Friday, February 3, 2012


Step One... On your days off, refuse to wear anything but old, stained, thread-bare shorts or jeans with a hole in the crotch.  Claim you have no other clothes.  This will get you out of dinner dates with your wife, cocktails at the neighbor's house, any function at your child's school, as well as church services... leaving you nowhere to go but the sofa... to watch the Military Channel.

Step Two... Remember, black socks are not just for work anymore.  They go with everything!  Wear your black dress socks with shorts and sandals.  Wear them with jeans and white sneakers.  Wear them with pajamas if your feet get cold.  If it's good enough for the airline, it's good enough for every day.

Step Three... (this only applies to pilots with more than 10,000 hours; for the rest of you, there may still be hope).  Do not, under any circumstances, wear anything that was not in fashion when you were in high school or college.  All Air Line Pilots know that fashion trends are just a way to force you to spend your hard earned money on new stuff you don't really need.  There is absolutely nothing wrong with your Member's Only jacket or your Levi's button fly jeans.  If you want to dress like Rick Springfield, I say "Good for you".... (not really).

Step Four... Clean clothes are highly over-rated.  Any good stick and rudder guy knows how to make one uniform shirt last for a four day trip.  Apply that know-how to your daily life!  If you spy your favorite shirt on the bathroom floor (where you dropped it two days ago), pick it up and give it a sniff.  If it does not trigger a gag reflex, it is perfectly acceptable to wear again.

Step Five... If you can no longer button your pants or your uniform blazer, blame it on the tailor that altered your uniform five years ago.  Obviously the problem is with the original alteration job; it's just taken a few years to manifest itself.  It has nothing to do with the amount of sedentary time you spend on the couch (YES! Watching the Military Channel), nor your beer or bacon cheeseburger consumption.  Clearly, the tailor is at fault.  Whatever you do, DO NOT buy a new uniform in a larger size.  Instead insist that you still have a 33 inch waist and make your wife move all of your buttons over and resew them.

Step Six... On the rare occasion, you can't fall back on rule number one, and find yourself forced to dress up for an event, always wear the same outfit.  There is a certain comfort of continuity seeing photos of yourself at events wearing the same trousers, sportcoat and tie.  Christmas parties, cousin's wedding, child's baptism, anniversary parties, nights at the theater.... don't be afraid to rock the same outfit over and over and over again.  Heck, if it looked good once...
Given the rules for dressing like a Pilot, please watch this blog for updates about my forthcoming fashion line for Aviators.  Of course, it will only be marketed through infomercials on the Military Channel and all of the pants will have elasticized waistbands!