A commenter for the BBC says that he and his male colleagues should abandon the tradition of wearing ties.
Is it time for Newsnight men to stop wearing ties? It has always been an utterly useless part of the male wardrobe. But now, it seems to me, the only people who wear the things daily are male politicians, the male reporters who interview them – and dodgy estate agents.
Utterly useless? Exactly! Not to mention damn uncomfortable.
The main reason we remain trussed up is simply the dead hand of convention. House of Commons rules say that men must not appear open-necked. But then the rules also say there are no liars in the House.
Increasingly, ties are simply bits of cloth which we hang around our necks when getting married, attending a funeral, or when called for a job interview. In the days when I used to be sent to report gory murder cases it was always easy to spot the defendant. He was the one picking at the unfamiliar constriction on his neck, in the belief that the judge would think a borrowed outfit made him incapable of malice aforethought.
When I was in college, the mayor of the city, Tucson, declared that, during the summer months, city employees could do more than take off their ties.
Mayor Murphy told them they could drop their business suits altogether in favor of guayaberas, also known as the Mexican wedding shirt.
Evidently, they are still the fashionable alternative for summer business wear in that part of the world.
And if you’ve ever worn a suit during the summer in Southern Arizona (and I have!), you can appreciate the wisdom of the Mayor’s proclamation.