When I was a kid, we went to church every Sunday. As was the custom for male children in those days, I had to go dressed in a jacket and tie. My ties were clip-ons, until at about age 7, I balked: “I want a real tie, like Dad has. One that I can tie myself.”
Well, my parents got me a tie. It was navy blue, and Dad taught me to tie it by myself. I wore it to church for years, when I was a kid.
Ties aren’t very popular any more, and neither is church. But I’m curious: gentlemen of the Dope who still wear ties, do you remember your first real tie? One that you could tie by yourself?
My first tie was a cotton knit maroon colored affair with a squared off bottom. Like this, aside from the color. I don’t even remember wearing it so much as I remember its constant presence in my socks 'n underwear drawer. The bottom was a bit frayed though from wear so it must have been worn even if I can’t remember the events.
Barely, just some blue thing. I was a little kid, it was small. As a teenager I wore my father’s ties. As an adult I have a few that I shared with my sons. It’s hard for me to find a long enough tie, I have a thick neck and a large torso grotesquely out of proportion to my stubby legs. A full windsor knot leaves the tie half way down my chest so I’ve forgotten how to tie one that way.
I’m not a gentleman (not even a man) but I wore a tie to high school fairly regularly. It was a thin grey leather tie. There was also a black and white piano keys one. It was the 80s and I was 14 - we’ll blame my fashion choices on those facts…
The first tie that was mine and not one of my dad’s was when I received a purple tie from Safeway in 1996 as part of my uniform. I had my father tie it and it stayed tied in that same knot for at least the next 6 years. I don’t work for Safeway anymore but I still have that tie (it’s no longer in the same knot).
I’m not a gentleman, but on my way to work this morning I saw a little boy, probably four years old, standing on the sidewalk wearing a perfect little gray suit with a white button down shirt. His mother was kneeling in front of him trying to tie his tie, and he was bawling his eyes out. I wonder if he’ll remember that as his first tie.
Once I went to court and my firm’s client, a 20-something guy whose mother was paying us to represent him in traffic court, had just bought his first tie ever and hadn’t the foggiest on how to tie it. My boss tasked me with getting it tied. As I can tie my own tie in my sleep but can’t visualize how to do it on someone else (backwards!) I ended up tying it around my own neck, loosening it partially, handing it to the client, and showing how to re-tighten it.