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#358335 - 08/24/07 06:12 PM Uniforms & Consequences
JMWcorwin Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 07/13/07
Posts: 731
Loc: SoCal, USA
Iíve seen many posts here, heated arguments usually, on the topic of conflict avoidance. In reading some of them, I thought to post my thoughts on some of the preliminary things that can invite/discourage conflict; uniforms in particular.

We all wear them, whether we know it or not. My martial arts training as well as sociology classes in college have brought me to the simple conclusion that they all have consequences as well. What we wear, how we walk, the type of car we drive, and even the stickers we put on them all convey solid messages to others. Theyíre not always correctly interpreted, but theyíre there nonetheless.

If you dress like a gangbanger, you will likely be treated as such by those around you. You will invite conflict, possibly what many here have labeled harassment from law enforcement, and even drive away people who might normally have given you help: job offers, ride to school, etc. Alternatively, if you honestly donít want to have these conflicts, you can choose not to wear that uniform. The same thing goes with the way you carry yourself, the way you speak, the way you write on Internet forums, and even the type of car you drive. This works in all directions; Iím not trying to single out the hip hop/gangster rap style of dress, but itís the simplest example I can think of.

Now, take a look at yourself. What do you see? If Iím walking down the street in your direction will I immediately be on my guard, want to say hi, maybe want to avoid you entirely? Because of my training and upbringing, I make a conscious effort to blend in to the scenery as much as possible. As a result, I tend to draw little conflict. And, due to my observational skills of others, I find that I have become very good at spotting trouble ahead of time,,, and avoiding those places and people. Iím not saying my observations are always right. Theyíre not. Just as othersí observations about me are not always right. But, if you bet the clichť, youíll never be disappointed.

Everyone has the right to dress and speak and act however they want. (within reason) But, if you wear the uniform, be prepared to accept the consequences of that uniform.

- End sermon.
_________________________
There are no PERFECT techniques, only perfect execution for the situation at hand. ~Corwin

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#358336 - 08/24/07 10:06 PM Re: Uniforms & Consequences [Re: JMWcorwin]
Taison Offline
The Forum Dragon
Professional Poster

Registered: 09/06/05
Posts: 3629
Loc: BKK, Thailand
Stop talking about my jeans, ok?

I only wear them on Saturday and Sundays! I wear whatever bling bling I want on those two days. I am certified Calvin Klein suit wearer on weekdays!

Now STOP talking about my jeans!!

-Taison out
_________________________
I got two fists.. Don't make me use my head as well!

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#358337 - 08/25/07 08:45 AM Re: Uniforms & Consequences [Re: JMWcorwin]
MattJ Offline
Free Rhinoplasty!
Prolific

Registered: 11/25/04
Posts: 15634
Loc: York PA. USA
Good post, JMW. There is a fine line between expressing yourself and over-doing it.
_________________________
"In case you ever wondered what it's like to be knocked out, it's like waking up from a nightmare only to discover it wasn't a dream." -Forrest Griffin

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#358338 - 08/27/07 03:38 PM Re: Uniforms & Consequences [Re: MattJ]
harlan Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 07/31/04
Posts: 6664
Loc: Amherst, MA
Thanks for the vent. You don't know how often I have to restrain myself from running over fat women bicyclists, clad in those skin-tight lycra outfits. LOL!

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#358339 - 08/27/07 04:11 PM Re: Uniforms & Consequences [Re: Taison]
JMWcorwin Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 07/13/07
Posts: 731
Loc: SoCal, USA
I'll give you a funny story on that one:

I have a friend who's been wearing his pants around his thighs his whole life. ( you know what I'm talking about ) It has actually caused damage to his hips and back because he has had to walk with his knees pronated slightly all those years to keep his pants from falling off. I'm serious, this is not a joke. He actually has structural problems now from his 'gangsta lean' walk.

But yeah, sure, wear what u like peeps.
_________________________
There are no PERFECT techniques, only perfect execution for the situation at hand. ~Corwin

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#358340 - 08/27/07 04:23 PM Re: Uniforms & Consequences [Re: JMWcorwin]
Dereck Offline
Prolific

Registered: 10/04/04
Posts: 10413
Loc: Great White North
Nice post Corwin and I agree.

I have no idea what you would see in me because it isn't just about the uniform. It is how you hold yourself, how you take care of yourself (hair, clean cut, etc). It can also be about your facial features, clenched fists, speed you are walking, etc.

During business days I'm dress pants/shirt or wearing kakis and a nice shirt; both with black dress shoes. On my time I'm usually in jeans (no holes) and a shirt, preferably a tight T-Shirt to accentuate my muscles (I'm a weight lifter). I have a clean shaven head though come the middle or end of the week I may have some stubble due to laziness. My wife says I look mean sometimes ... and probably that day I was. I've been told I'm very approachable and it is true, especially by kids. So with that, some features make me stand out while it is not necessarily a fashion statement as some.

Now how would one see me riding my sports bike? Some young punk who likes to drive fast and live dangerously? Has no care in the world for other drivers? Spoiled? Then I take off my helmet and you see a bald 38 year old? Not what you thought right? (And don't say going through a mid life crisis )

You are right, we perceive people by their appearances and we have to accept that is how we are going to be perceived. It may be wrong and appearances can be deceiving, but that is a fact. If I'm standing over a body with a gun and blood on my hands then I'm am going to be suspect until proven otherwise ... however people are not going to take that time to discover this for appearance sake.

I know I've been proven wrong about some people's appearance but more times then not I've been right. When the odds are against you sometimes you don't get a second chance to make a first impression.
_________________________
"IF I COME ... I'M BRINGING THE PAIN WITH ME"

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#358341 - 08/27/07 05:43 PM Re: Uniforms & Consequences [Re: JMWcorwin]
Neko456 Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 01/18/05
Posts: 3260
Loc: Midwest City, Ok, USA
This is the way the world is we sterotype and try to stop self expression if its different then our own. I know a group of motorcyclist they plan a trip annually. When on the road they look the part, they act the part, they dress the part, they even smell the part like beer and marijunana. They have their motorcycle Mama's and some are armed with guuns and knifes. This group of wild Rebels without a cause pull up on you 320-30 deepe, as the sun about to go down. Do you run to the car and lock yourself fearing for your life or leave the car and run for the hills. If you do you are runniung from a group of weekend warriors that could probbaly help you maybe buying you a set of tires. They are business men and women just expressing a wild side.

Women go through this a lot and some know how to work it. They tell me, If they want to dance all night they will wear their Vamp outfit. They dance & drink free all night, of course they are asked to go home with about 30 different guys. If they want a quite night they dress in business attire have a nice drink watch the crowd maybe dance once or twice and go home without a hassle. Some women know how to work the system or what men want to see. Is that fair, I don't think so.

Now there are some situations that you are to be warned about bald or hairy white men with 4 leaf clovers or Swastika or SS tatooted on their body or Black or Latino men in bandanas with teardrops tatooted in the corner of their eye. These are signs that you maybe in danger these are things that you don't take off these guys are living this life.

Hard as it is try not streotype. Know the signs of real danger, and alway be aware of your surroundings. We have enough to look out for without make stuff up. My 2 cent.

We have to sell ourselves everyday, but that shouldn't stop us for living and being all that we want to be on the weekend or private time.
_________________________
DBAckerson

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#358342 - 08/27/07 06:19 PM Re: Uniforms & Consequences [Re: Neko456]
JMWcorwin Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 07/13/07
Posts: 731
Loc: SoCal, USA
Quote:

Hard as it is try not streotype. Know the signs of real danger, and alway be aware of your surroundings. We have enough to look out for without make stuff up. My 2 cent.

We have to sell ourselves everyday, but that shouldn't stop us for living and being all that we want to be on the weekend or private time.




You're absolutely right. Thanks for the comments. Just to clarify, I wasn't advocating stereotyping or advising anyone to turn and run from people who look a certain way. I was speaking more on the subject that, like it or not, we are judged by how we look. Is it right? Probably not. But it is the way of the world. So, as I said before, everyone should be free to be what they want. I was merely advising people to be aware of the consequences those things might incur.
_________________________
There are no PERFECT techniques, only perfect execution for the situation at hand. ~Corwin

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#358343 - 08/27/07 06:25 PM Re: Uniforms & Consequences [Re: JMWcorwin]
Dereck Offline
Prolific

Registered: 10/04/04
Posts: 10413
Loc: Great White North
That is how I understood it Corwin.
_________________________
"IF I COME ... I'M BRINGING THE PAIN WITH ME"

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#358344 - 08/27/07 08:02 PM Re: Uniforms & Consequences [Re: Dereck]
Bushi_no_ki Offline
Veteran

Registered: 05/03/05
Posts: 1667
Loc: POM, Monterey CA
I wear a uniform for my job. And the appearance of that uniform is of paramount importance. I am an expert and a professional, I will always maintain my arms, my equipment, and myself. Now, off duty, I do tend to slum it a little, usually wearing just a T-shirt and jeans, and the jeans might have a couple of holes or ripped knees. However, when I'm going out, or in certain other situations, not just sitting in the barracks, I will wear better looking jeans, and an actual T-shirt, not one of my tan undershirts.

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