Denim jackets, Flannel Shirts, and Cowboy boots

Published 9:00 am Thursday, August 27, 2020

Getting your Trinity Audio player ready...

This is written with no one, in particular, in mind, but I’m seeing a lot of political commercials. It makes me think that the appropriate wearing apparel these days is denim jackets, flannel shirts, and cowboy boots.

Around this time every few years, we meet via political ads people we hardly recognize. It’s as if the man who wears suits and ties all the time wakes up one morning and asks his wife.

“Dear,” he asks, “have you seen my denim jacket and cowboy boots? I’m supposed to make a political ad today and want to wear them.”

Email newsletter signup

His wife replies, “Oh, I sent your denim jacket to the cleaners last year and I’m not sure I ever went back to pick it up. As for your cowboy boots, I had them polished and shined and put them back in the shoebox so they would not pick up so much dust.”

“What!!” the senator screams. “That jacket needs to be wrinkled as if I’ve been wearing it around for weeks. Also, the last thing I want is for my cowboy boots to look spit-shined! Why don’t you get them out of the box and scuff them up a little. Put some dirt on them. And, I need your help in getting a serious look on my face. People like to vote for a serious looking person.”

It is the silly season of politicking, isn’t it? How many of you have gotten a telephone call or a letter from someone asking for your vote? Why, President Trump even called the other day.

Actually I like this silly season, sort of. It’s enlightening to know that my senator, congressman, president, dogcatcher, whoever holds any sort of office, works so hard! That sort of evidence is unimaginable except for the season where people run for office. I’m surprised at how much they have helped me.

It’s also hard to imagine how far our politicians have come in their lives. I mean, most of the ads show them having begun their lives in very humble circumstances. It’s like that old saying. The one asking for my vote had to “walk a mile in the snow, uphill, to school every day.” Even in the south and both ways!

I also didn’t know that so many politicians had pick-em-up trucks and old tractors. Livestock makes for a good picture. Here is Senator Foghorn Leghorn, remember him, standing in the barnyard with those cowboy boots on, looking at his cows. That proves he’s honest and is working hard.

When I lived in Tennessee many decades ago, Lamar Alexander ran for governor. He walked all around the state in a flannel shirt and blue jeans. It worked and he won. Then, he pulled that same flannel shirt and pair of jeans back out of the closet when he ran for senator. Worked then, too.

I would say that as little wear and tear as that flannel shirt and those blue jeans got, they would last a lifetime. It’s easy to think that his flannel shirt was worth much more than the Hart-Schaffner-Marx suits he wears every day in the Senate.

For the next few months we’ll all be seeing plenty of politicking and that’s okay by me. It’s important that we are engaged by the people who want to “run” our country. We need to pay attention to what they say and promise. Just don’t forget what they actually do!

I know that I wouldn’t want to run for office. No telling what people would say about me and some of it would be true. The bottom line is this, though. I don’t have a denim jacket, a flannel shirt, or a pair of cowboy boots. I wouldn’t stand a chance!