Mayor Dan Rivera of Lawrence, Mass.
Recently, Dan Rivera, the newly elected Mayor of Lawrence Massachusetts, has instituted a dress code for City Hall employees. Read the story here.
Basically, he's only asking grown-ups who work in an office to dress like grown-ups who work in an office, which of course has some of those same grown-ups in a lather. He's banned jeans, sweatpants, spandex, and pyjamas. To me, the only thing shocking here is that we need to have rules in place to get people to do this. Adults used to just know these things.
The rule that seems to have garnered the most negative reaction is the one requiring men to wear a tie. It's been called everything from sexist to elitist. A lot of guys are citing the cost of these clothes as their primary complaint. I'm sure you all can guess how I feel about that. Of the more than one hundred ties currently in my own collection, I'm sure none of them cost more that five dollars at thrift shops.
Lawrence has been known for years as something of a "rough town", one of poverty and crime. Mayor Rivera is trying to clean up the city's image, and he believes that City Hall, effectively his own back yard, is the place to start. I for one would like to show my support of his efforts. As such, I'd like to take up a collection of ties and donate them to the Mayor to give out to his male employees. An Affordable Wardrobe will be donating a dozen or so of its own ties to this cause. I'm sure many of you have at least one tie you don't really need. Find that tie, and send it to me by the end of the week. I'll drive them up to Mayor Rivera's office myself with support on behalf of all the readers of this blog. I guarantee that after a week of wearing ties regularly, most of the complainers will begin to feel better about themselves in the morning.
Let's get behind Mayor Rivera. This really is one point we can chalk up for the good guys.
You can send your ties here:
An Affordable Wardrobe
249 Elm Street 2nd Floor
Somerville, MA, 02144
p.s. the last time I visited a thrift shop in Lawrence, I came away with half a dozen shirts from the Andover Shop. Penury is not an excuse.