|June 14, 2008
Eastwood's advice in "Dirty Harry" that opinions,
like certain body parts, are best kept to yourself.
Did we lose the Dress Code?
other evening I was driving downtown, and passed the local
funeral home where a wake was being conducted. This usually
means the funeral would be at one of the local churches in
the morning, and friends and family were stopping-by to pay
their last respects to the person lying inside. I've been to
a lot of wakes and funerals, and at my age, I'm sure I'll be
attending them more frequently in the future.
recent years, I've noticed that people no longer seem to
follow the dress codes of our parents and grandparents, and
it is getting hard to distinquish those attending a funeral
from those going to a party at the beach. The mourners
(perhaps they didn't know they were mourning) in front of
the funeral home were dressed in golf shirts, jeans, slacks
or shorts, and wore tennis shoes. I spotted one fellow
wearing a t-shirt with a half-offensive remark printed on
it, torn jeans, and shower clogs. I'm sure the deceased or
the immediate family did not anticipate this breach of
social etiquette, except for the members of the immediate
family who were wearing golf shirts, jeans, slacks or
shorts, and tennis shoes.
A few years ago, I went
to a wake for a family friend, and I was the only guy in the
room wearing a suit. Even the guest of honor, a man in his
late 40's didn't have one on, lying instead in the coffin
with freshly dry cleaned jeans, a jean jacket and shirt.
Turns out, he never wore a suit, didn't own one, and the
family decided to bury him in what he normally wore. My
mistake, not to inquire what the deceased would be wearing.
past winter, my wife and I attended the opera, our son Jim
sings with the Minnesota Opera Company. It was a gala event,
and Jim had arranged for a good deal on tickets that
normally ran well-over $100 each.My wife wore a nice dress,
and I had on my best suit (that I could still fit into), a
dignified necktie, my one decent dress shirt, and had even
found my wingtip shoes hiding in the back of the closet.
The couple sitting to our right were really
dressed for the opera, the woman wore a 19th century formal
dress with a train, long white gloves, and a diamond tiara.
Her husband had on a tuxedo of the same vintage, a white bow
tie, and carried a top hat and cane. They were absolutely
stunning, and it was obvious they were enjoying the
opportunity to dress-up.
The couple to our left
were wearing t-shirts, jeans, and tennis shoes. They had, no
doubt, just come from a funeral.
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