As far as I can tell, you publishing people have no freakin' idea what the term “business casual” means, let alone “summer Fridays.” Well, to be fair, neither do accounting people, tech people, advertising people, financial people, legal people or marketing people—and definitely not pharmaceutical people. Ugh. But Soulless Drug Manufacturer's Weekly didn't ask me to write a story on the topic, so they're on their own as far as I'm concerned. You, I think I can help. Here are my top four signs that you're screwing up summer business casual, with my prescriptions for change. You can thank me by upping your order of my new book, Freakin' Fabulous, today!
Sign #1: I can see your dangling butterfly bellybutton ring.
Most of you over the age of 23 will find that one obvious. But if you just graduated from college and your idea of a classy broad is Kim Kardashian, chances are you're completely clueless about office-appropriateness. As a rule of thumb, if you can wear it to “The Club,” you can't wear it to work in publishing, unless your publication is sold on a high shelf in a plastic wrapper at the airport. Prescription: Skirts should be no shorter than the top of the knee. Your navel should be covered. (If your thong strap is visible when you bend over, your shirt is too short.) And when it comes to cleavage, you can show chest, but not breast. Sorry, fellas.
Sign #2: Your denim is as faded as Judith Regan's publishing career.
Just kidding, Judy! Love ya. Light-colored denim is appropriate only in very casual situations (e.g., playing Frisbee with the dog, gardening, double homicide). “Business casual” is casual in name only, just as the Daily News is news in name only. Prescription: If your office is denim-friendly, look for jeans in dark washes that are free of bleaching or embellishment. Trouser jeans are always a nice option.
Sign #3: You make that annoying slap-slap-slap sound while walking to the coffee machine.
Come on, you're a rising star in the glamorous world of publishing, not the shower attendant at a public pool! So leave the flip-flops at home. I can't believe I even have to tell you this. Prescription: A real shoe. For men, that means a laceup or a loafer, not a sandal. And, no, a sneaker is not a shoe. It's a sneaker. Save it for the gym. Women have a little more leeway here, which should compensate for the pain of childbirth. Your options include ballet flats, espadrilles, peeptoe pumps and slingbacks. And you can probably get away with wearing a sandal, but please, at least make it a fierce one, not some butch orthopedic Birkenstock.
Sign #4: The client you were meeting for after-work drinks tried to slip you the tongue.
Ladies, when 6 p.m. rolls around and you're grabbing a gin and tonic (or four) with your friends, go ahead and strip down to your cami and a pencil skirt. And by all means, swap the pumps for a strappy stiletto. It's summer and looking like you're out to get laid is fun! But if you've promised a professional contact that you'd meet him for a margarita, stick to the prescriptions outlined above. It may be 110 degrees at dusk, but you don't want to give the wrong impression. Prescription: Bring along your jacket or cardigan, and sit in the AC if necessary. Save any saliva-swapping for the cab ride home.
Enjoy the rest of the summer, kids. See you on the bookshelves.
|Simon Spotlight Entertainment will publish Clinton Kelly's Freakin' Fabulous: How to Dress, Behave, Speak, Eat, Drink, Entertain, Decorate, and Generally Be Better than Everyone Else, in October.|