Saturday, April 15, 2023

The Fast Casual Society

In 2001, I started working at what used to be called a “white shoe” law firm, an anachronistic reference to the white buckskin shoes worn by Ivy League men of a bygone age. By the time I got there, the attorneys were wearing black or dark brown oxfords or brogues, but the code, while different, was enforced with equal rigidity. One afternoon, having been at the firm without sleep since the previous night—about 30 hours—I staggered onto the elevator with my collar open and my tie loose. An older partner turned and spoke to me in a voice that seemed to come from the late nineteenth century: “Young man, we have not met, but I assume you are employed by this firm. You will find that we do not open the collars of our shirts before 5 P.M., and certainly not in the public spaces, where we might easily be observed by a client.”

Read the rest of the Jonathan Clarke article in City Journal.

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