No Tie

Picked it up from The Fat Guy’s feeds. Didn’t much care for the politics, which got me thinking.

I’m all about voting. I’m registered as a Republican. My politics are left of central and I tend towards the “Yellow Dog Democrat” ideals. My current voter’s registration card is stamped “Democrat.” I’m all about our right, and our duty, to vote. Study the issues; vote. I’m sick at heart, though, at the way the media circus has ruined the solemnity of the vote. My proposal? Vote. Vote early. Vote often. And then? At the exit poll? Lie. Lie about who you voted for. Just make the media the wrong.

Shopping, the other evening, casually walking through a mall with a girlfriend, I noticed a brightly colored display that really grabbed my attention. Ties. New colors, some soft pastels, some brighter and sharper, the colors were rather artfully arranged, by design, I’m sure. Graduating colors and patterns, be my guess. I didn’t linger, other than to briefly fondle a silk cravat. I haven’t worn a tie in a long time. I think it was a grandfather’s funeral. Prior to that? I had a deal with myself that I wasn’t going to wear a traditional tie, brightly colored cloth wrapped tight around my neck, ever again. Never. Wear. A Tie. Ever.

I can probably still tie a Half-Windsor or even a Full-Windsor because I was forced to do so, too many times. Part of a uniform, of sorts, and it’s a uniform I opt not to wear, ever again. Towards that end, I do have an eclectic collection “bolo” ties, the universal Southwestern American neckwear. I’m good with that. For a spell, I had the white dress shirts with the collar button/tab thing, for cinching that collar up tight, and popping the tie out. I would wear that a smaller, more refined bolo tie. Looked great, if oddly parochial, especially on me. I recall, once or twice, going to the airport half-naked with studs, cuff links and big bolo tie: I would dress in my formal “Uvalde Tux” after making it through security.

Don’t know where I picked up the term, “Uvalde Tux.” I can’t seem to locate a source, other than it’s an expression I’ve dredged up from my own memory. A Uvalde Tux, named for a small town in south Texas – Uvalde, is a tux shirt, mine with Longhorn studs, and cuff links, mine with zodiac symbols, and jeans, boots, and the outfit is topped with a tux jacket. Although, these days, I have a couple of “western” (yoke) sport jacket that I would probably use instead. Formal casual attire, I think, would sum it up. And that’s about as formal as I can get these days.

The debate as the source of the tie to begin with? Probably a fashion thing, at one time born out of need. The only cold places I’ve been lately? A few winter days in Texas, a few winter evenings here, and then, maybe a half dozen years ago? London (UK) during the shortest days of the year. That’s cold. And a long scarf, loosely wrapped around my neck, helps to seal the coat, collar, from the cold weather? Makes sense. However, repeatedly and even daily, cinching about sixteen extra layers cloth around my neck? Especially, if it’s going to be typically warm? Makes no damn sense at all.

Me, and apparently, one ally, we think them ties are stupid. That’s us, an army of two. The collar is at least four layers of cloth and the tie is a minimum of three layers, so that’s seven extra layers of cloth, tightly wrapped around the neck. Give them enough cloth and they will all hang themselves.

About the author: Born and raised in East Texas, Kramer Wetzel, settled in a South Austin trailer park before trailer parks were cool. He now lives in San Antonio, Texas.

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  • Scott Oct 30, 2008 @ 8:30

    The other promise after no ties was, only boots. Preferably Lucchese, but Ariat & Red Wing work too. Never a wingtip, loafer, moccasin, wacky Euro square-toed dress-ups. Maybe the occasional hiking boot for long trods. Still, it’s a boot.

  • Kramer Oct 30, 2008 @ 10:08

    Boot or sandals. Odd, I’ve got a funeral to attend tomorrow. Got out a nice bolo tie. And Lucchese boots, but of course. There aren’t any ties in this house. Or euro-styled “chews.”

  • ssmith04 Oct 30, 2008 @ 10:25

    Neckties are an invention of the Devil. So are closed shoes, and most especially high heels. Next on the list: cosmetics and hair permanents. (Some people — no names — have the audacity to have naturally curly/wavy hair).
    I look forward to retirement when I can live in jeans, shorts, tee shirts and sandals. Or less.

  • Kramer Oct 30, 2008 @ 12:07

    I’d go around in nothing but loincloth if I thought I could get away with it. And it would have to have a pocket for the phone.

  • Scott Oct 30, 2008 @ 16:25

    I look forward to retirement

    Don’t wait — start your own business, dress how you want. Eat a lot of bologna, too.

    Well, shorts=sandals. I meant with long pants. Still can’t bring myself to wear sandals w long pants.

  • Kramer Nov 1, 2008 @ 14:20

    Or, as some might suggest, I’m just “Bexar foot” these days?

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