Monday, November 5, 2007

BARNEY’S MAIL SACK

From time to time, I like to dip my hand into my mail sack and respond to a devoted reader. This week, I’ve chosen an email that addresses two areas of growing global concern: the environment and fashion.

Dear Barney,

I recently suited up with my best friend in hopes of being as awesome as you, but when we suited up, it was ninety-eight degrees outside and everyone just thought we were crazy. Do you suit up in warm weather, and if so, how do you stay cool?

Tim

Timothy, you’ve touched upon a heated issue: Global Warming. Some members of the “scientific community” would have you believe that human activity is causing global temperatures to increase at a catastrophic and unnatural rate. “Wait, scientists, let me get this straight: You’re telling me it’s gonna be like summer all year round? Oh no! Panic! Let’s all go out and buy pukey hybrid cars and only take showers once a week!” Please.

Curiously, while much of the “research” has focused on promoting scare tactics like “melting ice caps” and “irreversible drought,” few have discussed how a “global warming” would affect people who don’t live in impoverished nations or on ice caps. Your Uncle Barney’s here to talk about what rising temperatures would mean for fashion.

One very welcome outcome would be a decrease in aggregate clothing for the female population. Two thumbs up. But would today’s exceptionally-clad gentlemen have to trade in their fine woolen three-buttons for a neon tank top, denim shorts and flip-flops? Would an entire nation of men suddenly dress like Orlando? No. That would be irresponsible, which is why we must make changes today to protect the fashion environment for our future generations.

Here are five tips on how you can suit up while keeping temperatures down.

  1. SLEEVELESS APRON SHIRT: As it’s rarely acceptable to take off your jacket (what are you, a waiter?), the sleeveless apron shirt is a Stinson summer staple. Giving the appearance of a fully tailored and collared dress shirt, its sleeveless and backless design affords optimum breeze with minimum fabric, cooling your skin without compromising your couture dignity.

  2. CROTCH VENT*: While conventional wisdom claims that heat escapes from the head and hands, if you’re anything like your Uncle Barney, there is one area of the body that runs a little hotter than the rest. A strategic hole placed in the crotch can allow for optimum trade winds both north and south of your equator. Tactical placement of a small taxi fan can maximize your expected draft. NOTE: Sudden movements on tighter-fitting pants can lead to unexpected junk exposure.

  3. DESK PANTS: If you work at a desk job, simply take off your pants. CAUTION: When rocking the top-half-business-bottom-half-party look, remember to reapply your pants before running off to an important meeting.

  4. MESH SUIT: A dangerous but potentially life-changing alternative, the mesh suit cannot be approached haphazardly. It must contain the darkest and smallest diameter mesh fabric possible lest you risk looking like you’re late for a 1980s high school football or rock band practice. Tailored properly, the mesh suit resembles a classic pinstripe while stealthily providing the comfort of a screen-door breeze. Added bonus: The pants provide an exciting, albeit risky alternative to your strip club ensemble. Added added bonus: No more pesky tan lines.

  5. RELOCATE TO ALASKA: It’s cold there. I think there might be penguins. And penguins are the original suit-wearers. If anything can survive a global warming, it’s those little guys.
*Alterations to existing suits should only be performed on your last-ditch, “laundry day” garments…the ones hanging in the back of your suit humidor.