05-07-2013   2 comments

I’m what most people would consider a person who dresses down instead of up.  I’ve always been much more concerned with comfort than fashion (ask anyone who knows me).  For most of my adult life after serving in the Army I was required to wear a suit and tie every day.  I started out wearing sport coats and dress slacks, then to three piece suits, and finally to a more expensive brand of suits required by my position and the company I worked for.  Even as a police officer I wore the company uniform when not working undercover. A tightly tailored and uncomfortable outfit with a big hat, lots of leather, a gun, and other assorted tools of the trade.  I hated it.

I was forced to maintain quite an assortment of garments for a number of different companies because I didn’t want to look too stupid or out of style.  I eventually had almost a hundred ties, dozens of shirts, suits, and all of the stupid accoutrements  that seem to be required for each.  It was awful.  I’d have preferred on any given day to wear a T-shirt, shorts, and a raggedy old pair of flip flops.

After many years of "dressing for the man" I finally saw that light at the end of the tunnel and it was my retirement.  I actually never thought I’d retire but the State of Maine in it’s infinite wisdom offered me early retirement since my job was being eliminated due to fiscal concerns. I was pissed and upset for about five minutes and then began planning my future.

I needed to simplify my life in many ways. I decided that with no company or boss to help dress me I would finally get to go my own way.  My final day of work was one of those days where everyone comes around to say their goodbyes and to tell you how much they’d miss you (and good riddance).  About seventy percent of them are just being politically correct and couldn’t care less.  They should have just held an official funeral service right then and there because that’s what it felt like. I said all the right things, shook the right hands, smiled, and all the while thinking, "get me the hell out of here".

The next morning I awoke a new man.  I spent a good portion of that day packing up all of my suits, ties, sport coats, overcoats, dress shoes, and anything else I could think of.  That was one trip to Goodwill I’ll never forget. I kept one good suit, two dress shirts, one overcoat, and one pair of dress shoes for the occasional wedding and/or funeral. My closet was finally empty.  It took a few weeks longer to rid myself of all those other little things that tied me to certain companies for such a large part of my life.  It felt good to be free of it all and it also created a need for a huge wardrobe change and a serious shopping trip.

It’s now four and a half years later and things have changed dramatically.  I look in my closet and what do I see?  Three pairs of sneakers, four pairs of flip flops, one pair of dress shoes, two pairs of beach shoes, and four pair of Crocs.  Next comes ten pairs of jeans, fifty assorted T-shirts, twelve pairs of shorts, four dress shirts, one suit, one raincoat, and a flannel shirt or two so people will know I’m still from Maine.  One pair of hiking boots, a back pack, camera equipment, a walking stick, and a pair of really cool snow shoes w/ poles.

Welcome to my new so called life.

2 responses to “05-07-2013

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  1. What, no underware???

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