The Circle of Obsolescence

“Come in, we have a spare seat over there”, said the Office Social Worker (OSW). There was a quiet rustling sound of plastic chairs on the beige vinyl floor tiles as space was quickly made available for their newest member. “Don’t worry, we have all experienced what you are going through, with time, the frustration will pass.” 

The Desk Phone took their allocated seat and sat rather forlornly with its handset’s flexible cable coiled in an unsightly knotted mess dangling with an uncaring manner next to the front right chair leg. One sudden jerk of the chair and the cable would have been quickly sliced in half, but the phone didn’t care.   

They all saw the look of pitiful redundancy on the Desk Phone’s face, some of them had reluctantly joined the Circle of Obsolescence (COO) only recently, others had been frequenting the meetings for decades, but their empathy was genuine and sympathetic.

It was now time for the OSW to start the COO meeting, their role being to facilitate a group discussion where each discarded and forgotten item of corporate office yesteryear would introduce themselves in turn and provide an individual life update.   

The Business Hat gleefully started the discussion. My friends of the COO, take heart as I was recently reading an article in the Italian edition of Vogue, and apparently fashion repeats itself, usually every fifteen years! It’s been a much longer time for me, but I’m convinced that I have already seen signs of a reinvigorated hat-life on many a corporate office worker’s head! I’m so convinced of this impending hat rebirth, that I’ve already given myself a detailed brushing down and sprucing in preparation for the occasion. 

I too have seen signs of this fashion trend, said the Business Shirt with an air of excitement in their voice. The other COO members all leaned forward in their chairs to listen. For many years now, I have been residing in a hermit-like manner in the darkest position in the clothes cupboard fighting off a relentless onslaught of preying silverfish and other unwelcome clothing vermin. As you can all see, I have a buttoned collar, slots for cuff-links, and a pocket strategically positioned over the wearer’s left breast. And guess what, you will never believe it, but I was actually worn yesterday!! The sound of sighs, shock and respect, gleefully permeated the room from all those seated. 

As soon as the Shirt had concluded, a rapid rustling of metal was heard in the base of the chair occupied by the Cufflinks who supported the assertions of the Shirt thereby adding credibility to their positive proclamation. 

This prompted the Neck-Tie, and even the Bow-tie, to quickly unravel in their chairs as they too sensed, and willed, their possible re-participation back into corporate office life. 

However, many other members of the COO continued to have a glum look on their faces as they regrettably knew that their days were numbered as technology, not fashion, had unfortunately passed them by. These chairs were occupied by the Blackberry phone, it’s cousin the Nokia, and now by the matriarchal Desk Phone. Some of them would survive as they resided alone on a cold, dusty, glass shelf in a museum, but for the rest, their longevity seemed doomed.

The eyes of the Business Shirt saw the look of despair on his long sitting technology challenged telephonic friends and tried to cheer them up with the following comment. “My COO friends, don’t despair. Fashion does repeat itself, but it also recycles those that were once deemed good and useful into something even better. Have no doubt, that you will all be reincarnated into an office item that is most worthy of your composition. It will happen to us all….one day.”

The OSW then closed the meeting and wondered, who next from the Corporate Office would attending, and how many chairs would be required? Time would tell.  

Seasonal Dress Solutions for the Discerning Corporate Woman

Smile

In the continuing series of fashion solutions for the corporate woman*, another “Eureka Moment” prevailed on me when walking in Melbourne this afternoon as I noticed a fellow walker struggling with an inappropriate clothing choice.

For those of you that are unaccustomed to the nuances of the weather in this cosmopolitan and dynamic worldly city, let me educate you on the meteorological wonders that commonly prevail with predictable uncertainty. Each day is one of climatic surprise. All four seasons may eventuate, or three of them may be forcefully overpowered with one season that is feeling quite dominant and wanting to make an impression on the unwary female population. As such, your first clothing selection based on your initial weather observations early in the morning may lead to catastrophic clothing wardrobe malfunctions later that day.

Yes, there is an answer. I can already hear the sighs of womanly relief (and from your supportive male colleagues).

What about the following creative wardrobe solutions:

1. The Warming Patch
Why not have “warming patches” sewn into strategic locations in the dress which can be quickly heated via a small battery surreptitiously hidden in a concealed pocket? When it gets cold, with a simple flick of a switch, body heating will immediately prevail.

2. Body Atomiser
On those hot days when the dress fabric is a tad too thick, why not use an all over body atomiser where a fine water particle mist is released thereby initiating a cooling feeling for the individual? A small atomiser nozzle could be built into the side rims of the wearer’s sunglasses or their fashionable cap?

3. Zips
A dress comprised of detachable sections (sleeves, skirt, back, etc) that could be removed (or added to) via the simple use of discrete zips. When the weather gets too hot, just zip off those dress sections that are too heavy and warm, or if a cold wind necessitates additional warm, just zip on an extra piece of clothing?

4. Emergency Solution
If all else fails, what about having a high pitched customised whistle that only your large specially trained fashion dog can hear and respond to within minutes of your plea for help. Upon the whistle activation, the fashion dog leaps out from the centrally located corporate dog kennel fully equipped with a suitable change of clothes, complete with a portable tent for privacy whilst changing your attire.

Now for all you fashion designers reading this blog post (of which I’m sure there are many), don’t forget where you first heard of these remarkable ideas for the corporate woman as I’m sure they will provide an innovation shift in the wardrobe of many a discerning lady. Vogue Magazine, I look forward to my invitation to the Melbourne Fashion Parade!

* https://thinkingfuturethoughts.wordpress.com/2015/02/05/corporate-dress-design-with-wind-gust-resistance/

The “Jane Award”

Vogue

“Not again!”, I said as the camera flashes went off in unison leading to yet another ritual of blinding light in the office meeting room. It was becoming an all too familiar event, but it was one that we all relished with eager anticipation, afterall, she is a celebrity.

She did look rather stunning I thought to myself, in her chic white business attire, but she deserves the attention. It was also really inspiring seeing her on the cover of the December edition of Vogue* magazine.

However, what I loved the most about her, was that she still just accepted her usual position in the organization and went about her duties without any fuss or change in attitude or demeanor. One day, I just hope I get to be like her and the many others in the company that have achieved her lofty status.

Her business card says it all and our company utilises these rare and key employees to their maximum potential. After all, without these critical staff, we wouldn’t be enjoying the business success that we have now all become accustomed to on a daily occurrence.

What, you didn’t get a chance to read her business card? My apologies let me hand it over and read it to you. Her name is Jane Brown, her job title is “Creative Thinker”.

Yes……”Creative Thinker”.

So what exactly does Jane Brown do, you may ask? Well, Jane, and the other employees just like her, are allowed to…..think. They are provided time in their job routine to contemplate new ideas and solutions for the business. They are encouraged to network with their work colleagues, to talk to other organizations, to share thoughts and to develop other left field, non-work related dissertations. Ideas related to the future needs of the business are strongly encouraged; in fact, they are demanded by our senior management.

So why is Jane on the cover of Vogue* you may ask? Simple, the process of innovation has no boundaries and can be utilised in all activities that we do, in this instance, Jane is seen as a role model to encourage everyone to think just that little bit differently.

I’m sure that your organization has many people just like “Jane”. These people should be recognised and applauded for their creativity. Who knows, it might just lead to the instigation of the “Jane Awards” in your corporate work environment?

*Yes, Edwina McCann (Editor-In-Chief, Vogue Australia), this is fiction, Jane Brown is not a real person, but just image if she was!!

%d bloggers like this: