– Strange things affecting our culture.

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A few months ago I noted changes emerging in our culture, primarily by youth who appear to be gravitating towards extreme sports (see “Youth Will Have Its Day”). A few other trends have emerged since I wrote that column, and I believe they are somehow related.

In fashion, we are witnessing the emergence of the “Short Suit” in business. Basically, someone has taken a regular men’s suit, and turned the trousers into shorts, and made short sleeves in the coat. No matter how you slice it, it is like nothing I have seen in corporate America. When I visited Australia years ago during the summer time, I noticed shorts were allowed on men, but executives still wore full suits. Frankly, it looks like something Jethro Bodine of the “Beverly Hillbillies” wore when he tried to enroll in a special school. It simply looked ridiculous and was good for laughs on the show. The same is true with today’s “Short Suit.” How can you have a serious discussion with someone whose hand you want to hold when crossing the street? I haven’t seen the suit yet in a corporate setting, and hopefully I won’t, for if I do I am sure I won’t be able to control myself from bursting out laughing. I also understand there is a women’s version which looks equally ridiculous.

Next, we have body piercings, the concept of which has been around for a long time. We’ve seen ears pierced, belly buttons, tongues, eyebrows, noses, arms, legs, backs, stomachs, even genitalia (which I still do not comprehend). Nevertheless, the latest craze appears to be eye piercings. Some people are adding tiny metallic hearts and other such icons right into the eyeball.

There is also one guy I recently saw who drilled tiny bars over his eyes to make it look like he was wearing a mask. Very strange, all of which borders on mutilation. I’m not sure why they do it as eyesight is something to be cherished, not put into jeopardy. No matter how you slice it though, such piercings are useful for identifying the mentally challenged of the world.

Finally, we have a new phenomenon, “Divorce Parties” (aka “Freedom Fests”) which is essentially a wedding in reverse. Following the termination of the marriage, the bride and groom typically split the cost of the party celebrating the divorce. Most are catered affairs with lavish food and libations. This is rather surprising as I do not hear of too many divorces where anybody has any money left over as the lawyers have taken it all. Perhaps the attorneys pays for it as part of his/her bill. Yea, sure.

Some divorce parties are arranged according to ritual, whereby the father of the bride walks up to the front of the procession where the couple is waiting, and escorts his daughter back down the isle, as a symbol of bringing her home. I can assure you this will not be done in my family where it has been a long standing tradition that, “We do not take daughters back” (or sons for that matter).

The most disturbing thing about Divorce Parties to me, is it is a celebration of failure. It’s not bad enough the divorce rate has skyrocketed over the years in this country, now we are celebrating it thereby discouraging such things as honor, responsibility, and commitment. It would be an ironic twist if it turns out homosexual weddings are more successful and binding than heterosexual affairs.

This is all about low self-esteem and gaining attention to compensate, but I cannot help but think there are better ways of doing so, such as working hard for your company, being a loving and responsible parent and spouse, and trying just a little harder to make the world a better place. However, I suppose these are values from another century, right? I guess it is easier to pierce your eyeball or wear some absurd suit.

Maybe people wouldn’t suffer from low self-esteem if they quit trying to impress the losers they surround themselves with. Maybe it is time to find some new friends. Better yet, take a road trip out of Fantasy Land and see how the real world works. It may just change your perspective and priorities.

Keep the Faith!

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is a writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 30 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at [email protected]

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Copyright © 2014 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

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Listen to Tim on WJTN-AM (News Talk 1240) “The Town Square” with host John Siggins (Mon, Wed, Fri, 12:30-3:00pm Eastern), and KIT-AM 1280 in Yakima, Washington “The Morning News” with hosts Dave Ettl & Lance Tormey (weekdays. 6:00-9:00am Pacific). Or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube.

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