You’re Not Going Out In That Are You?

Dear Joseph,

My mom had a unique way of getting us to think about what we where wearing.

When I would be heading out the door to some event, she would give me a look over and then say, “You’re not going out in that are you?” Translation, you should really think about changing into something else more appropriate.

At the time, I wondered why it was so important to my mom to “dress for success.” But as I look back on it, her challenge to me was more less about me looking good than it was about me taking time to think about how I could be my best around others and appropriate for the occasion.

I think she was trying to help me grow from trying to get away with as much as possible, to trying to raise my level of behavior and be an example for others to do the same.

Sometimes it was easier than at other times.  But in the end, it was a lesson that paid big dividends…It helped me catch your mom.


Rule 21: Good manners adapt to the type of place and people you are around. You do not act the same with a clown and with a prince.

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