Thursday, July 25, 2013

Foreign Service Chic

I have rediscovered my love of grits. I know this may surprise some of you who are thinking who doesn't love grits? Well, I do, but I had forgotten. See, the problem with grits is the name, not the taste because grits and polenta are the same thing and when you fry them in butter--pure awesomeness. And when you put grilled shrimp and cheese sauce on them, to. die. for. Artemis and I went to a beachy place and that was one of the gluten-free items. I will definitely be back. It was so nice despite that the salad that came with the meal might have been the worst I ever tasted.

But tonight, I feel like ranting about fashion. Someone asked me today how I could stand working at "Main State" and I thought about it and I actually love it, except for the fact that there is very little good fashion to be seen. This week, I am in training so we have the whole "business casual" problem. So I have come up with a list of rules to help diplomats who can't figure out how to look professional and casual at the same time.

  1. If it is so short that you can't tell if it is a dress or a shirt, it is a shirt. Go home and put on some pants.
  2. Cuff-links and tie pins are OK for men. So are rings, but please, please leave the gold chains at home. Same with the shark-tooth or pukka shell necklace you go on your last R&R to somewhere tropical. 
  3. I don't even want to talk about friendship bracelets for men over 30. Unless it was given to you by a hill tribe member in North Vietnam, or a Masai warrior in Kenya, you can take it off.
  4. Nobody cares about which foreign Hard Rock restaurant you have been to. We are the foreign service and wearing one of those T-shirts only says you are stuck in the 90s.
  5. If you think flip-flops are only for the beach, you are wrong, because my pink suede ones with petals would be totally ruined by sand and water. Also, they are way too pretty not to be worn as often as possible.
  6. Taking off your tie does not make you business casual.
  7. No part of your underwear should ever touch the chair you are sitting in. That goes for men and women.
  8. For the love of all that is holy, please, please stop wearing those stupid flag pins with your newly assigned country on them. The only time those should be seen are at the 4th of July party at post.

Someone today suggested making a headband out of all the ones at your post. That might actually be OK.

I can't decide if this bouncy house hotel room is better than a brownie or not. On the one hand, it would so be a blast to sleep in a bouncy house. On the other hand, there are a lot of windows and it costs $50,000. 

I'm not too sure about that robot, either. So all in all, I'm thinking brownies are the better deal.


  1. Those rules should be mandatory for incoming officers in particular. I can't begin to describe the number of teeny tiny short skirts I counseled. Add an inch, for pete's sakes, and also, cut the little X on the back of the skirt vent.

  2. And *I'm* thinking that the solar load through the see-through panels is gonna make it HOT! And then your sweat will stick you to the surface. I think brownies are a better deal, too.


  3. But I LIKE my Hard Rock Sarajevo T-Shirt. I plan to wear it the next time we go out, when I'll be the one to have the grits.

    So there!