Wednesday, September 28, 2005


Shirts for fat guys

One of the oddities of being an academic is the need to buy "school clothes" each fall, something that always makes me feel young-in-a-bad-way. My clothes style is conservative, on the theory that certain "classic" styles look good enough that you can hunker down with them through the pendulum swing of fashion changes. It suits me because (a) I hate the process and expense of clothes shopping and (b) I would look goofy in trendy clothes.

With my conservative, always-slightly-out-of-style look, I can get by with a major wardrobe overhaul about once every four years. In the same 12-year period when I do 3 major wardrobe overhauls, a slave to fashion has to lay out major bucks on clothes about 7 times.

For school, I wear pleated pants, a broadcloth button-down Oxford shirt (preferably a solid color but white is okay), and a tie -- no jacket. Basically, if I had a pager or cell phone clipped to my belt I'd look like a Home Depot Assistant Manager on lunch break.

Lately, the shirts have been hard to find. They always have solid color button downs in the fancy dress shirt fine fabric, but not so much in the broadcloth lately. Or if they do, it's flourescent colors or bright primary colors or loud prints or patterns, none of which I like.

So I was delighted to walk into a department store the other day and find a whole wall of my kind of shirt, in about 5 different (non-primary) colors and a couple with muted patterns. but when I tried them on, they all looked funny.

It was then that I noticed: these were all "The Big Shirt," "generously sized for comfortable fit." That's just a big fat euphemism for "shirts for fat guys." Well, I thought, I'll just find the regular size in this style -- but no dice!

What's the deal? Only fat guys get to wear my shirt? I mean, I'm all for fat guys having comfortable shirts, but why should fat guys get the monopoly on my shirt? Apparently, the fashion industry is telling me that if I'm not a fat guy, I have to dress like Ashton Kutcher with those form fitting, pointy collared shirt-tail-out shirts. WTF!

320_Ashton_Kutcher-010 00001h
Left: Kutcher. Right: Random fashion-slave geek. Oy, what's with the vest?!

Several words for you: Brooks Brothers outlet in Johnson Creek. Classic, wrinkle-free (no, really! crisp creases with no ironing) shirts for less than $50. It's worth the drive.
Isaac's advice is sage.

I am partial to the pinpoint shirts, which you could consider as an associate-professorial upgrade. Perhaps needless to say, I leave the ironing to the professionals.
You also need to always have a 3-days-growth beard.
I thought all one's fashion needs can be satisfied with the Land's End catalog. Nu?
"Basically, if I had a pager or cell phone clipped to my belt I'd look like a Home Depot Assistant Manager on lunch break."

This is the funniest thing so far you have written that I have read. I can picture you roaming the aisles looking for something trying to help a customer. Too funny.
Over the past fifteen years or so, another thing I've noticed about men's shirts is that Small, Medium, and Large aren't the same volume they used to be. Twenty years ago, when I was in my twenties, I wore a Large. Now I drown in a Large size - Medium is what fits me. And I'm the same weight I was back then.
Anon 9:09. Size deflation has been occurring in women's fashions for years: a size 10 is now labelled a size 8, an 8 became a 6, and on down the line. Now there are clothes in size 0, thereby raising the important existential question, "if I wear a size 0, do I still exist?"

Welcome to our neuroses.
Hi, I was just blog surfing and found you! If you are interested, go see my fall 2005 fashion trend related site. It pretty much covers fall 2005 fashion trend stuff. I guess you may find something of interest.
It pretty much covers Replica related stuff.
Hey, you really have a great Blog there I'm definately going to
Hey, you have a great blog here! I'm definitely going to bookmark you!

I have a andrew holdent-shirt site called Holden Tees. We're a small company and we sell shirts and stuff.

Come and check it out if you get time

-Holden Tees
I found a great site to buy clothes. I'm 5'10" 250 lbs... You should check it out!
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