Tuesday, June 08, 2004

Ritual uniforms

At times I wonder about uniforms worn for ritual purposes, and about people who like the idea. I wouldn't have any problems with them if they just wore the uniforms themselves and left the rest of us in peace, but, unfortunately, they tend to want other people to wear uniforms as well.

I understand safety-related dress-codes (such as that it is not a good idea to let people wear blouses with very wide hanging sleeves while operating heavy machinery in which such sleeves are likely to be caught). I can also understand uniforms in professions with high visibility where other people need to distinguish employees from everyone else at a glance, such as for example police and flight attendants.

But what the fuck is it about wearing a uniform while doing A in order to put you in the mood for A or to remind you that you are doing A? Don't know about you, but I usually do remember what I am doing. And yes, I am already in the mood for A, otherwise I wouldn't be doing it. If, however, I am not in the mood for A and am doing it out of necessity, wearing the clothes of somebody else's choice is not bloody likely to suddenly put me in the mood.

This rant is now inspired by one of Jukka's comments (no offense) but usually comes up in discussions about school uniforms. People says things like "so that kids would think about school and not about clothes" or "to put kids in the mood for school". I have worn a school uniform for 10 years, thought about clothes then more than ever (mostly about how nice it would be to wear something else), and the only thing that it has ever put me in the mood to do was to burn all those uniforms along with their designers and the people who decided that we had to wear them. Judging from the behavior of my classmates most of them did not get into the proper mood for school, either.

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