Thursday, 25 April 2013

A high-powered slicked-back pony-tailed bastard power-lunching through life like an Armani-clad bullet-train

I bought a suit the other day. If you've read the other posts, you'll know where I got it from. Normally, I'd proudly bellow about its origins, price tag and relative sturdiness, but in this case I'm overcome with shame.

There's so much psychic baggage associated with wearing a suit, and the price of the thing is just the start.

Yesterday, I went out in my suit to an interview. Afterwards, I strolled around central London for a bit. And I noticed something. Suddenly the other suit-guys, the presumed City traders, were looking at me. Sizing me up. Who's this guy? Do I know this guy? Doesn't he manage the Peterson account? Is that a BHS suit? I'd left the realm of lowly faux-hipster and, for a thrilling half-hour, I was a suit-guy.

I've always wanted to be a suit-wearing yuppie, even though the dodgy ethics of the whole thing clash head-on with my own half-arsed socialist values. A high-powered slicked-back pony-tailed bastard power-lunching through life like an Armani-clad bullet-train, helping to water the ticking time-bomb planted by Regean's market deregulation, and then pissing off scot-free to run for Prime Minister while pulling "Who, me?" faces as the economy burns. This secret desire likely started when I saw American Pyscho, and instead of nodding wisely at the 80s-materialism-taken-to-extremes motif (probably), I went and downloaded some Phil Collins and tracked down Wall Street. So despite being in London instead of New York, and being unemployed instead of having any kind of income whatsoever, I entered the world of the City trader.

It's a fast-paced world, for sure. We suit guys like to force ourselves onto the tube regardless of whether or not there's any physical room left on the train. We also like to run screaming towards the train from the other end of the station as the doors slowly shut, and then almost lose half our face forcing them apart. It's either that, or wait 3 minutes for the next one. It's no co-incidence that the 'Mind The Gap' signs portray a tie-wearing suit-dude tumbling to his death.

Sometimes we like to get together in a big group and collectively blank a Big Issue vendor. Bootstraps, buddy! Other times we like to stare at female office workers until it becomes not just creepy but really rather scary. When caught out, we widen our eyes and menacingly chew (cocaine-flavoured?) gum at them in slack-jawed defiance.

We've also become accustomed to berating fast-food workers. One particular gent entered a closet-sized Subway and demanded to know why there was nowhere to wash his hands. This is discrimination, he said. The soap's good enough for the staff, but not for us. "Are you nervous? Are you scared?" he asked, as he advanced on the manager. I stood agape at this profoundly ridiculous man, and then at the woman behind him, in a "Can you believe this guy?" fashion, until I realised she was his partner and trying her best to turn invisible. How his hands came to be so caked in filth, he didn't say, but in the end he ordered a sandwich and ate the thing, muck-encrusted hands and all. Presumably he picked it up with the napkins. 

Sadly, I completely blew my cover by being unable to stop myself taking photos of famous landmarks, and then posing for photos in front of famous landmarks, and then running around giggling and shouting the theme song from City Guys. I also passed on an overstuffed train, bought a Big Issue, forgot to creep anyone out, and successfully ate at a Subway restaurant without ruining my partner's day.

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