I can name these things properly. But my shirts, while buttony, were not quite dressy type shirts that come folded with about twenty pins and stuffed in a plastic envelope sort of storage device, you know, the type of shirt you wear in your suit. Anyway, so now I’ve got nicer shirts, and ties and a little tie chain to hold it in place and I look all shiny and stuff like that. Oh and I have nice shiney shoes. I can kinda see how women get into shopping so much. That is so weak. I suck.

I hate shopping, but this was an I guess upper level type clothing selling place. And it was during the day. On a weekday. This is good for me. Guys hate shopping, so men’s department will be less crowded. Guys buy clothes like this for work. During the day they’re at work. So men’s department will be less crowded. When I got there, it wasn’t crowded. Have no fear that I would inflict my poor taste on my fellow citizens. I got a helper there who submitted appropriate selections of items from which I could safely choose. And so I chose away.

I also told myself I would be less anti-social. I can’t really pinpoint any examples for this part.

So after my first week back from satellite tasking, I can report positive results. I have had numerous comments on my attire, all positive. And even a couple of comments on my improved personality. Apparently I am now less serious and reserved. The tone of the comments indicated this was a good thing.

And now, something completely different:

I couldn’t help but be semi-known in our own office. But to the company HQ I was just another drone. After serving on the last committee Princess Wolfie volunteered me for, I’ve become known in HQ and in our other offices. My name was on the cover with the other committee members and this thing was sent to all sorts of people. When you’re an unknown drone, you aren’t called upon by bigwigs. And now Princess Wolfie has got me co-managing one of our client bases. I don’t want to be a go-to guy. Crap.
What people really want to know is, how many buttons are unbuttoned at the top of your shirt.
Zero buttons? You’re either a.) the classic nerd, b.) an out-of-touch New Waver, or c.) a turn-of-the-century heartland obsessive. In all cases, buy a tie; you’ll do yourself a world of good.
One button? Average. Simple. No judgments to be made here. You’re not offending anyone; you’re making nobody wonder. This is probably good.
Two buttons? If you’re starting each day this way, you’re either a cocky bastard or European, and lucky for you, I admire both types. For an American, though, it’s worth waiting until after lunch before you slip that second button.
Three or more buttons? Hope you’ve got another shirt on underneath there, Rico Suave.
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Well of course, when I'm wearing a tie, I'm buttoned all the way to the top. With no tie, only top button undone.

And your analysis of what this means seems pretty on target. Some people pay money to hear this from a shrink. You're a lot cheaper.
You know I mean that in a good way!
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