In high school, I went through a phase where I was wearing ties to school everyday. I especially enjoyed Mass, not because I was religious — oh God, no — but because I loved dressing up. I look good in a suit. I remember dressing especially well one day and being disappointed that the girl I had a crush on didn’t see me. I almost called it a waste but then I remembered that looking good is never a waste. For jazz band, we originally wore white shirts with black slacks. Then, someone came in with his shirt untucked and we were punished by having to wear a suit jacket. Ha! That wasn’t a punishment for me. My skinny frame looks better covered by a suit jacket than with a loose-fitting dress shirt. (I repeat: I look good in a suit.) Plus, I didn’t have to wear white! I could pick and choose from different colored shirts, ties, and jackets.
Recently, I’ve been making an effort to dress a little better. I was inspired by the night my friends and I went out to the bars and suited up. I had a great time, and I felt great about myself. Then, one day I decided that I was going to wear a tie to work. Everything just felt right. I also love it when my dress shoes click against the floor.
This thing has been brewing since another night out when I wore a vest along with my 3-dollar tie. (It looks nicer than it sounds; I got it at a thrift store.) It wasn’t a full suit, but along with my hat, I looked good. Dressing that way wasn’t a consistent thing.
I’ve always wanted to be thought of as a sharp dresser, but I never really made an effort. Mostly this is because I hate the mall and rather dislike the process of buying clothes.
This weekend, when I went up to Davis for Juan’s party, I dressed a little nicer than I usually do. I wore a sweater along with a pink tie underneath. Yet this dressing up was for before the party, so I really did it for no special occasion. I was complimented, and it made me feel really good about myself. I wore a similar outfit to our Christmas party; I really love wearing ties. Juan’s party was an animal-themed party, and I dressed up as a hunter. I had a safari helmet, cargo shorts, and a khaki shirt. Someone said it looked cute, and once again, I was really happy to hear it. It isn’t an example of dressing nicely, but I still enjoy the compliments. Actually, to get a little off topic, I was much more excited when someone said, “Oh my god” about my outfit, because that’s exactly what I was going for. A hunter was such a clever idea.
There was a recent article in the NY Times about young people dressing nicer, especially in the workplace. I don’t know if it’s a bogus trend or not, but they did cite two of my current favorite TV shows: White Collar and How I Met Your Mother. I want to be as sharp a dresser as Neil or Barney, haha.
I want this to be part of my identity. I want to be thought of as a sharp dresser. I want to be complimented. I want to often be overdressed for occasions. I want to dress well because it makes me feel good. Well, it goes a little deeper than just feeling good. When I dress up nice for work or when I go out, it makes me feel more confident. I feel a bit like the old me, the guy I knew in high school who was cocky and knew destiny was on his side. That guy always wore ties. This guy wears ties too, but this guy also has better shoes and he’s smarter and he has a college degree. I know, I am amazing.