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Why I Dress Up by Joe Petrisko

Remember "dress up" day at school when you were a kid? Remember how everyone always seemed to look forward to that one day at school when you could put on those really special clothes of yours that made you look so great? It seems a shame that special day with those special clothes has gone the way of school pictures. Very few people seem to want to bother "dressing up" for an event any more. The practice of dressing up has, for many people, seemingly been relegated, along with etiquette, to the attic of no-longer-used items from our past.

Etiquette is a quality which, unfortunately, seems virtually non-existent in our society today. "Etiquette", contrary to the belief of many, does not equate to being stuffy or putting on airs, but is actually a demonstration of consideration and courtesy to those around us - treating others, if you will, as we ourselves would wish to be treated. This lack of consideration and courtesy can be traced to a society which is strongly egocentric ("me first"); overworked, overly stressed-out parents who feel they don't have the time, energy or motivation to teach etiquette to their children; an attitude of "why should I - no one else does it, anyway"; or identification of etiquette with a bygone Victorian era with its class hierarchies and social strata. None of these proffered excuses, however (and in reality, that's all they are - excuses) justifies the lack of common consideration and courtesy we too often see today.

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