14 votes

The demise of formal nights on cruises: How dress codes are tearing passengers apart

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51 comments

  1. [41]
    Loire
    Link
    I'm running on very little sleep here so I doubt I am going to be able to present a particularely eloquent argument, but this is a topic thats near-and-dear to my heart so I'm going to take a stab...

    I'm running on very little sleep here so I doubt I am going to be able to present a particularely eloquent argument, but this is a topic thats near-and-dear to my heart so I'm going to take a stab at it.

    I am not really one for nostalgia for a past way of life, but the decay of dress codes within our society as a whole has been one area where I find myself acting like a tutting old man.

    My partner and I enjoy doing fancier things every now and then, burlesque shows, symphonies, theatre, that sort of thing when we can afford it, and even at these places you are starting to see jeans and casual tops. At my office in Houston, where we do business and meet clients, it seems no one wears so much as a dress shirt anymore. You are lucky if your sales team is wearing polos. It's disappointing to say the least. Men specifically are the worst for it.

    Perhaps I'm some sort of classist, but I just don't understand how someone could consider casual/streetwear appropriate for these settings. I don't care how expensive your premium denim is or if you polo has a collar on it, you look like you just rolled in from the pub. Have some respect for yourself and for the institution. This isn't the 1910's, nobody is expecting you to wear a suit for the majority of your life, the least you can do is not erode the minimum standards at the very few areas where formal dress is still expected.

    Formal wear is timeless, and can be purchased at almost every price point. It isn't difficult to find or to wear, and an inability to do so just reeks of sloth.

    14 votes
    1. [2]
      anahata
      Link Parent
      Some people value comfort more than societal expectations or traditions. I outlined this in my comment below. Formalwear is. not. comfortable. It is not easy to wear when you sweat indoors in...

      Perhaps I'm some sort of classist, but I just don't understand how someone could consider casual/streetwear appropriate for these settings. [...] It isn't difficult to find or to wear

      Some people value comfort more than societal expectations or traditions. I outlined this in my comment below. Formalwear is. not. comfortable. It is not easy to wear when you sweat indoors in properly air conditioned rooms. I do not see why I should be uncomfortable to adhere to someone's expectations of me. I don't expect anyone to be uncomfortable to adhere to my expectations of them.

      Have some respect for yourself and for the institution.

      I have plenty of respect for myself and the institution and I show that by making myself comfortable so that I can be properly sociable and loving to those around me instead of preoccupied with thoughts of how I hate what I'm wearing because it feels like a straightjacket-cum-oven.

      You do sound like a tutting old man, here, but that doesn't make you a bad person or anything. I feel you could have addressed the topic a little more congenially, though.

      14 votes
      1. Loire
        (edited )
        Link Parent
        I too am a sweater, so I know where you are coming from on that front. If physically I would suggest you just aren't getting the right suits. Modern suits are extremely comfortable, relatively...

        I too am a sweater, so I know where you are coming from on that front.

        Formalwear is. not. comfortable.

        If physically I would suggest you just aren't getting the right suits. Modern suits are extremely comfortable, relatively speaking. True they aren't t-shirt comfortable, however modern slacks fit as comfortably as any pair of jeans when fitted correctly. This isn't really the thread for that talk however.

        Edit: If mentally uncomfortable, I would ask why you feel uncomfortable in a simple jacket? Is it jist the sweat factor? Do you feel as if you don't look good? Is there a connotation to formal wear you don't agree with?

        I have plenty of respect for [...] the institution and I show that by making myself comfortable so that I can be properly sociable and loving to those around me

        Genuine question: Would you wear casual wear to a funeral or a wedding?

        I feel you could have addressed the topic a little more congenially, though.

        I apologize if you did not find my typing pleasant.

        6 votes
    2. [33]
      ubergeek
      Link Parent
      At least you admit your fault here (Find myself acting like a tutting old man), but honeslty, we don't wear ruffled collars anymore, or 17" long toes on our shoes (Formal wear of yore). The tuxedo...

      At least you admit your fault here (Find myself acting like a tutting old man), but honeslty, we don't wear ruffled collars anymore, or 17" long toes on our shoes (Formal wear of yore). The tuxedo would have been seen as "slovenly work wear" ~ 150 years ago.

      Personally, I'm glad we're getting rid of the "You need to wear X in order to do Y at a desk" notion. Is a product less good because you're account executive isn't wearing a button down shirt?

      10 votes
      1. [32]
        Loire
        Link Parent
        This is a false comparison. Nobody is asking you to wear a historical bit of formal wear, like a ruffled collar. You are acting on the assumption that modern suits and formal dresses haven't been...

        wear ruffled collars anymore, or 17" long toes on our shoes (Formal wear of yore). The tuxedo would have been seen as "slovenly work wear" ~ 150 years ago.

        This is a false comparison. Nobody is asking you to wear a historical bit of formal wear, like a ruffled collar. You are acting on the assumption that modern suits and formal dresses haven't been modernized in design.

        But all of that is beyond the point. You can wear your streetwear 99% of the time, there are zero expectations in modern society. The least you can do is respect the 1% of remaining scenarios where people want to dress up. Don't show up to the symphony wearing jeans, it's like a once a year event for those of us that aren't rich, its not hard to do. The cruise ship has one formal night a week in one single dining room? Don't fucking show up in flip flops, go to any of the other hundreds of dining options a modern cruise ship has.

        Casual wear has already taken over the world, why must you also force yourself on the last bastions for formal wear?

        Personally, I'm glad we're getting rid of the "You need to wear X in order to do Y at a desk" notion.

        People that don't dress hate to hear this but the vast majority of the time you can tell a quite a bit about a person by the way they dress. Certainly there are exceptions, but the Steve Jobs of this world are rare. If you can't take the time to organize your appearance, what else can't you be bothered to do? Where else do you just not care? It's not like a suit is hard to wear. Modern suit pants fit just like regular pants, a modern suit jacket goes on just like any jacket. All you have to do is button up the shirt. If you can't even manage that five minute process, what else can't you manage?

        Is a product less good because you're account executive isn't wearing a button down shirt?

        You don't know if the product is good. The sales executive's job is to convince you that it's the best amongst the 20 other nearly identical products on the market. And here's the thing, we instinctively associate trust, intelligence, success, and knowledge to those that look the part. Studies show that attraction increase a salespersons ability to close. If my sales team isn't willing to dress well to take advantage of that factor (as they aren't) then they aren't doing their job (my company actually has abysmal sales numbers relative to our competitors despite our better product, I can't tell you if dress is an actual factor in that though).

        6 votes
        1. [6]
          vivaria
          (edited )
          Link Parent
          I don't wear a suit, even as an AMAB person, because binary gendered uniforms make me feel incredibly anxious. Would you pressure me to wear a suit anyway? Or, in your eyes, is this a valid...

          If you can't take the time to organize your appearance, what else can't you be bothered to do? Where else do you just not care? It's not like a suit is hard to wear. Modern suit pants fit just like regular pants, a modern suit jacket goes on just like any jacket.

          I don't wear a suit, even as an AMAB person, because binary gendered uniforms make me feel incredibly anxious. Would you pressure me to wear a suit anyway? Or, in your eyes, is this a valid exception? Would you say, "Oh, well, that's different. Don't force yourself to wear a suit if it triggers your dysphoria. That would be too harmful to your mental health."

          But, if I get an exception, why don't other people when they raise their own personal concerns? It's a meaningless, arbitrary line. So, you have to decide under which circumstances you'll prioritise "the personal wellbeing of people you're pressuring to dress a certain way" and which you'll prioritise "the prejudiced instincts of people who will interpret forms of dress a certain way." Right now, your default seems to be hard in the prejudice camp.

          People that don't dress hate to hear this but the vast majority of the time you can tell a quite a bit about a person by the way they dress.

          This just isn't useful thinking. It feels useful, though. When you interpret someone acting in a way that matches a stereotype, it can feel vindicating. "See, look! Stereotypes are useful!" But you're going to be wrong a lot of the time and not even know it, because you're not personally getting to know every human you cast judgment on. Is the benefit where you're right worth the damage you cause when you're wrong? Again, it's fuzzy and grey, but I firmly think the tradeoff isn't worth it. I would rather put in the work to actively catch and challenge internal prejudices rather than risk hurting someone else, even if it flies in the face of social norms.

          10 votes
          1. [3]
            Loire
            Link Parent
            Your reply actually brought up an interesting contradiction (within me) if you don't mind me asking you about? I don't consider modern suits gendered, probably because the female business woman...

            Your reply actually brought up an interesting contradiction (within me) if you don't mind me asking you about?

            I don't consider modern suits gendered, probably because the female business woman look has introduced pantsuits that are basically the same concept with a more "feminine" cut, whereas I do see formal dresses gendered, which I recognize as a biased discrepancy on my part.

            Obviously the point you made concerning exceptions for mental health is true, I simply question how casual wear comes into that. All modern streetwear is, historically speaking, "male" gendered. Until roughly the middle of the century, those who outwardly identified as female, didn't typically wear pants, or t-shirts or anything that wasn't a variation on a dress. Since that time, it has become perfectly normal for those who are female-identifying to wear traditionally male clothing, both formal and casual. That is to say, all clothing, with the noted exception of dresses are now relatively gender neutral.

            I don't know you, so obviously I don't know where you feel comfortable on the spectrum of identity, if anywhere at all. Is there no formal wear at all that would fit your gender identity?

            7 votes
            1. Whom
              Link Parent
              I suspect my answer will be different from Vivaria's, so I'll throw this in: There is no formalwear that will not make me dysphoric. The thing with how dress has become more neutral is that how...

              I suspect my answer will be different from Vivaria's, so I'll throw this in: There is no formalwear that will not make me dysphoric.

              The thing with how dress has become more neutral is that how that how you're read relies heavier-than-ever on the body. If "wearing pants" does not equal "man" anymore, then simply wearing pants doesn't say "I am a man," something else about you has to. Unless you go really far to have some additional cosmetics that scream "man," people will be looking at facial structure, hair, shoulder width, adam's apple, etc. to try and place you.

              I'm a trans woman. The whole category of neutral wear are things that a cis woman could easily pull off without anyone seeing her as anything else, but if I wore them, I'd be taken as male. So, okay, I'm personally not trying to look neutral. My goal is to look pretty similar to how cis women do. I'm an easy case, right? Just put on female-coded clothes! There's still dresses and such that are both formal and unambiguously for women, but that's where the other problem comes in: those things are really difficult to pull off! My fat distribution is decidedly un-feminine, my shoulders are fairly broad, and my skin is visibly rough. While it's not the same absolute loss of dignity that I feel from wearing something coded male, wearing something coded female that I can't pull off is painful. Not only because it's bad to my own standards, but there's also years and years of the "man in a dress" trope to fight against.

              So yeah, that's a massive thing to ask. It's a process which takes many of us years and years to make it through. Where I'm at right now, my options for comfort are so limited that I pretty much exclusively wear huge knit sweaters with skinny jeans, unless I figure I'll be able to wrap myself in a coat most of the day and cover myself enough to wear a tshirt. My case isn't uncommon...clothes are a massive point of stress for people like me, and any place where formal dress is expected is not inclusive. It's not a realistic option.

              7 votes
            2. NaraVara
              Link Parent
              I mean, Billy Porter provided a great example of dressing formally and with no regard to having a gendered uniform. The idea of formal wear for men as lacking in any form of self-expression or as...

              I mean, Billy Porter provided a great example of dressing formally and with no regard to having a gendered uniform. The idea of formal wear for men as lacking in any form of self-expression or as being inherently non-transgressive died in like, the 70s. Just look at Prince or David Bowie.

              1 vote
          2. [2]
            NaraVara
            Link Parent
            So is the standard that people have to wear clothes at all. All norms are "meaningless" and "arbitrary" if you decide to apply this post-modernist "LOL nothing matters" filter but the truth is...

            It's a meaningless, arbitrary line.

            So is the standard that people have to wear clothes at all. All norms are "meaningless" and "arbitrary" if you decide to apply this post-modernist "LOL nothing matters" filter but the truth is people only ever apply that filter selectively.

            Very few people actually believe in this sort of extreme insistence that all social standards and norms be "non-arbitrary." What's the actual line on how frequently you bathe or what the acceptable level of body odor is? What's the "deeper meaning" around having an incest taboo or even a beastiality taboo? What's non-arbitrary about being grossed out by cannibalism?

            There may or may not be arguments for or against any of these, but it's almost always just rationalizing a visceral feeling of moral judgement. Humans are social creatures. Living in a society means understanding and navigating the norms of that society. The choices you make are reactive to, and contingent upon those norms. How you navigate them does say a lot about you. If Prince had put on mascara and there was no gender coding around it, then he wouldn't be making a statement by doing so and he probably wouldn't have done it in the first place.

            2 votes
            1. vivaria
              Link Parent
              That quote was taken out of context. I acknowledge that things are fuzzy, and that where the line is drawn is very dependent on each person's perspective. @Loire defines it one way, and I define...

              That quote was taken out of context.

              It's a meaningless, arbitrary line. So, you have to decide under which circumstances you'll prioritise [...]

              I acknowledge that things are fuzzy, and that where the line is drawn is very dependent on each person's perspective. @Loire defines it one way, and I define it another way. I'm not saying my way is perfect or correct, just that I view things differently.

              1 vote
        2. ubergeek
          Link Parent
          Sigh. The numbers of CEOs I've encountered wearing jeans and a t-shirt under a sports coat are pretty high in any industry. This is exactly what you're doing, except in a micro, rather than macro...

          Sigh. The numbers of CEOs I've encountered wearing jeans and a t-shirt under a sports coat are pretty high in any industry.

          This is a false comparison. Nobody is asking you to wear a historical bit of formal wear, like a ruffled collar. You are acting on the assumption that modern suits and formal dresses haven't been modernized in design.

          This is exactly what you're doing, except in a micro, rather than macro scale. Dress codes and styles of wear change over the years. Butlers don't wear tuxedos anymore while working, either, today, for example.

          10 votes
        3. [6]
          anahata
          Link Parent
          I said this elsewhere, but I just want to emphasize the point so it's clear: I do organize my appearance. I just choose to do so differently than you. This does not mean that I "don't care" about...

          If you can't take the time to organize your appearance, what else can't you be bothered to do? Where else do you just not care?

          I said this elsewhere, but I just want to emphasize the point so it's clear: I do organize my appearance. I just choose to do so differently than you. This does not mean that I "don't care" about other things. I care, rather a lot. The clothes I wear are made from premium fabrics in factories that are certified ethical by independent bodies. But I don't dress up because I find it uncomfortable and indecorous. I'm not a formal person and I do not value the adherence to formality that you do. Impinging your views on others will not endear them to your cause.

          10 votes
          1. [5]
            NaraVara
            Link Parent
            It's fine to not be a formal person, but I would think that means you don't go to formal events. Going to formal events and dressing casually is indecorous and disrespectful to the social context,...

            I'm not a formal person and I do not value the adherence to formality that you do.

            It's fine to not be a formal person, but I would think that means you don't go to formal events. Going to formal events and dressing casually is indecorous and disrespectful to the social context, which is the issue.

            8 votes
            1. [4]
              arp242
              Link Parent
              While I certainly don't want to take anyone's formal-wear event party away, excluding people from their own culture – which is what classical music and theatre are – because they don't want or...

              While I certainly don't want to take anyone's formal-wear event party away, excluding people from their own culture – which is what classical music and theatre are – because they don't want or aren't able to spend money on formal attire is perhaps also not exactly great.

              When the working class complains about "the elite" this is pretty much what they mean.

              9 votes
              1. Loire
                Link Parent
                I am working class, and yet I don't find it egregious to wear the predefined appropriate attire for an event without complaining about "the elites". There are passible polyester suits for as...

                When the working class complains about "the elite" this is pretty much what they mean.

                I am working class, and yet I don't find it egregious to wear the predefined appropriate attire for an event without complaining about "the elites".

                There are passible polyester suits for as little as $49 USD, so the money issue must not supercede the desire issue.

                6 votes
              2. [2]
                NaraVara
                (edited )
                Link Parent
                You realize traditional costume is a pretty integral part of performing ones culture right? No, it usually just means anyone who "well actuallys" them when they make prejudicial statements. For...

                excluding people from their own culture – which is what classical music and theatre are – because they don't want or aren't able to spend money on formal attire is perhaps also not exactly great.

                You realize traditional costume is a pretty integral part of performing ones culture right?

                When the working class complains about "the elite" this is pretty much what they mean.

                No, it usually just means anyone who "well actuallys" them when they make prejudicial statements. For one thing, even feeling like you can strut around and violate norms of dress comes from a place of extraordinary privilege. You'd get fewer dirty looks showing up in jeans and a t-shirt to a formal event than you would dressing in the actual formal wear of a subaltern culture. So stop and think about what that means.

                The rise of casual wear in society didn't come from the bottom up, it came from millionaire CEOs deciding they just couldn't be bothered and gussying it up as some higher moral principle.

                2 votes
                1. monarda
                  Link Parent
                  I am so grateful they did that!

                  it came from millionaire CEOs deciding they just couldn't be bothered

                  I am so grateful they did that!

                  5 votes
        4. burkaman
          Link Parent
          No you can't, but can tell a lot about someone by asking how they judge others.

          you can tell a quite a bit about a person by the way they dress

          No you can't, but can tell a lot about someone by asking how they judge others.

          8 votes
        5. [13]
          NaraVara
          Link Parent
          I really don't understand the aversion people have. At my wedding we had a formal wear dress-code. Not black-tie, but either formal Indian clothes or a suit and tie. Apparently the husband of one...

          Casual wear has already taken over the world, why must you also force yourself on the last bastions for formal wear?

          I really don't understand the aversion people have. At my wedding we had a formal wear dress-code. Not black-tie, but either formal Indian clothes or a suit and tie. Apparently the husband of one of my cousins spent the six months leading up to it complaining about having to wear a tie. He made such a production out of it that his wife had to bribe him to come. This is a grown man we're talking about!

          6 votes
          1. [12]
            vivaria
            Link Parent
            I have a totally different view! :P I really don't understand the aversion people have. At my wedding we had a formal wear dress-code. Not black-tie, but either formal Indian clothes or a suit and...

            I have a totally different view! :P

            I really don't understand the aversion people have. At my wedding we had a formal wear dress-code. Not black-tie, but either formal Indian clothes or a suit and tie. Apparently the guests were so rigid in their adherence to an arbitrary dress code that they repeatedly shamed and pressured the husband of one of my cousins to wear an item of clothing that made him feel anxious and uncomfortable, even in spite of his insistence. His comfort and agency mean so little to them that they had to bribe him to act how they wanted. These are grown people we're talking about!

            3 votes
            1. [3]
              NaraVara
              Link Parent
              If you feel "anxious and uncomfortable" about having to button up a shirt and put a tie on it, I don't know what to tell you man. It makes it sound like you need to learn to toughen up just a bit....

              pparently the guests were so rigid in their adherence to an arbitrary dress code that they repeatedly shamed and pressured the husband of one of my cousins to wear an item of clothing that made him feel anxious and uncomfortable, even in spite of his insistence.

              If you feel "anxious and uncomfortable" about having to button up a shirt and put a tie on it, I don't know what to tell you man. It makes it sound like you need to learn to toughen up just a bit.

              Somehow this argument only ever really gets used to justify being slovenly. If someone showed up to your work dressed in white tie every morning I highly doubt you'd be open to not sniggering behind his back.

              4 votes
              1. [2]
                vivaria
                Link Parent
                This is one of my least favorite phrases in the English language, heh. It's just so cold and insensitive... We look at the world in different ways. From my view, I think you should soften up a...

                It makes it sound like you need to learn to toughen up just a bit.

                This is one of my least favorite phrases in the English language, heh. It's just so cold and insensitive...

                We look at the world in different ways. From my view, I think you should soften up a bit! :P

                If someone showed up to your work dressed in white tie every morning I highly doubt you'd be open to not sniggering behind his back.

                I would never. I've made a point over the past few years to actively catch when I find myself passing judgment on people wearing clothes I don't like. Because... that's just so mean, and shallow? I don't want to be a bully. I want to appreciate people for non-superficial reasons.

                6 votes
                1. NaraVara
                  Link Parent
                  You'll be the first person on the planet to have done so. Even the Dalai Lama enforces a dress code.

                  I want to appreciate people for non-superficial reasons.

                  You'll be the first person on the planet to have done so. Even the Dalai Lama enforces a dress code.

            2. [8]
              frostycakes
              Link Parent
              Seriously. I'm one of those who is happy at the expansion of casual dress culture. I already live in an area long known for casual dress relative to the rest of the country (see the phrase...

              Seriously. I'm one of those who is happy at the expansion of casual dress culture. I already live in an area long known for casual dress relative to the rest of the country (see the phrase "Colorado tuxedo"), and I'm grateful that the expectation to wear clothing that is deeply uncomfortable to me (anything that sits close on my neck makes me feel as if I'm being choked and makes a perpetual itching sensation that does not go away, no matter how long or frequently I wear such clothing) is finally dying off. If you're not nude and not in something that stinks, why should anyone else give two shits what another person is wearing? If one's enjoyment of an event is so fragile that another person's clothing is enough to disrupt it, then one has much bigger issues to address.

              2 votes
              1. [7]
                AugustusFerdinand
                Link Parent
                To counterpoint: If one is so unwilling to compromise for an extremely short amount of time to attend an event that is in no way centered around them that the mere thought of doing so requires...

                If one's enjoyment of an event is so fragile that another person's clothing is enough to disrupt it, then one has much bigger issues to address.

                To counterpoint: If one is so unwilling to compromise for an extremely short amount of time to attend an event that is in no way centered around them that the mere thought of doing so requires coercion to avoid fracturing their fragile little psyche, then one has much bigger issues to address.

                This argument of "but what about me" when an event has nothing to do with you seems to be a product of the participation-ribbon-coddling-helicopter-parent trend of the last few decades. You‡ don't need to be perfectly comfortable in every situation, you don't need to be catered to, acknowledged, or even addressed. At times, possibly quite often, you are there specifically because someone decided that a warm body in your general shape would not be an unwelcome addition. So be that warm body in your general shape and arrive in an expected visual state, because it's not about you.

                ‡ You is not in reference to you specifically or accusatory, but as a way to convey the message without writing it as "one" constantly.

                8 votes
                1. [3]
                  vivaria
                  (edited )
                  Link Parent
                  This might just be a generational thing, but I don't agree that the "participation-ribbon-coddling-helicopter-parent trend" is a bad thing. I think people like you misinterpret what the goals of...

                  This argument of "but what about me" when an event has nothing to do with you seems to be a product of the participation-ribbon-coddling-helicopter-parent trend of the last few decades.

                  This might just be a generational thing, but I don't agree that the "participation-ribbon-coddling-helicopter-parent trend" is a bad thing. I think people like you misinterpret what the goals of this trend are, and are unfairly snarky ("fragile little psyche") towards people who prioritise the comfort and wellbeing of others.

                  You‡ don't need to be perfectly comfortable in every situation, you don't need to be catered to, acknowledged, or even addressed. At times, possibly quite often, you are there specifically because someone decided that a warm body in your general shape would not be an unwelcome addition. So be that warm body in your general shape and arrive in an expected visual state, because it's not about you.

                  If I'm invited to an event where there would be so many people that I'm just another body in a crowd, and my needs are no longer important, I'm likely to just not attend. Like... if I'm not close enough to the person for them to make accommodations... then why am I going out of my way for them? Why attend? I prefer smaller, more tight-knit groups where everyone is close and cares about each other deeply, to the point where we'd go the extra mile for each other.

                  For example, if and when I hold a wedding, it's going to be a low-key event with only my closest friends and family, rather than a 100+ person Event with everyone I've met in my life. I'm going to do my darndest to make accommodations for the small amount of people I invite because I care about them, and those people are deserving of that level of effort. If I'm ever in a position where I have to push someone to do something that they're not comfortable with, then I'd have to stop and reevaluate what I'm doing as a host.

                  4 votes
                  1. [2]
                    AugustusFerdinand
                    Link Parent
                    It likely is a generation thing for you to believe that it isn't a bad thing. Empathy isn't a bad thing or something I am "unfairly snarky" against, it's the attitude that everyone is special. It...

                    I think people like you misinterpret what the goals of this trend are, and are unfairly snarky towards people who prioritise the comfort and wellbeing of others.

                    It likely is a generation thing for you to believe that it isn't a bad thing. Empathy isn't a bad thing or something I am "unfairly snarky" against, it's the attitude that everyone is special. It of course coincided with a rapid rise in social networking/media and the idea that everyone should have an audience. Everyone does and should have a voice, but that doesn't mean they should be heard. For every cohesive thought are a hundred mindless rambles. For every brilliant mind there are a thousand that can't fathom how else to clean a window than by licking it. And that's fine; even in post-scarcity sci-fi superfuture utopias there will be scientists, philosophers, artists, engineers, and people who are mentally exhausted after a day of operating a single button that opens a door to allow fully automated robots enter and exit a charging station. I'm not saying that these people should be insulted, belittled, or anything of the sort. Every person should be given the best possible start in life, but catering to someone that has difficulty understanding why not to put the eggs under the watermelon in the grocery bag or permitting them to be the exception to the rule because they'll have a mental breakdown if their neck is itchy is an issue.

                    Like... if I'm not close enough to the person for them to make accommodations... then why am I going out of my way for them? Why attend?

                    See: "but what about me" statement, thank you for confirmation.

                    Agreeing to the completely benign requests of another when the event does not place you at the center is a symbol of thoughtfulness for those that, in the moment, are more important than you.

                    If I'm invited to an event where there would be so many people that I'm just another body in a crowd, and my needs are no longer important, I'm likely to just not attend. [...] I prefer smaller, more tight-knit groups where everyone is close and cares about each other deeply, to the point where we'd go the extra mile for each other.

                    High number of people does not dictate that you aren't just a warm body. Whether anyone will admit it or not, you have been invited to a tight-knit group at some point as an afterthought of "yeah, they can come too".

                    5 votes
                    1. vivaria
                      Link Parent
                      I find your point of view to be needlessly cold and cruel, and incompatible with important lessons I've learned in recent years. I don't think there's anything else I can add that could make this...

                      I find your point of view to be needlessly cold and cruel, and incompatible with important lessons I've learned in recent years. I don't think there's anything else I can add that could make this conversation progress, so I think I'm going to bow out.

                      8 votes
                2. [3]
                  NaraVara
                  Link Parent
                  Seriously. Dude got to attend what was, by all accounts, a bomb ass party for free. He was happy to avail himself of an open bar, an open buffet, a very well regarded DJ, got to be in an important...

                  To counterpoint: If one is so unwilling to compromise for an extremely short amount of time to attend an event that is in no way centered around them that the mere thought of doing so requires coercion to avoid fracturing their fragile little psyche, then one has much bigger issues to address.

                  Seriously. Dude got to attend what was, by all accounts, a bomb ass party for free. He was happy to avail himself of an open bar, an open buffet, a very well regarded DJ, got to be in an important and "exotic" cultural event that his kids *still talk about two years later." But apparently putting on the tie is the unreasonable burden. I'm not even that mad about it, but it's like you didn't have to come man. Caterers and open bars charge by the head and I'd have been happy to save the money.

                  2 votes
                  1. [2]
                    vivaria
                    Link Parent
                    Those are all very... material things. I would trade any of that for a gathering where everyone there felt safe and comfortable and at ease.

                    Dude got to attend what was, by all accounts, a bomb ass party for free. He was happy to avail himself of an open bar, an open buffet, a very well regarded DJ, got to be in an important and "exotic" cultural event that his kids *still talk about two years later."

                    Those are all very... material things. I would trade any of that for a gathering where everyone there felt safe and comfortable and at ease.

                    3 votes
                    1. NaraVara
                      Link Parent
                      So why not stay in bed then? If you're not "at ease" at an event, why feel like the event is obligated to bend over backwards to accommodate you?

                      I would trade any of that for a gathering where everyone there felt safe and comfortable and at ease.

                      So why not stay in bed then? If you're not "at ease" at an event, why feel like the event is obligated to bend over backwards to accommodate you?

                      3 votes
        6. [2]
          Comment deleted by author
          Link Parent
          1. vivaria
            Link Parent
            These three things are not equivalent. People's lives are so much more complicated that what you can tell from a prejudiced judgment like this.

            badly out of shape

            zero priority on your own health

            [inability to] do the job you're hired for

            These three things are not equivalent. People's lives are so much more complicated that what you can tell from a prejudiced judgment like this.

            10 votes
        7. [4]
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                      1. [3]
                        Deimos
                        (edited )
                        Link Parent
                        Alright, this has just turned into bickering and taking swipes at each other, I'm stopping it here. You obviously fundamentally disagree with each other, and adding more attacks isn't going to...

                        Alright, this has just turned into bickering and taking swipes at each other, I'm stopping it here. You obviously fundamentally disagree with each other, and adding more attacks isn't going to make either of you change your mind.

                        This entire thread isn't too far from getting locked, which is ridiculous over something this trivial.

                        5 votes
                        1. [2]
                          Loire
                          (edited )
                          Link Parent
                          The thread you deleted was the only one that has deviated into bickering. If every topic that promotes heated debate results in a lock then this isn't a discussion forum but a link aggregator and...

                          This thread isn't too far from getting locked, which is ridiculous over something this trivial

                          The thread you deleted was the only one that has deviated into bickering. If every topic that promotes heated debate results in a lock then this isn't a discussion forum but a link aggregator and the comments section should be removed.

                          Personally I have learnt quite a bit on other peoples perspectives concerning this topic based on the back and forths. The conversation has been valuable in those regards.

                          2 votes
                          1. Deimos
                            Link Parent
                            There have been a grand total of 2 threads locked in the last 2 months, with almost 12,000 comments posted over the same period. Saying that we might as well just disable commenting is awfully...

                            There have been a grand total of 2 threads locked in the last 2 months, with almost 12,000 comments posted over the same period. Saying that we might as well just disable commenting is awfully over-dramatic.

                            13 votes
    3. burkaman
      Link Parent
      I would call it a flourishing of dress codes. The range of acceptable clothing has increased dramatically, allowing for more creativity, more personalities, more body types, etc. It's the complete...

      the decay of dress codes

      I would call it a flourishing of dress codes. The range of acceptable clothing has increased dramatically, allowing for more creativity, more personalities, more body types, etc. It's the complete opposite of decay.

      I just don't understand how someone could consider casual/streetwear appropriate

      Why? You don't explain anywhere why you think casual clothes are inappropriate.

      Have some respect for yourself and for the institution

      I don't consider it respectful when people judge me by my attire instead of my actions.

      the least you can do is not erode the minimum standards

      Why not? I want to, they're bad standards.

      Formal wear is timeless

      No it isn't, it changes at least every century. You're witnessing such a change right now.

      reeks of sloth

      Is it lazier to wear the same black suit that everybody else is wearing to every vaguely formal occasion, or to pick something original?

      Why are you even looking at what other people are wearing at the theatre or a work meeting? Why would you care? How does it affect you in any way?

      9 votes
    4. Greg
      Link Parent
      [...] These two statements seem to be at odds - the office is where a lot of people spend the majority of their waking life; if you're judging there, then you're pretty much judging everywhere....

      At my office in Houston, where we do business and meet clients, it seems no one wears so much as a dress shirt anymore. You are lucky if your sales team is wearing polos. It's disappointing to say the least.

      [...]

      This isn't the 1910's, nobody is expecting you to wear a suit for the majority of your life, the least you can do is not erode the minimum standards at the very few areas where formal dress is still expected.

      These two statements seem to be at odds - the office is where a lot of people spend the majority of their waking life; if you're judging there, then you're pretty much judging everywhere.

      More generally, I'm going to take a slightly different tack to the posts I've seen so far. For me, it comes down to the difference between "expected" and "agreed". You have clear expectations and preferences, but they're unilateral - they are your expectations and preferences, and the fact that you're seeing them ignored on a regular basis suggests that a significant proportion of people don't agree with them.

      A wedding, or a formal night on a cruise, or indeed any other voluntary event with a strict dress code makes that agreement available up front: you can accept our dress code, or you can be excluded. Very broadly speaking (for there are many exceptions where a power imbalance might make it difficult to refuse), that's the hosts' right and I fully accept it.

      In public, and in the majority of group social situations we find ourselves in, we don't have such a defined choice and there isn't such a clear delineation of who can and can't enforce a given dress code. Saying that your (and perhaps your attached social group's) expectation of what I should be wearing is valid, if we happen to disagree, is equivalent to saying that my own expectation is invalid. It inevitably raises a question: why does your group's opinion outweigh my own?

      It's not about the clothes, whatever form or tradition those clothes may follow. It's about who does or doesn't have the right to judge me for wearing them.

      7 votes
    5. arp242
      Link Parent
      Who says jeans aren't "appropriate" for the theatre? Looks like you're one of the few people "expecting" this kind of formal dress, so maybe your attitude is the problem here? I could apply a...

      Who says jeans aren't "appropriate" for the theatre? Looks like you're one of the few people "expecting" this kind of formal dress, so maybe your attitude is the problem here? I could apply a rather long list of adjectives for your attitude, none of them especially polite.

      Like it or not, not everyone is going to agree with you, marking these people as "sloths" or "respectless" is ... yeah nah. Then again, I only own jeans so guess I'm just a sloth 🤷‍♂️

      3 votes
    6. [2]
      MimicSquid
      Link Parent
      I inherited a tuxedo in fantastic shape from a grandparent who happened to have been just my size. I wore it to the opera. The only other people in tuxedos were the staff. I felt super awkward.

      I inherited a tuxedo in fantastic shape from a grandparent who happened to have been just my size. I wore it to the opera. The only other people in tuxedos were the staff. I felt super awkward.

      1 vote
  2. [3]
    cptcobalt
    Link
    Wow, this discussion is massively off-topic from the scope of formal nights on cruises! I think people are missing the point that formal nights are just one or two days on your cruise, and that...

    Wow, this discussion is massively off-topic from the scope of formal nights on cruises!

    I think people are missing the point that formal nights are just one or two days on your cruise, and that dress code pretty much only applies to the main dining hall of the cruse. If you don't want to dress up for that, that's fine—but in my opinion you should find somewhere else to dine on the ship for the night. It's not asking for full black tie—it's asking for a jacket and good pants.

    Similarly, I am a foodie, and like to do lots of fine-dining, and this is just about the only time you can get me to dress up. I once went to a fine-dining restaurant with friends not completely dressed for the occasion, and the restaurant seated us a large back room, away from the large main dining space of the restaurant, where we were seated next to a family with a baby in a stroller—it quickly became evident that we were seated in the "problem" room. (Let it be said that our service did not suffer, though.)

    It's not great to expect people to dress up formally all the time—it's been well-discussed in the other off-topic comments here and I agree—but there's really a time and a place for formal wear, like formal night on a cruise, a wedding, or a fine-dining restaurant. A little bit of extra effort gives that much weight to making the situation as special as it can be.

    11 votes
    1. [2]
      Greg
      Link Parent
      Far be it for me to fall back on "they started it", but I'm pretty sure that's what the article author was going for. They copied in some pretty divisive and inflammatory comments from the various...

      Wow, this discussion is massively off-topic from the scope of formal nights on cruises!

      Far be it for me to fall back on "they started it", but I'm pretty sure that's what the article author was going for. They copied in some pretty divisive and inflammatory comments from the various discussions they were quoting!

      I think people are missing the point that formal nights are just one or two days on your cruise, and that dress code pretty much only applies to the main dining hall of the cruse. If you don't want to dress up for that, that's fine—but in my opinion you should find somewhere else to dine on the ship for the night. It's not asking for full black tie—it's asking for a jacket and good pants.

      Yeah, that's something I'm on board with; despite what it might sound like from my comments further up, I can absolutely see the fun in that - it sounds as though there are plenty of options to dine elsewhere, or in the main room at other times, so I'm happy enough to read it as a private party invitation open to those who want to dress formally. Seems like the ultimate conclusion of the article is that there just aren't enough people who'll take up that invitation for it to be worth running on most lines, though.

      Similarly, I am a foodie, and like to do lots of fine-dining, and this is just about the only time you can get me to dress up.

      I'm genuinely torn on this one! I think the way you end the comment by talking about making the situation special is what really resonates with me. If I'm going for a nice meal, I definitely will dress a up little more than my day-to-day, with the goal of looking in the mirror and going "this looks great!" - but that'll pretty much never be classic formalwear. I guess that's perhaps where a lot of this conversation is diverging: there's effort on one axis, and adherence with tradition on the other. Some people care only about effort, others about adherence, some about a combination, and then it's complicated far further by people who see (for example) a lack of adherence but interpret it as lack of effort.

      3 votes
      1. cptcobalt
        Link Parent
        Yeah, this is really well put. I couldn't care less about tradition here. (Even though it's hard to separate the fact that, it's tradition that influences formalwear.) I'll dress up for a...

        I guess that's perhaps where a lot of this conversation is diverging: there's effort on one axis, and adherence with tradition on the other. Some people care only about effort, others about adherence, some about a combination, and then it's complicated far further by people who see (for example) a lack of adherence but interpret it as lack of effort.

        Yeah, this is really well put. I couldn't care less about tradition here. (Even though it's hard to separate the fact that, it's tradition that influences formalwear.) I'll dress up for a situation like this because the effort of doing so will be just one thing that enhances the evening—part of the gestalt.

        1 vote
  3. Deimos
    Link
    Alright, as expected, this topic has just continued devolving quickly. Everyone's already decided which side they're on, has no interest in changing their mind, and mostly just seem to be trying...

    Alright, as expected, this topic has just continued devolving quickly. Everyone's already decided which side they're on, has no interest in changing their mind, and mostly just seem to be trying to tell the other side why their opinion makes them inferior. I see almost no forward momentum in any of the conversations, and am not interested in watching this death-spiral continue, so I'm locking it now.

    10 votes
  4. [4]
    anahata
    Link
    People wear clothes for different reasons. I wear clothes in the summer because it's a social (and legal) requirement (wish I could wear less, you can only take off so much in hot weather). I wear...

    People wear clothes for different reasons. I wear clothes in the summer because it's a social (and legal) requirement (wish I could wear less, you can only take off so much in hot weather). I wear clothes in the winter so I don't freeze, most of the time (we get winter in this part of the world). At all times my goal is to be comfortable and I aim for clothing that I don't notice because it's light, breathable, and conservative in terms of colors so it doesn't stand out. You will notice that nowhere in this paragraph have I mentioned that I wear clothes because of how they look. I wear clothes to satisfy social, biological, and legal requirements. I'm not interested in making a statement with my clothing or anything like that.

    As I said above, I want to be comfortable. Formalwear isn't comfortable and looks weird besides. It never breathes well and is just so heavy and bulky. This is not for lack of trying or being cheap! The last time I wore a suit, I got it custom-tailored at Brooks Brothers. I did not skimp on details or cost; this was a $1600 suit and I spent a few hours at the shop getting measured and so on. I still didn't like it because it was heavy and didn't breathe well (and this was after asking for breathable fabrics). If I can't get something that I like that's custom-tailored for me, from a high-end clothier, I think it's fair to say I just don't like formalwear.

    From this perspective, I can absolutely understand not wanting to dress up. It's not comfortable, it's expensive if done well, and it looks weird. Call me an institution-destroying millennial if you like (obligatory "OK boomer"), but I value my own comfort (top priority) more than I value societal expectations (almost not at all).

    9 votes
    1. [3]
      Loire
      (edited )
      Link Parent
      I'm interested as to why you think a suit looks weird. Its just a jacket and pants with a button up shirt. Or is it specifically the tie thats gets you?

      I'm interested as to why you think a suit looks weird. Its just a jacket and pants with a button up shirt.

      Or is it specifically the tie thats gets you?

      3 votes
      1. [2]
        anahata
        Link Parent
        The tie is a big part of it, the way the lapels sit on the chest, it just feels weird. Maybe I'm coming at this from a history of looking at clothing as male, thus my perception is skewed toward...

        The tie is a big part of it, the way the lapels sit on the chest, it just feels weird. Maybe I'm coming at this from a history of looking at clothing as male, thus my perception is skewed toward clothing that lacks ornamentation.

        2 votes
        1. Loire
          Link Parent
          That's actually very interesting! The tie is obvious as you are literally constricting your neck with a useless item but I've never considered lapels, I suppose, because I can't personally feel...

          That's actually very interesting! The tie is obvious as you are literally constricting your neck with a useless item but I've never considered lapels, I suppose, because I can't personally feel them on the chest.

          2 votes
  5. wundumguy
    Link
    I'm going on a cruise next month and this just reminded me to get my suit dry cleaned! Last time I went on a cruise (years ago) I took a selfie of my wife and I all dressed up for Formal Night,...

    I'm going on a cruise next month and this just reminded me to get my suit dry cleaned! Last time I went on a cruise (years ago) I took a selfie of my wife and I all dressed up for Formal Night, and that was my most-liked picture on Facebook ever. My wife says I look very attractive in a suit, so I'm more than happy to put one on for her.

    I like the formal night, it's a departure from the norm and gives me a great excuse to look my finest. I think cruise lines should keep doing them, because I don't have any other reason to dress up. I don't care what other people wear however, since it doesn't affect me in the slightest, but I guess I would slightly prefer they dress up as well. Formal Night is optional after all.

    5 votes
  6. reese
    Link
    The formalwear debate pales in comparison to the havoc cruises wreak on the environment. I don't mean to hijack the topic, but, casual or formal, you're better off flying to a resort. Besides,...

    The formalwear debate pales in comparison to the havoc cruises wreak on the environment. I don't mean to hijack the topic, but, casual or formal, you're better off flying to a resort. Besides, David Foster Wallace documents other reasons why you may not enjoy cruising. All of these I consider more pressing than whether people wear cufflinks.

    Speaking generally on formal- vs casual-wear, I think there is a time and place for them both. At weddings and funerals and the like, formality indicates thoughtfulness—not conceit. But, change the context and just the opposite is achieved.

    5 votes