Men in Suits

To tell you the truth, I’ve never really had much use for men in suits. Maybe because my own father wore a uniform (he was an airline pilot). I suppose to anyone who didn’t know him, he was probably quite handsome in that get-up he wore to fly his planes. But my father was not a nice person. He was not a man you could trust. Nosirreebob. So I’ve never really been able to trust men in suits. That uniform always makes me very suspicious. (I’ve always thought men’s ties surely cut off their humanity & their honesty & common sense, along with their circulation. Don’t you think??)

Then, back in, oh, 1992 or thereabouts, I began attending lots of environmental meetings of all kinds. IJC (International Joint Commission) meetings. RCO (Recycling Council of Ontario) conferences.

I quickly observed that the people in suits seemed to act eerily as though they were already dead.

Their pallor was gray & their words & speeches had no heart & no passion whatsoever. They were unconvincing – even to themselves, I suspect. (You could tell they were really just mouthing the words…you know??)

& so I learned to think of such people as simply “the suits.” Here come the suits.

(Understand, I’ve owned & worn a suit or two of my own, over the years. Some nice ones, even! But I always feel in a suit as though I’m wearing a costume. I don’t really feel like me.)

On the radio a short while ago I could tell just by the dead voice I was hearing (even before he was identified as some bureaucrat or politician or other) that I was listening to a suit. Some guy who was saying utterly unconvincingly that the Canadian government can properly "manage" natural west coast fish stocks & the farmed ones. (Sure, buddy, I believe you! Not. Can you say cod fishery??). Maybe I’d believe you if you weren’t so clearly unable to really convince yourself. (This was on CBC Radio’s ‘As It Happens’ on Thursday, November 1st, 2012 – either that or the Current Review.)

Our world is dying in horrible gasps all around us – or at least it sure looks that way to me.

Even so.

I’m damned if I’m going to listen to these bloody already-dead people in suits tell me stuff they clearly don’t believe themselves. (Suits, btw, of course, can also be women. Women in suits seem to be extra-excited that they’ve managed to win inclusion in the Suit Club. Looks a lot more like golden handcuffs to me, ladies. Whatever…)

Bring me people of passion, pullese. Give me the real deal. I’d rather hear bad news told convincingly by a credible human being, than the bullshit spewed by a dead facsimile of a person in a fancy suit. No matter how expensive that stupid suit happens to be.

Honestly, I really really would.


p.s. but I'm not bitter!! 

p.p.s. weeks later, after many days spent at a nuclear hearing: as a friend said, seems like all those expensive suits are really straitjackets.

p.p.p.s. & even more weeks or months later: just came across this old post, which covers some of the same turf, but with some additional ideas on what I'd do if I ran the world. Inspired by a Council meeting in Pembroke, Ontario in 2010.

‘Quote of the day with this post: “I can’t understand why people are afraid of new ideas, I’m afraid of the old ones.” – John Cage

A few more:

“The most common way people give up their power is by thinking they don’t have any.” Alice Walker

“You can easily judge the character of a man by how he treats those who can do nothing for him.” – James D. Miles

“Do right and you will be conspicuous.” – Mark Twain, American author (1835-1910)

“The purpose of life is a life of purpose.” – Robert Byrne

Healing Protest – A study by psychologists at the University of Sussex in Great Britain has found that taking part in campaigns, demonstrations, strikes, and protests is good for you. Interviews with activists revealed that participants experienced a deep sense of happiness and even euphoria in being involved in protest events.” (pg. 173) &

The Psychotherapeutic Value of Activism – Psychologist James Hillman says that taking action to correct social and economic injustice in the world can serve as a powerful psychotherapy. In some cases, it may even be a more effective way to transmute one’s personal pain than talking about the pain with a therapist.” (pg. 174) (quoted in Rob Brezsny’s Pronoia is the Antidote for Paranoia

“Be truthful, gentle and fearless.” – Gandhi