Tag Archives: Dirty

Fashion Disaster

by Richard

So, it appears that the young dudes and dudettes of today are, to put it as delicately as possible, idiots.

I know. It comes as a bit of a shock to me as well.

The latest confirmation that young people are idiots comes from the Charlotte Observer, our local paper. In the Style section, the editors ran an article trying to help young, college-aged folks fit in with the corporate crowd.

They talked about not wearing flip flops, ragged kakis or ragged jeans, not wearing a micro-skirt, not letting a bra strap intentionally show, not wearing dirty shirts or coming to the office unshaven. It talked, basically, about how to dress like a grown-up instead of a kid.

And the shocking thing was that people actually didn’t know this. Seriously.

I mean, when I was in college and I was internship hunting, I made sure to shave off the magnificent beard and mustache I’d been cultivating for years. I was smart enough to know that people looking to hire a young dude for an internship weren’t going to squee with joy when a proto-Zack Galafianakis walked through the door.

I understood that I had to ditch the jeans and wear the suit, button-down shirt, tie and lace-up dress shoes I’d just purchased from the J.C. Penney catalog.

When you’re going off to try and find a job that doesn’t require you to swing a shovel or hit with a hammer, you’ve got to dress up to the part. That should be a given.

Apparently, young dudes and dudettes dressing appropriately is a problem even when they grow up and are supposed to actually have a slightly working brain. It’s hard to get a grade-school young dude to wear long pants to a formal occasion, but that’s okay because they’re in grade school and don’t know any better. Things even out as they head into middle school and get even better in high school.

So, it seems, in college all that learning about appropriate dress gets tossed out of the brain in favor of factoring Y on the hypotenuse. Or maybe beer. It could go either way.

Another factor, I’m thinking, is this epidemic of unearned self-confidence. These kids get complimented all the time for, basically, nothing so much as they’re growing up, they end up thinking they’re the center of the universe. So, if they want to wear something, and you’ve got a problem with it, well. . . That’s your problem. Get used to it.

Either way, it’s something young dudes and dudettes need to learn. When you’re going somewhere with hat in hand, looking for a job, if you don’t fit in, you don’t get in the door. It might not be fair and it might not be right, but it is that way it is, so they need to get used to it.

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Sunday Serenade: Always

by Richard

Sometimes, dudes, you can make a mistake and never even know it until much, much later. I know, big announcement there, but it is relevant.

See, since this week I’m celebrating the 21st anniversary of the day my lovely wife, known to one and all as She Who Must Be Kept Away From Music Selection, and I were married, I thought I’d let you in on our dirty, little secret.

The problem is that I let her choose our first song. Which is how we ended up dancing to Always by Atlantic Starr, a true relic of the treacly 1980’s. Yeah, it’s a sweet sentiment, but still. . .

It’s just not a very good song.

But it is the song she chose for us to dance to for the first time as husband and wife, so it’ll always have a place on my computer hard drive. Right next to Meatloaf’s Bat Out Of Hell and other 80’s pop ballads. That is, in a dusty and disused corner of the hard drive.

Anyway, here’s your chance to enjoy it.

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Getting Your Hands Dirty

by Richard

As much as he complained about it (and, boy did he complain about it), I think my oldest young dude, Sarcasmo, enjoyed the public service requirement he had to fulfill before he could graduate from high school.

Public schools here in Charlotte, NC, require high school graduates to amass 100 hours of community service as a condition of graduation. In addition to the service work he did while volunteering/traveling with Rustic Pathways, Sarcasmo also did some work feeding the homeless, feeding down-on-their-luck veterans, cleaning parks and collecting clothing and other goods for families below the poverty line.

Had it been left up to him, Sarcasmo’d probably have not completed his service requirement as of yet. But that’s more because he’s the world’s worst procrastinator. He whined whenever his mom or I found an opportunity, but, after he finished it up, he’d always come back with a smile to talk about what fun he had and how glad he was to have been able to help.

Call me self-absorbed, but I never knew these sorts of things existed when I was growing up. These opportunities were there, I’m sure, but I was too involved in the totally important Richard world to have much to do with it. And I think I’m the worse for that.

I’m determined my other young dudes won’t miss out like I did.

Zippy the Monkey Boy goes to a private school for kids with learning disabilities. As far as I can tell, his school doesn’t have a service requirement for graduation. Of course, that’s not to say that he, himself, doesn’t have a service requirement, because he does now. Zippy the Monkey Boy and Hyper Lad both have volunteer quotas they have to make, even though Hyper Lad won’t be graduating from high school for another five years.

We want to make sure that service becomes a regular activity and a regular thought in the heads of all three young dudes.

With that in mind, Zippy the Monkey Boy signed up with Hands-On Charlotte, a service organization here in Charlotte, NC that has a special group dedicated to helping teens find appropriate and fun service opportunities. Last weekend, Zippy the Monkey Boy spent his Saturday morning helping to clean up a local park. He came back dirty, tired and sore, but still grinning and talking about his next project.

Now I’m looking for something we can all volunteer to do together. I want the young dudes to understand that we’re lucky in that we have what we need and a lot of what we want. Not everyone is so lucky. There’s a quote I like: To whom much is given, much is expected.

It’s time to give back. I think that’s a great idea to instill in the heads of young dudes everywhere.


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