Saturday, June 11, 2011

52 Weeks of Personal Genealogy & History - Clothing

52 Weeks of Personal Genealogy & History by Amy Coffin is a series of weekly blogging prompts (one for each week of 2011) that invite genealogists and others to record memories and insights about their own lives for future descendants. You do not have to be a blogger to participate. If you do not have a genealogy blog, write down your memories on your computer, or simply record them on paper and keep them with your files.
  • Week 24. Clothes. What types of clothes did you wear as a child? What was “in fashion” and did your style compare?
I've pretty much always been a jeans and t-shirt guy.  As far back as I've been allowed to choose my own clothing, that's been it.  There was a while in the 80's when I indulged in the parachute pants and so forth, but I was young, and it was the style for a certain segment of the population.  When I was very young, I wore what my parents supplied, which was usually jeans and t-shirts or similar.  I remember being pretty hard on pants, going through the knees fairly quickly.  Sorry, mom!

Later, I enlisted in the Navy, and wore what they told me to wear.  Which was dungaree (denim jeans) pants with a chambray work shirt if working in other than office spaces, or either dress whites or blues if working in office settings.  Occasionally there would be ceremonies for various things, and then it might be the Service Dress Whites or Service Dress Blues (the Crackerjack uniform), depending on season.  Whites were for summer, blues were for winter, although Service Dress blues were sort of the ultimate uniform - if nothing else was available, SDB was it.  I think I wore my Service Dress Blues less than 5 times.  The trousers literally had 13 buttons.  Don't drink anything before putting them on.  You can't get out fast enough.  The dungarees have since been replaced by a digicam uniform much like the Army and Marines wear, colored slightly differently for the Navy.  When I was at sea, the dungarees got ditched for color-coded clothing that indicated at a glance what sort of work I did on board the aircraft carrier.  They were more comfortable, too.  Dungarees were not made for human forms, I think.

After that, it was back to jeans & t-shirts for a while when I was working, going back to college, and finding my permanent career.  I ended up working IT in Academia, so jeans & t-shirts were acceptable for a long time.  When I left that, I went to retail IT, which demanded a slightly more upscale look, so I moved to slacks (preferably cargo pants) and polo or similar shirts.  When I moved back to academia, I kept the upscale, wearing mostly cargo pants and button down shirts.

I own a suit.  I've worn it far too often lately for job interviews.  I rarely wear it for anything else, and probably could use an updated one for style.  It's just not something I'm comfortable in.  I've worn a tuxedo, three times.  Junior and Senior Prom back in high school, and my wedding day.  My wedding tux was white with tails, a top hat and cane.  Classy, and it was fun for the day, but I can't see myself needing to wear one of those again, ever.

I think I own a pair or two of shorts.  I'm not sure I could find them, or if they fit.  I don't wear shorts.  Most of the year in Minnesota, that's not unusual.  But most Minnesotans seem to like to wear shorts in the summer.  Call me an oddball, I don't. 

Anyone who pays attention to fashions knows that jeans and t-shirts have not always been the fashionable thing to wear.  I never let that bother me.  Aside from that 80's period, I never much let fashion dictate what I wore.  Even then it was also somewhat of a comfort thing, as the styles then were comfortable for me to wear, unlike, say, the tight 70's disco clothes.  I don't tend to pay too much attention to fashion, like most aspects of popular culture.

This and all other articles on this blog are © copyright 2011 by Daniel G. Dillman