My father is a very trendy guy. He dresses appropriately for his age and always looks very elegant. He is also very aware of the latest trends in everything. A few years ago he set off on a one-man crusade against men who wear pleated pants. Armed with knowledge from GQ and The New York Times, he denounces anyone who dares to wear pleated pants or, god forbid, a polo tucked in. Because he lives in the Middle East and interacts mostly with people whose pants you cannot see, he doesn’t get a lot of opportunity to check whether people are following this trend or not. He boldly goes to work wearing flat front khakis and that’s that.
When he came to visit me in DC, we found that most, if certainly not all,men were conforming to the flat-front trend. Then after two days here he got on a plane to Houston. To hear my father tell the story, not only have flat-front pants not arrived in Houston, but men are still wearing cellphones in holsters and polo shirts tucked in. Terrible. Unforgivable. But you know, it’s Houston. I suspect nobody there has a blog like this.
Because I am not a man and I dress well, I am largely exempt from my father’s advice on the latest trend. Or so I thought.
We were walking in Bethesda and a young guy we were approaching to ask for directions* sneezed. The sneezing guy also didn’t know where the place was, and we moved on. When we were a few steps from the guy my dad asked me “how do you sneeze? do you know how these younger kids sneeze now?” I burst out laughing. I couldn’t believe my dad actually had information about trends in sneezing. I said I just sneezed and that if someone else around me sneezes I say “salud” because I can’t pronounce “gesundheit.” Then my dad explained: the latest trend in sneezing is sneezing into your sleeve because it prevents virus from landing in your hands and being spread to the next thing you touch. Then he also explained that he is not a fan of this trend because he doesn’t want to get his sleeves dirty.
So there you have it. Free advice from my dad. Wear flat-front pants if you are a guy. Sneeze into your sleeve. Of course if you actually met him in person he would give you much better advice, but this is all you get for now.
* Bethesda is not DC. I don’t know my way around there.