A pleasing, albeit dated, illustration of male professionals the way they looked once upon a time (not all that long ago) before egalitarian sloppiness took over in the name of perceived comfort, 'Relatability,' and a standard to which all could more readily aspire.
About three weeks ago, a male student asked to talk to me following my class on Contemporary Global Cinema. Mr. D. is a pretty good student who views most of the films, does most of the related reading, and contributes to class discussions as well as his student learning team projects. A Michigan rocker judging by hair length and attire.
Anyway, once the room was empty, he asked how he might increase his vocabulary and spruce up his appearance. I suggested a few book titles via Amazon and told him to pick up a few if he could and read a little everyday. A week later, he proudly stopped by after class to show me the three he had ordered and was working through. We chatted for a few more minutes, and I asked him to stop again if he had any further questions or related ideas.
For all of its frustrations, teaching undergraduates does occasionally have its more rewarding moments. The all too rare instances like the one I describe remind me why I continue to do this despite the inane meetings, awkward colleagues, and it sometimes seeming like everything we do only exacerbates the 'snowflake' phenomenon instead of encouraging young people to grow up and stand on their own two feet.
It is gratifying to learn that there are some young guys out there who not only have their eyes and ears open, but who are taking the necessary steps to improve themselves in at least a couple of ways beyond their actual studies.