I’m calling it Dana Giacchetto-hausen’s syndrome by proxy: It’s a new disease that causes media glitterati to hire a financial adviser based on that person’s perceived level of grooviness, i.e., how much Helmut Lang is hanging in his closet and how many celebrities he knows. Symptoms vary: Sufferers frequently hallucinate, imbuing patently flaky blond guys in designer clothing with qualities like honesty and integrity.
What possessed so many smart people to give Dana Giacchetto their “hard” earned dosh? Maybe the new Wall Street casual dress code is to blame. Forced to choose between the earnest dweeb in his moderate sportswear and the hiply attired Dana, they chose the latter.
Life was much easier when accountants looked like accountants and colorists looked like colorists–but don’t fret, the casual pendulum will soon swing back toward conservative business attire. My reasoning?
1. Casual business attire has been offered as a perk for which employees are temporarily grateful. This poignant serf-like gratitude cannot last. How long will it be before blokes realize that being allowed to wear a Cliff Huxtable Coogi sweater on a Friday is not a perk?
2. Everyone loves a uniform–I know I do. It allows one to be an individual.
3. Charles Darwin. Only the lawyers and money managers who wear business attire will survive, because they will always be more effective–a good suit will do that for you.
Tip: If your bloke has been forced into casual business attire, for God’s sake get him a good sports coat–three-button, side-vented. Spend a fortune on it at Barneys New York, Bergdorf Goodman or Paul Stuart. Have him wear it a lot; when the elbows get threadbare cover them with leather elbow patches.
April 26 is Secretary’s Day, which also happens to be Rattlesnake Day in Magnum, Oklahoma. If I were a secretary, I would rather find a rattlesnake in my purse than any of the truly frightening pre-packaged Secretary’s Day gifts that are available on the Web. These unglamorous, cellophane-wrapped atrocities are filled with enough caffeine and sugar to blow the gaskets off any secretary, e.g., Mochas Gracias, $32 worth of speed offered by akagourmet.com.
The lack of nutritional value in these heinous gifts may be advantageous to some employers. Got a secretary who isn’t performing so well anymore? Force her into an early retirement by silting up her arteries with slabs of jack cheese, white cheddar popcorn and cheesecake cookies.
The most pathos-drenched secretary gift must surely be the $45 Anti-Stress gift package from incelebration.com, which contains “a 3-inch diameter white chocolate aspirin and a humorous complaint form.” Mind if I kill myself?
If I were a secretary I would like to receive something prissy and yet slightly slutty: an extra-long pearl chain necklace for my glasses, available at Lenscrafters for $15 and up. Encourage me to get in touch with my inner Miss Moneypenny. Give me a subscription to Hello! magazine (a year for $173.62; call 011441 858 438817) and a gift certificate to the Avon Centre Spa and Salon at the Trump Tower (manicure $26, pedicure $50). How about an extra-long emery board–$27.50 for a pack of 50 from image-supply.com–to drag languidly across my French manicure while I tuck into Hello! and reluctantly answer your phone?
P.S. If you are a secretary and you receive an e-mailed electronic gift card (these can be e-mailed at no cost to the sender)–you have my permission to start putting white-out in your boss’s coffee.
Run to Balducci’s and shove your face into a box of figs and then tell me it’s not the most heavenly smell on Earth.
For fig fetishists everywhere, L’Artisan Parfumeur has created Premier Figuier, Eau de Toilette, 100 ml., $89, and an Interieur Figuier scented candle, $70, available at Barneys New York, Bendel’s, Jeffrey and a fab little shop on Christopher street called Aedes De Venustas.
Clogged? Syrup of figs is a magnificent laxative and a natural source of seratonin that will stimulate your pineal gland– wherever the hell that is. Bar Products sells an 8-ounce bottle for $5.95. Call 800-269-2502.
Grow your own figs. English gardening expert John-Paul Philippe advocates the ancient custom of burying a dead dog under your fig tree; abundant, succulent figs will result, and the fecund tree will become a lovely memorial to your deceased pet.
Fishnets are back–but only for entertaining chez vous. Wear dark brown fishnets with an oversized off-white Aran sweater and nothing else.
Wolford sells classic fishnets for $40–sans control top–in black, brown, ivory and tan. They also sell vertically patterned fishnets–they don’t catch any fewer fish but, they are $5 cheaper. To sustain the fishnet trend through the summer, Wolford is, rashly, offering them in pink, lilac and red–I’m sure Jackie Stallone will partake.
A word of caution: Do not wear fishnets unless your legs are really fat or really thin. Ordinary legs look dreadful in them.
For more information call 800-WOLFORD, or, in the unlikely event that you have nothing better to do, you can visit its Web site at http://www.wolford.com.