I’ve written any number of times about Army uniforms. But one of the most common uniforms I saw growing up wasn’t an Army uniform. Technically, it wasn’t even a uniform at all.
Perusing an old Friday Musings from Lex’s archives, the comments oddly devolved into a discussion of guitars, Cadillacs, and
hillybilly music men’s fashion. And I was reminded of an old anecdote of my father that I left in the comments there.
Blazer and grey slacks? Sure, that’s the unofficial uniform for retired Captains. But a pink shirt? Better not be any shipmates around to see him…
I think I’ve told this story before- at a parade outside NAS Whidbey, Dad and 8 other retired Captains gathered before the festivities. All but one were in blue blazers and grey slacks, white shirts, simple ties.
The odd man out? A black suit. He looked at the other Captains and said, “I have to go to a funeral right after this…”
In the era my dad served in, few officers had any great collection of civilian clothing. But every one of them had the blazer/slacks combo. They had to have something for social occasions that called for civilian clothing.
My mother, of course, worried that I didn’t have a suitable wardrobe after my joining the Army, made sure to send me a blue blazer and grey slacks. I didn’t have any occasion to wear them during that first tour, and I can’t really remember many occasions in the next two tours that would call for it. But I eventually moved far enough up the social scale that wearing a tie to any number of events was a requirement. And yes, hanging in my closet right now, is a blue blazer, and grey slacks.