The week before I retired, I attended a modern art exhibit. I found myself in front of an installation that displayed hundreds of ties of various types, as well as tie clips, tacks, and pins. It brought home that I was indeed retiring. After 40-plus years of working in an office – where a tie was de rigueur for many of those years – the jumble of repurposed ties instilled in me a sense of relief: I no longer needed to endure the literal and figurative constraints of a necktie. And it inspired me to contemplate the freedom that was about to be mine.
A lifetime collection of ties that bind
are loosened and released
on their own recognizance.
TImE to reTIrE.
Can you spell retirement without t-i-e?
I will, and can, gla-ad-ly!
Re r ment. Re r ment.
for whatever’s next.
I don’t know,
I’m tie-erd of ties.
One part decoration,
two parts indoctrination,
a screen to hide behind.
Good riddance to the daily grind.
It’s time to lose the noose.
And retire those stifling ties.
Solids, stripes, and paisleys
that hide stains and spots.
Tartan, checked, plaid,
floral prints and polka dots.
Geometric patterns — a trip without LSD.
A Bugs Bunny, a nebula born, and other novelties.
Too many to count. Goodbye, please.
No more futzing and fumbling
with the four-in-hand or
dare I try it Windsor
neither half knot nor
A Full Windsor is bulky enough to fill out a collar, producing a huge triangular knot that’s proportionate. It will look good if you have a large neck. A Full Windsor is great for shirts with widespread collars. Just make sure you have an extra-long tie that can accommodate all the wrapping around and looping. And hope that the narrow end called the “tail” doesn’t come out longer than the main lower section called the “blade.”
(sigh) Or you’ll have to wrap and lift and loop the loops – oops! – all over again!
A knotty problem.
But knots are not the problem.
Not for knot-free me.
No t-i-e in
re r ment.
So long, silks. Soft and supple to the touch
with high tensile strength and stretchability.
Durable, stylish and a welcome addition
to any gentleman’s haberdashery.
But who wants to be a gentleman?
Adios, cottons and linens for summer wear.
Take a hike, knitted ties for casual affairs.
Farewell, wool, best in the cold winter air.
Polyesters and blends: take it slow and take care!
I’m glad to be done with all of you.
The bowties, bolos, and clip-ons, too.
And what’s more:
Rubber band the tie clips, the tie bars, the tie pins, and tie tacks
that hold the ties down,
trapped in place
no room to move
to go their own way
into a pack.
Make a space in the back
of the sock drawer.
Next to the cufflinks.
Of no use anymore.
A pity to waste
all those birthday-Xmas-Valentine’s gifts?
No, creativity isn’t what you lack! It’s not that.
Not when you can put on your “Hey, I don’t have to go to work today” hat.
Mount those clips, bars, pins, and tacks on a rough-hewn board
and call it
“hung up on conformity.”
TImE to reTIrE.
Follow your convictions!
Open the collar.
Imagine the possibilities.
Cravats … kerchiefs … ascots … scarves!
What might they say about you?
Maybe even turtlenecks.
But dickies. Never. Ew!
Hang it up, ties.
Your work is done
Don’t get choked up.
(There’s a pun or allegory there, somewhere.)
I’m moving on.
No longer tied down.
By you or anyone.
But first, I’ll take you off
then take off
to my put-off
for too long, long-deserved retirement party.
Time to tie one on.