So I am probably not the only law student who feels like I’m playing dressing up whenever I wear a suit. I put on my pants, blazer, and heels, and look at myself in the mirror and think, ‘Who is that?’ As law school has progressed, the requirement to suit up has become more frequent; this semester I’m participating in the judicial externship program, which means wearing business attire on a daily basis.
To be fair, this is not the first time I’ve had to wear a suit for a job. When I worked at an art gallery in Whistler, my boss wanted us to “dress like we owned a law firm”. I wore a suit at work, but since I commuted by snowboard, that thing never saw the light of day. I would leave my suit at work and change there. I dreaded the strange looks I’d get cruising the streets of Whistler looking very overdressed for a mountain community.
Today I donned my suit and went downtown (like a real adult!). It’s funny how changing the way you look really does change the way the world looks at you. Despite still feeling like a fish out of water, I have found that there are certain advantages to looking professional. You know those canvassers who ask for money on street corners? If you wear a suit and stride past them, they don’t try to strike up a conversation with you.
It just seems like the world takes you a little more seriously when you dress a little more seriously. However, today, while waiting at a bus stop, someone threw an apricot at me. It was a good old fashioned drive-by fruiting. I don’t know why, but maybe it had something to do with the suit. Maybe the world isn’t taking me so seriously after all.
I don’t know that I’ll ever shake the feeling that a suit is a costume, but I am starting to feel a little more comfortable in my lawyer swag.