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12 February 2013

Questions about dress

Tomorrow I have a presentation so I will wear a pair of grey slacks and a Rue-21 blouse that my good friend gave me. The blouse is a delicate little things. Very pretty but I have to wash it by hand and never, never dry it in the direct sunlight. It is made of this thin material that is rather translucent but the material is fake so it does not breath. My friends is more fashion forward than I and she some how got a savior-sense to giving me the blouse that she refers to as a top. I like it and I humbling admit that I have fashion sense that differs from the social norm, but some how I resent the fact that when I give presentations here at the University of Belize that somehow others, lecturers and classmates alike, feel the need to remind me to dress professionally.

Today I am wearing a comfortable set of clothes. I agree it is not the most unflattering. The pants has an old-fashion knickerbocker feel but they are made of blue-jeans. They have no pockets and have an elastic waste. Since I am loosing weight they are baggy and make my thighs look like hollow bags. My t-shirt is a dark green faded retired sports wear. I commandeered it from Beloved shortly after we got married because it was his team shirt when he was younger and proud of his Canadian heritage and played hockey on a community team. I love to wear because it big and comfortable and I love the idea of being Beloved's one and only groupy. I missed out on his hockey playing days but I think I would have loved to sit in the benches and cheered for him when he played games on the cement floor that different community business donated money for even though the tropical heat of Belize seems to contradict the idea of hockey fever. I would cheer for him more then for the love of the game. I know he was pretty good at the game and playing was good for his self-esteem; it helped him develop self control and anger management skills. Besides, I think the sweaty, brawny, muscular, long-and-thin-without-an-ounce-of-fat frame is amazing. While I am not sure of the ideology of a foreign sport being played in a community where the members aren't aware that soccer is called football and baseball is sort of a feminine sport....I would love the chance to cheer for my man. So I wear his shirt. In tribute to the Eagles, his team and his youth.

Throughout my life, my clothes seems to be a sore spot for me. I value comfort and sentiments over public opinion. I know that my pro-fashion sense friends will tell me that I need to dress to impress, and that people will only take me as seriously as I portray myself. They think my fashion-sense is a sign of low self-esteem, and a sense of not taking pride in myself and my work. While I do take pride in my work, i would love for someone to ask me the story behind the articles of clothing I wear. Each one has. I favour my clothes based on the experience and the story. I love pretty things, but I also love them to have a story, a sense of worth, a sense of uniqueness.While I don't know how to point out the name brands like my fashion-minded friends, I can determine those who have interesting clothes.

So when I read a course description and a requirement for a presentation reads something like "professional dress is require" and points are allotted to the dress, many questions come to mind. 1. How does one define the term "professional dress"? 2. What is the importance of professional dress? 3. How come the authority of what is profession or not is the authority? Why do some people feel like they can judge others by what they wear? Why do some people think that their fashion sense is more validate then others? Who has the right to define what is right for others?

When I was browsing the web for some ideas for this post I came across many articles that used loaded language.  Things like "appropriate" "too much" or "too little", "conservative" "power colours" "creditability" "appealing" "need" 'should be". I really don't like the idea of someone telling me their opinion as if it is fact. For example, I have a lecturer who loves to wear warm, bright colours that represent her cultural roots, although the class is not about her cultural roots. I enjoy her class and take her just as serious as I do a creative writing teacher who wears slacks and tailored blouses.

I guess I am stubborn. I might not get a job when I am done with my time at UB. I just might end up selling out. But I really don't get this "professional dress" thing.

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