After nearly ten years, I finally decided it was time to retire my suit. Yes, that suit that I wore to all major events I attended for the last decade was running out of time. Or at least in my case, running out of room in the waist*. Mercifully, just about the time I made this decision Macy's decided to have a huge sale on men's suits. So I was able to go in and buy *two* suits for about 20% less than I paid for my one suit ten years ago**.
But I made one mistake when I arrived at the store - I didn't find the men's suits section on my own, but instead, asked for direction when I was in the general area. What I failed to remember is that when you are in the "men's suit suburbs" those salesfolks will take advantage of any opportunity to score the commission on men's suits. Even on sale, they are a good chunk of change. The woman who's trap I fell into was more than happy to direct me to the men's suits, and was very friendly. But I became suspicious when she began to say that every single suit I was looking at looked "Great!", occasionally coupled with an "Oh that is beautiful fabric". Even the Kenneth Cole suit I tried on where the bottom of the jacket flared out like a skirt.
So I eventually just started saying "No" to everything she brought over that *I* didn't like. This included two "house" brands with vaguely italian-sounding names. I had an issue with the labels, which read "[House Brand Name] exclusively for Macy's". I mean, I get the whole generic/store brand label thing. Sometimes, I think it makes a lot of sense***, but for men's fashions, it makes me think of a vintage 1970's leisure suit I bought for a 70's party when I lived in Cleveland****. I bought it with a buddy of mine, who bought a different suit...which had a label which read...
"[House Brand Name] exclusively for JCPenny"
It was so silly that we spent most of the party making fun of the idea of anything JCPenny being "exclusive". So Naturally I couldn't possibly buy the house branded suits. Finally I ended up making my own way back and picking out a nice gray Calvin Klein and an even nicer black Hugo Boss. Even if these suits last me for the rest of my days, at least nobody will make fun of my suits after I'm dead and they're buying my clothes for a "2000's" theme party.
Still, I'm pretty proud of myself. I did it all with only a single, semi-panicked phone call to the GF. I seriously considered sending her cell phone pics for evaluation, but I figured that would probably cost me man-points.
* DAMN YOU MID-30's METABOLISM!!!!
** And think, that was in 1998 dollars!
*** Archer Farms, anyone?
**** Which, come to think of it, probably doesn't fit anymore either...sigh...