What Were We Thinking? A Look Back at Men’s Fashion in the 1950s

What Were We Thinking? A Look Back at Men’s Fashion in the 1950s

We’re experiencing a dose of Indian Summer in the Big Apple this week. This morning, dressed in a suit and tie, I stood for 20 minutes on a packed subway platform (are you surprised?), sweating like I had just run a kilometer. It could have been worse. It could be 1950s, and I could be wearing a suit, well—everywhere.

jim anderson

“I think I’ll lounge around dressed just like this.”

Seriously, I know we are all products of our times, but come on! Have you ever seen pictures of people out on the town back then? The men wore suits and ties everywhere. There must have been nothing like going to a day baseball game in August when it was 92 degrees wearing a wool suit and tie. And it must have been awesome strolling down to the corner cafe for a cup of hot joe on a July weekend morning wearing one’s Sunday best.

For crying out loud, those idiots didn’t even have enough sense to take off their suits when they got home! Which one among us men doesn’t rip off his suit and tie the second he gets home, if he hasn’t already done so as soon as he leaves the office? I swear, just watching film clips of events or television shows from that era like I Love Lucy and Father Knows Best makes me start sweating profusely—even in the wintertime. What do you think the average household’s biggest expense items were in those days? Correct! Deodorant and air freshener.

So now, as I sit here in flip-flops, a faded orange shirt that says “Beer Delivery Guy” and ripped gym shorts, I’m breathing a sigh of relief. Thank goodness for progress.

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