Closet Cemetery

There is a graveyard in my bedroom.

I know it is Halloween time, but this is no decoration.

Hanging in my closet and folded in my dresser drawers are the clothes I used to wear every day.

When I retired in June, I figured that my sport jackets, ties, dress shirts, slacks and shoes would be put to less use.

Combined with the pandemic’s shutdown, I have had even fewer opportunities to dress up with nice restaurants closed.

One of the things I miss about not working is getting dressed for my job mainly because I got dressed up.  I enjoyed choosing which tie to wear with each shirt, which socks with each pair of shoes.

The majority of people don’t dress up anymore, and now with the economic shutdown forcing people to work from home, t-shirts and yoga pants have become standard work wear.

Where I worked, I was a walking anachronism.  In 31 years, I can count on one hand how many male teachers I saw regularly wearing any form of dress-up clothing:  a tie, a jacket, a dress shirt, long pants, shoes with a heel.  It was common to see men wearing shorts and sandals.  As Judge Judy would admonish, “Where did you think you were going today—the beach?”

In recent years, not even the male administrators dressed properly.  If it weren’t for the gray hair and facial wrinkles, they could have been mistaken for students in their hoodies get-up.  I’m sure when they passed by me, they thought, “Who does he think he is?”

What I thought I was was an educator, a role model for young people.  Dressing formally meant that teaching was a serious profession just like medicine and law.

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