Playful, Pius or Remembered Stuff

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Tuesday, June 19, 2012

In Defense of Neckties

I haven't published lately. Sorry for that. Maybe there's no one out there looking for my posts, and my comment is irrelevant. But just in case, here is a vintage post that I find amusing, and I hope you may too. Being a minister, decorum often dictates that I wear a necktie. Retirement tends to relax that demand somewhat, and living in southern California grants everyone a few more degrees of informality. Nevertheless there are occasions when a tie must be worn. And on those occasions I wear a tie with playful design, and it makes it worth the ordeal just to be a trifle rebellious. Nothing too outrageous, just Winnie the Poo or Mickey Mouse. I especially like Charlie Brown characters and Snoopy playing tennis or something like that.

My friend, Jay Adams, shamelessly rails against this timeless convention as the sole reason women outlive men. He claims that men slowly choke themselves to death with this silky rag. I don’t know if Insurance companies have made it an actual study, but my personal anecdotal testimony claims at least two good reasons to wear a tie (in spite of the risk).

The first reason is one I discovered as a young father. By the time I had two boys who liked to play “boys climb on daddy” I had observed the first practical use of the cravat. Carrying a two-year old boy on my arm was a safer proposition when he used my necktie as a sort of trolley strap. And when I held two little boys at the same time, and they insisted, “Daddy, run with us” that trolley strap was quite useful.

Well those days are long gone. I am not the man I was then. In fact I am closer to being twice the man I was then. But that is a circumstance that occasioned the discovery of the second practical use of neckties by this corpulent clergyman. It makes a great cover for the strained buttons down the front of my shirt. It seems that a tie, like love, can cover a multitude of sins.

Actually there is another very practical use of a tie that I have found, but it does not involve the wearing of it as a fashion statement around the neck. Old miserable ties make the perfect bond for a three legged race at the Sunday School Picnic. The tie is just long enough to bind the legs of these contestants, and yet it is soft enough so as not to cut into the flesh of rambunctious runners.

Ties, like other fashions, run in cycles. The wide tie will occasionally experience a revival, as will the narrow one. You may like to save for those fashion revivals. But once you commit your tie to the three-legged race, it is not likely to see another fashionable day.


  1. Snoopy ties, yay! Three cheers for Snoopy!!

  2. The clerical collar is so much more comfortable Dad, but it does not come with Snoopy or Winnie the Pooh.

  3. I myself have 42 ties, some I have acquired from my father, some from work and many as gifts. Some are skinny and some are wide. Now if I could only learn to tie them.

  4. I have just been given an electric red tie with Santa and a tinny rendition of Santa Claus is coming to town. It reminded me of this old post.