Wednesday, 8 August 2012

I (Don't) Love A Man Me In Uniform

 Just two more shifts in the den of hell to go before I start my gainful new employment. So far I have been stunned by the bizarre reactions from my superiors (one started quoting Paul Simon lyrics at me, the other refuses to believe I am leaving and keeps texting me trying to get me to cover my own shifts after my leaving date). I've also already been reduced to tears by comments from the gym members, who seem genuinely really upset that I'm leaving and are all telling me how I've helped them and how much they'll miss me. I had no idea, I am floored and a bit humbled.

I tell you what though, I can't wait to not wear their horrible uniform. looked at my manky pink fleece on Monday and thought "I could stop wearing you now if I wanted. I could go naked! I could sit on this leg press machine with my sweaty naked bottom! What are they going to do, fire me?" and it was probably the most liberating bit of all. I have a whole wardrobe full of logo tops and ill-fitting vests, and they're all going back. Every last one.

What is it about low-wage employment that they feel the need to dress you like a complete chump? I genuinely think it's deliberately designed to take your self esteem down a peg so you don't fight back when they trim your wages and guilt you into doing overtime. I've "lost" every name tag they've ever given me because I'm convinced other people knowing your name when you don't know theirs means they own your soul.

To be fair, the only really intolerable bit about the gym uniform is the frumpy fleece. It's not a patch on when I used to work at Asda in the uni holidays. Not only did they make us wear a fleece so green it looked positively radioactive, they also had these awful nylon trousers that pinched in at the waist, ballooned out over the hips and stopped an inch short of your ankle. I often wondered who had designed such hideous trews, imagining myself busting into the Asda uniform design HQ to find an army of tiny fashion designers, each with a sixteen inch waist and a disproportionately massive bottom.

Anyway, although everyone keeps saying "oh you've never had to dress before a corporate office before! It'll take some getting used to!" I'm pretty sure I'll still manage to swing a bit of personality in there. No more fleeces for me until I'm at least 52.

Go on then, I bet you've got some corkers -what's been your most hideous work uniform?


  1. I never worked there, but the old Disney shop uniforms that they had in Meadowhall were fucking horrifying to me even as a 10 year old. Google image search is not coming up with anything, but I have vague, Vietnam flashback-style recollections of grinning employees in turquoise cardigans. The horror!

    1. I remember those! Weirdly, the Disney Store was somewhere I actually wanted to work as a teen, but I wasn't clean cut enough, they wouldnt have had me I'm sure. Reading horror stories about Disney employees since has made me glad I never tried....


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  2. I used to work in Newlook, which wasn't entirely terrible.... (understatement!) but we did have to wear whatever new 'fashionable' collection was in at that time, which changed about every month! So a tonne of wages would go on horrible ill fitting jeans, flowery fruffy tops and crap with dimantes stuck on it..... so so so depressing for a grungy teenage girl!

    love the blog! H x

    1. Thanks H! I can't believe they made you buy clothes, even with staff discount that is seriously depressing...


  3. That's so lovely about your gym clients, must be great to hear how much you've helped them :)

    On the uniform front I think when I was young I always strayed towards jobs on the basis of the uniform, or lack thereof. So Virgin Megastore was great - anything you like with a red t-shirt (and there wasn't even a logo on the t-shirts at the Nottingham store, because they never seemed to get a delivery of them the whole time I worked there).

    I worked at Oggy Oggy pasty company which I'm sure must have had an horrific uniform but I hated the job so much - walking out after a couple of weeks mid-shift - that I appear to have blocked out the memory of the outfit.

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