DC Calls NY “LA”

Power DressingMy head is spinning.

Last week, the Wall Street Journal features an article titled, "The Return of Old School Power Attire" about a law firm in Dallas & New York where newbies are taught the proper way to dress through passive-aggressive clues. If your shoes aren’t nice enough, they don’t tell you to buy new shoes; they take you to a cafe with a shoe shine stand next door, suggest a shine, and then subtly hint that you should spend more on your shoes. Then again, as a passive-aggressive manager myself, I kinda liked it.

The thrust of the article is that in bad economic times, venerable firms re-institute professional dress codes. It’s a rehash of memes made popular after the Dot Com bubble burst in 2000, as though khakis or jeans are to blame for every financial bubble of the last 10 years.

On the other hand, you have the 21 Club in Manhattan – a legendary bar & restaurant that has maintained a dress code its entire existence – relaxing the dress code to reflect the changing times. I feared it was a sign of the apocalypse. You also have GWB’s former Chief of Staff disrespecting President Obama over removing his suit coat in the Oval Office (even though virtually every past President has also been photographed in shirt sleeves in the Oval Office including GWB).

Now, we have Washington, D.C. picking a fight with New York by calling it Los Angeles! This morning’s Washington Post starts an article with: "If New Yorkers want to go the way of Los Angeles, may God have mercy upon their souls." If you thought the East Coast/West Coast rap beefs were bad, read the full article here.

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