I’m working in an office today. Recent organizational changes at work have found me a new boss. He’s relatively close to my home office this week so I traveled to western New York to meet with him and a couple of my team mates. I still have a great gig and I am still quite content.
When I travel to Greenville, S.C. for work I sometimes have a hard time working in a cubicle with typical office chatter in progress around me. The office here in Rochester is fairly quiet; I can hear only occasional conversation and other ambient noises that reveal the fact that I am not working my home office. However, there are is one noise that I’m finding distracting and that’s the clop-clop-clopping of flip flops. Someone in the office has been walking around with very loose fitting sandals of some sort.
When it comes to your typical corporate settings, I tend to be on the conservative type. When I worked at the radio station in the mid 1990s, I would wear shorts because it was a Fun! Radio Station Atmosphere! with plenty of Frivolity! But as I moved to a more corporate environment, I found myself sticking to the tried and true khakis and a collared shirt; usually button down but sometimes a polo shirt. Dressing this way just put me into the mood to work.
Now, when Earl and I go out to a restaurant or something in the summertime, I’ve been known to wear my sandals with my khaki pants and rest of my business casual attire. But I can’t bring myself to wear sandals or flip flops to the office, especially when they’re loud and clopping sounding.
The company does have a Friday casual attire policy that includes shorts during the summertime, but I can’t bring myself to go to an office in shorts and sandals or the like. I just wouldn’t feel like working or be in the mindset to make the sorts of decisions and the like that I do on a daily basis. Casual attire at work feels scruffy to me.
One other trend I’ve noticed a little bit is businessmen (think lawyers or stock brokers or something) in three piece suits but with an unshaven face. They don’t have a beard, they don’t have trimmed up stubble, they just didn’t shave. As an apparently conservative thinking gay man, I don’t think I would be as comfortable giving my millions to a stock broker that can’t find time to shave. If said handler of my millions wants to grow a beard, I’m sure he can do it on vacation. If you can’t get out of my bed in time to shave before work then how do I know you’re not going to be lax about selling or buying stock on my behalf?
As I plow my way through my late 40s it’s becoming quite apparent that I’m turning to one of the older, conservative types. Now get off my lawn.