Dress for Success

David Wheeler (who I very much respect — see his work on OpenFormula) has written a nice article on what the well-dressed hacker should wear when going for success.

And… I agree. Kind of. Of course, a tie only gets in the way when coding, and is rather unhygienic. But I still like to be a natty dresser, I don’t wear t-shirts except in summer, as sleep-wear. And I take a shower every morning, sometimes an additional bath in the evening, I comb my hair and beard and all that.

But there’s a problem: ordinary clothes, as found in ordinary shops are horribly buggy. Socks with seams that cut through your toes if you wear shoes. Shoes that cannot be resoled by even the most competent cobbler. Trousers that lose their form after their first encounter with the washing machine (and that washing machine has usability issues worse than KDE, Gnome and mwm combined). Pulls that seem to grow faster than their owner when he was a toddler. The list goes on and on. Besides, I don’t fit off-the-rack clothes very well: what fits around my neck doesn’t fit my arms. Fortunately, after a dozen years of marriage, I don’t have theĀ  problem anymore that my waist belongs in the children’s department my legs have long out-grown. Embonpoint is the watchword nowadays. (Only not really nowadays — seven weeks of Lent have taken their toll.). And I’m very particular about my shirts.

So… Natty I may want to be, with the full complement of clothes: morning suit, mourning suit, quiet twill, understated gray, soup & fish, tweed for walking tours and all that, but one has to realize that whatever one buys ready-made will never really fit. And a business suit that doesn’t fit is a hoot: whether it’s C&A or Armani, Brooks Brothers or We. The only real option is made-to-measure. Which, unfortunately, is out of reach for this impecunious hacker… But I can drool, can’t I. Shirts that fit… Tell you what, David, as soon as I can afford it, I’ll dress to please Peter Quinn! Otherwise, it’s not worth it, taking the effort.