People Are Strange

People are strange. I often see people walking around, both in public and on the clock at their jobs, in the strangest costumes. The guy walking around dressed like a Cowboy straight out of an old Western movie, who has never wrangled a cow or whatever in his life. Who lives in the apartment two doors down from me and doesn’t even know what a pasture smells like. He likes his theme so much he drives the big pickup truck, has a belt buckle the size of Texas (here in Wisconsin), and when he can, he carries a gun on his hip just in case Billy the Kid shows up one day. The woman dressed like some sort of gothic vampire. With the “I <3 ZOMBIES" keychain. White powdered face with heavy black eyeliner. The person whose gender I do not know, with their carefully dyed and styled hair and curated collection of buttons and piercings and shirts they stole from a 90s Xena fan’s closet. The guy in the Businessman costume, not a tuxedo but shirt and tie and "very nice" shoes. The casual Steve in his old hole-filled ripped up T-Shirt and wholly holey jeans. The Princess in her stunning dress and accessories and make-up that had to have taken at least two hours to put together each morning. These are all people I work with. Walking around in costume, covered with the marks of their respective themes. This is fully accepted for the most part. There are exceptions (the redneck likes to poke at the queer one and the casual steve is always ribbing the businessman and whistling at the Princess) but for the most part nobody is ever told to "go home and come back dressed normally". Why? Because that is normal. These are accepted normal ways to dress in modern society, even by supervisors and managers. Don't misunderstand, I'm not judging or criticizing. Actually I think it's pretty great. But, as fucking ALWAYS, my problem is with INCONSISTENCY. GOD I HATE INCONSISTENCY. My brain latches on to it like a life raft and will NOT let it go. If I show up to work today wearing a Wizard robe, a wizard hat, carrying a big magicky-looking staff, driving a car painted to look like a dragon, I'm the weird one. Not the Cowboy, not the Princess, me. What makes one theme more acceptable than another? A robe and hat and stick are much easier to set aside, take far less preparation, and are more likely to make people smile, than a full-on Vampire costume. However, if I go to work like that I have absolutely no doubt I would be sent home to change into "regular clothes". And If I went home and put on a cowboy costume and came back, that would be considered changing into normal clothes. I would like to know who draws these arbitrary lines, and what kind of bribery would be effective on them. I want to see more wizards, more Monks, more goofy Doctor Who outfits, more people dressed like Neo in the Matrix, driving around my workplace in a forklift. Operating the machine next to mine. Fixing my shear when it breaks down. Instead I get about 30 cowboys and a few of the other mentioned types, and that's it, because anything else is somehow "too weird". Worse, at least half of the fucking cowboys are of the openly racist, kill-animals-for-fun variety. At least the guy in the Wizard robe I know I'd probably get along with. Or Kill Me.

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