24 May, 2004

collar and tie

I'm writing this post in response to The Well Dressed Librarian's post regarding the wearing of ties by library staff. It reminds me of an occasion when I as a Library Assistant decided I needed to lift my profile in the organisation and repair some of the damage my poorly regulated mouth had done to my promotional prospects. The solution was obviously, wear a tie. This lead to patrons, suppliers and contractors assuming that I was the senior staff member. On one occasion while out with my boss a supplier bidding for a large contract with us spent the entire time talking to me because I was a bloke in a tie and my boss was 'just a woman'.

However the tie wearing died a death for a while when the library manager in a casual conversation said to me "you don't earn enough to wear a tie".
How is that for a put down? I believe that his intent was to say that as the council didn't see fit to pay Library staff as much as it did engineers why should we have to put up with the discomfort of ties. Which is a fair point. The tie did come back after I graduated and was pressing for a Librarian's Position but now that I'm in the outback I feel overdressed just wearing long pants and the ties are once again just decorations for the inside of my wardrobe.

1 comment:

WDL said...

It also reminds me of the brit-com "Are You Being Served". That is nonsense to say "you don't earn enough to wear a tie".
I know that patrons often mistake me as a librarian, a)because I work at a library b)I "dress the part" c)I'm visible. I'm not in my office.

On AYBS the staff aren't allowed to wear certain things because of thier rank. I know that neckties are a part of my closets decorations now, but I can't wait until I do get to wear one. I don't think it ostracizes the patrons, but just the opposite. Its a beacon to let the know who can help them.