“Well, what is it?” I asked. “Is it the water here or something in the office air? Is this some Erin Brockovich shit or something?”
Dr. Susnow explained that he was able to rule out the water and air because two of the six employees who suffered from the same symptoms worked in two different satellite offices.
“I have a theory,” he said, “but it’s only a theory.” He stopped.
“Well, what is it?” I demanded, growing impatient.
“Hmm, I don’t know if I should tell you because, like I said, it’s only a theory and, really, I need more time to think about it. Telling you now would be premature.”
“You gotta tell me. I’m dying here. I can barely get out of bed in the morning. I can’t go on like this. I just can’t.”
“O.K., O.K. I’ll tell you but this doesn’t go beyond this room. You must promise met that. If this theory is true, which I hope it’s not, it will disrupt the entire order of things as they now are. Do you understand me?”
Many people believe that the issue of biz caz is simply too general to be the subject of one Web site. Writing about wearing biz caz is like writing about breathing. Everyone does it.
Believe it or not, not everyone wears biz caz. This may be hard for many to accept. It certainly was for us for a long time. Everywhere we went the only people we saw were dressed in biz caz. All of our coworkers and all the other professionals near our downtown offices were in biz caz. Same with all the other drinkers we saw at happy hours at our favorite after-work bars like Houlihans, Slappy O’Leary’s and the Bull and Bear. Even the employees of restaurants and retail stores like Starbucks and Best Buy were biz caz clad.
It’s easy for people to grow up believing that everyone wears biz caz. Well, not everyone does. We hate to be the ones to break it to you but that’s what we do, we speak the hard truth about biz caz.
Therefore, we are going to begin profiling people who do not wear biz caz as a way of expanding our readers’ horizons.
First up, Rick Rubin.
Rick Rubin, an influential music producer who cofounded Def Jam Records, does not wear biz caz.
However, his friend Jay-Z does wear biz caz. Intersestingly, when Jay-Z wears biz caz no one calls it biz caz. This is due to the fact that instead of looking like Sean Carter, a mid manager for the past 10 years at Inintech, he is still that Jay-Hova while wearing khaki pants and a striped shirt. How many of your cubicle-mates can you say that about?
The day of my diagnosis I wore a wrinkle resistant Club Room dress shirt that was pale blue with white checks. The horizontal white lines were slightly bolder than their vertical brethren. I thought it was an illusion at first but it’s not.
My pants were black with white pin stripes that were so faint they were barely noticeable. I was violating a cardinal Biz Caz rule by wearing checks with stripes. However, I hoped the stripes in my pants were so faint that I could get through the day undetected. I hadn’t even noticed them until I put them on in my office.
I had bought the pants at a Banana Republic one weekday morning after I was caught in a torrential rainstorm that drenched my Banana Republic chinos. Not wanting to spend the day in wet clothes I made the trip to the Banana Republic that is conveniently and appropriately located at the center of all the downtown office buildings. The store was crowded for 10:15 a.m. It was filled with other water-logged office workers.
Happy Jeans Friday from all of us at the Biz Caz Blues. Jeans Friday, of course, is a big day around here. It really is an amazing concept because you still go to work but it doesn’t feel like work at all because you’re wearing denim pants! It’s like magic. Have a wonderful day at work, still working, but not feeling like you’re working.
We here at The Biz Caz Blues have been inundated with emails from confused and sometimes angry readers who visited our site thinking it is a site about music. These readers assumed that Biz Caz Blues is a musical genre like the “Mississippi Blues.”
We’d like to take this moment to clarify that this site is not about music. It is devoted to studying and, hopefully, remedying the epidemic of depression that comes from wearing business casual that is sweeping the country and moving into other parts of the world. We apologize for any confusion.
However, these emails did make us think that Biz Caz Blues could also be a musical genre. We beleive that music may possibly be a powerful and effective method of spreading our important message.
This got us thinking about what the Biz Caz Blues, the music, would sound like. After extensive research, we unanimously selected John Mayer as the official sound of the Biz Caz Blues. This video of his song, “Your Body is a Wonderland,” captures perfectly the essence of Biz Caz Blues, the affliction.
Though it is about a woman’s sexy body and Mr. Mayer’s attraction to said body, the song makes us tired, fatigued, sexless and generally not very excited about life. These are all symptoms of the Biz Caz Blues. The vast majority of male Biz Caz office workers can relate to this song. They frequently find themselves spotting a beautiful woman on the street while on their way to pick up lunch from Subway and instead of feeling attraction and excitement from the sight of such a beautiful woman, they feel nostalgia for the time when they would have felt such attraction and excitement (circa, right before they began wearing biz caz). We believe that it is this feeling that Mr. Mayer is trying to convey.
Mr. Mayer is also an obvious choice as the official sound of Biz Caz Blues because of his current relationship with Jennifer Aniston. Ms. Aniston, of course, starred in Friends, the first-ever television series produced by the Smart and Casual Officewear Federation (SACOF). SACOF created Friends as a way to promote its agenda of having a biz caz dress code in every office in every country. Friends was just one piece of SACOF’s sophisticated propaganda machine
So, Mr. Mayer, sing the blues. Sing the Biz Caz Blues.
While there are certainly a host of ills associated with biz caz, the relaxed dress code does have some redeeming features. For example, study after study has demonstrated that workplaces that have implemented a biz caz policy have an exceedingly smaller number of violent incidents than those that have not implemented such a policy.
The biz caz trade association, the Smart and Casual Officewear Federation (SACOF), uses these studies as a way to promote its agenda of having a biz caz dress code in every office in every country. Although the biz caz movement clearly emerged victorious from the bloody officewear wars of the 1980s and 90s, SACOF is not a group to rest on its laurels. It knows that part of what won the war–in addition to biz caz muscle–was propaganda. And propaganda is what will keep biz caz in power.
An example of such propaganda is SACOF’s recently released commercial showing the violence that is all too common in a non-biz caz office. The commercial is titled, “Office Worker Goes Absolutely Insane.” The commercial is hard hitting and its message is clear: If this man had been allowed to wear Dockers instead of a suit, his coworkers would be in a lot less pain now, especially the lady who caught a computer monitor with her face.
I fell into a funk around the time I graduated from college and started my office job. The symptoms weren’t severe at first. I didn’t feel depressed. It was more of a lack of energy than sadness. All the enthusiasm and spirit of my college years were gone. My senses were muted.
I figured my body was adjusting to waking up to a screeching alarm at 7 a.m. after years of rising naturally at 10 or 11 a.m. After several months passed and my symptoms hadn’t improved, I started to feel depressed. I hadn’t felt so drained since I had mono my junior year in high school or after I got that three foot bong for my 20th birthday.
I started to get desparate. Early one morning, before my coworkers arrived and I was all alone in the maze of cubicles, I put my phone’s head set on and dialed the four-digit extension of the office’s staff psychiatrist. (Apparently, enough of my colleagues felt the way I did for the office to have a full-time shrink.) Three rings and no answer. This is silly, I thought to myself. Just as I extended my index finger to the “end call” button on my Cisco phone, there was an answer. “This is Dr. Susnow,” the voice on the other end said.
I wanted to hang up but I knew that his caller ID exposed my identity.
“Um, uh,” I stuttered. “I’m sorry, I shouldn’t have called.”
“No,” he said forcefully. “You called for a reason. Come to my office at noon. We’ll talk then.”
The next thing I heard was a dial tone. I exhaled as I placed the head set on my desk. Sean from three cubes away shouted, “Sup,” and smacked me on the back of my head as he walked by, causing me to jump out of my chair. I stood and surveyed the grey and beige room to make sure no one had overheard my conversation. Luckily, it was just Sean and me.