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Should Dressing Up For Dinner Make A Comeback?

A dress code for the chicken nuggets, please.

Now that dinner with friends/dates/family is back on the table post-lockdown, we’re all seeing each other a lot more. But has lockdown destroyed the notion that we ought to be ‘presentable’ when we’re out at dinner?

An opinion piece in today’s Sydney Morning Herald, written by Fisk co-writer Penny Flanagan, says sartorially we’re just not cutting the mustard.

And look out Sydney, this might be one thing Melbourne has over you; “I’m talking specifically about Sydney because overdressing is a beloved pastime in Melbourne and the city’s restaurants look fabulous for it.”

Oooh. Shots fired!

It certainly got our office talking. There were several of us who do get more dressed up for dinner, but the male constituents seemed to feel more guilt around how dressed up there were, because as soon as they saw their dates/partners they realised they weren’t as dressed up and looked a tad ‘like a schmuck’ and ‘like I’m letting both her and myself down.’ Oof!

Something we also discussed was ‘How dressed up should you get for The Batman at Gold Class Cinemas?’ because one fellow employee saw their partner and thought ‘Maybe shorts and Birkenstocks weren’t enough.’ But then again, you’re off to see The Batman. Is there a dress code for The Batman just because it’s at a Gold Class Cinema? And then we got lost on how much ‘The Batman’ sounds like how your mum would refer to it, in the same way she still pronounces sushi ‘sooosh-ie’.

We landed on the thinking of, that if it could be perceived as a date, even if you’ve been living with the person for years and you feel very comfortable around them, putting some effort in is good. But it’s trickier said than done because you don’t want to feel too over-dressed, and being under-dressed is just as bad.

Frankly I think we’re all going to need another year to remember what the agreed peer-group-pressure thing is, and roll with that.