Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Loose Noose

“It’s time…” you tell yourself. Mentally you prepare, repeating in your head over and over again that you can do this. Standing up, you go to the bathroom. You should clean yourself up you think. Wouldn’t want them to see you like this. Back in your private room you glance at the black suit you’ve laid out the day before. Yup, black is good. And as you let out a final sigh and affix the last button on your shirt, you place the noose around your neck.

Sounds like a suicide? Nah, that’s just the average guy waking up to go to work.

The humble necktie. A 56 inch long piece of cloth, narrow on one end, wide at the other. How did it come about and how is it such a norm in today’s society? Are there deep cultural significances embedded between the polyester nylon fibres and double windsors? More importantly, WHY AM I WEARING IT??

Sure it’s fashionable, but what else? It is an article of clothing that serves no purpose other than aesthetics. It’s restrictive and uncomfortable. It is literally…a noose around your neck, applying pressure on the very tube that supports our existence. A constant reminder to the fact that we are slaves to capitalism, as bulls with a ring around their noses.
 -A doctor’s necktie is breeding ground for bacteria.
 -Ties make you more prone to accidents. You know, caught in elevators, escalators, copy machines, moving buses, in the grip of a muscular drunk guy you are trying to back away from, etc.
-Tightly tied ties tied to increase risk of glaucoma. (Who cares if it’s true, I get to make up that cool tongue twister, and that’s all that matters)

Apparently the neck decoration was popularised by French ruler Louis XIV( now now, lets not blame the French just yet). He got the idea from the Croatian empire, who wore silk handkerchiefs around their necks. So we now know for sure that historically at least, the tie was really meant for aesthetic purposes only.

But now, some argue that the tie is more than that. It might serve as a male phallic symbol of power…flaccid though it may be. I suppose this is true, so true in fact that a lady boss in Hanover, West Germany has banned neckties in her workplace. Because we all know it’s sexist to walk around with your phallic symbols dangling from your neck…

Others have pointed out that the peculiar shape of the tie was no accident, and its arrow shaped head was meant to “point” at something.

I might contemplate not wearing a tie on some days, but not for this reason! If this argument holds, then the same can be said of V necks! And you won’t see us men complaining.

Neckties may also play a secret grand role in economic research according to some studies. They say that the width of the necktie worn by the populace is indicative of economic growth. Wider ties mean a decline and narrower ties meant the economy is growing.
  This graph is the real deal. I did not make it up. 

 This is somewhat in line with the hemline indicator, which is immensely more interesting. Research says that the length of women’s skirts rise and fall together with the economy.

Pre World War I, skirts covered everything bar the end of your foot. They were pretty much leg curtains, then post WWI women dared to be bolder the skirt length shortening slightly (is that an ankle I see?. The Great Depression saw the skirts drop back down (aww), and rose again as the stock markets begin to grow (Yay, calfs).

As lives continued down luxury lane, skirts continued up scanty street (Oh yea, nothing sexier than knees!), then of course came the miniskirts (finally…thighs!) as the economy boomed. But after 1970, longer skirts made a comeback to be fashionable again and that’swhen the world ended.

Still,indicators mean nothing. There are other tie “indicators” that could just as easily be proven. Take organized crime for example. We all know that when the cops crash the party, the goon with the shittiest tie and hence the least important gets gunned down first. Believe me! I watch TV!

So what is the point of this article? Am I going to stop wearing a tie? No…I have to be a conformist in this matter (I know, I’m hideous!! Don’t look at me!!) because I have not the power or the status to make plain ol shirts the workforce’s uniform of choice. As long as the elite keep wearing ties, the minions will keep trying to emulate them. And until I become supreme ruler of Earth, I still want to look presentable; even at the price of comfort…high heels anyone?

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