My lola was always a stickler for proper manners. And she was particularly strict about how people behaved in public. As with any normal apo growing up, I never paid attention until some time later.
She always pointed out common eyesores that I’ve come to realize were indeed annoying (been there. Done that. Guilty.), and for the sake of helping the unaware, particularly those in the corporate workforce, I’m sharing these lessons:
1.) NEVER COME TO WORK WITH WET HAIR
There simply is no class in that.
Going out in public with hair fresh from the bathroom shows that one has poor grooming skills and is willing to face the public “unfinished”.
Wet hair is associated with the privacy of the bath and the bedroom. Facing your workmates, your boss, or clients with wet hair is tantamount to standing in front of them wearing house clothes.
2.) NEVER COMB YOUR HAIR IN PUBLIC
Fine people of yesteryears will simply look at this act as “bastos.” I know my lola will simply exclaim “Yiiii! Hindi naturuan!”
Grooming one’s self in public is just like inviting everyone into one’s private tokador. It just feels funny.
Dozens of times I’ve sat beside people who combed their hair in jeepneys and buses. It always makes me realize their arms and elbows take up too much space.
Same principle goes for putting make-up on in full view of workmates and strangers.
(One time, aboard the MRT, a fellow passenger sprayed on perfume. I immediately remembered famous words from a very dear friend, Gil: “Bambini… amoy Aurora Boulevard.” Hahaha!)
3.) NEVER WEAR SLIPPERS WHEN IN UNIFORM (or other forms of work clothes. My old job had us in casual wear.)
Regardless of brand, slippers are still slippers. They’re not proper in the workplace and they just strip you off of any professionalism that’s left in the eyes of people.
My lola never approved of wearing slippers when going out beyond the bounds of the neighborhood. She’d always stick to the principle that “pag naka-tsinelas ka, mukha kang kawawa.” “Ang tsinelas ay para sa bahay lamang.”
Another thing about slippers is that they drag and flap annoyingly as you walk – – parang naglakad ka lang sa sala. People won’t mind the “tok, toks” of highheels, but will surely have a sore spot for that “plak, plak.”
It is completely understandable that high heels and leather shoes are gifts from hell when it comes to the topic of comfort, and that some will have to bring a pair of comfy flip-flops to work. But please, try not to wear them when leaving your workzone or let other people see them. One word: BADUY.
I know of someone who always loves wearing Havaianas everywhere – the car, the office, everywhere! The thing is, her feet weren’t pretty. In fact, they looked like a man’s feet. Imagine her showing those little piggies to her clients.
4.) NEVER WEAR TORN CLOTHES…
…or stained clothes
…or clothes with missing buttons
…or visible safety pins
…or…whatever any decent mom would not approve of!
A badly groomed professional is not a professional at all A VERY LOUSY PROFESSIONAL. [Thanks for the point-out, Jasper!]
These are some lessons I’ve learned the hard way. If you think it makes sense, feel free to share it just as I did. J
This entry is dedicated to Lola Paz Rivera. I miss you.