Men wore clothes that were as colorful as the ladies’ garb. One male fashion plate in New York ordered a suit of “superfine scarlet plush and a vest of light blue splash.”
What Life Was Like in 1776, Thomas Fleming
We were sitting in Independence Hall, waiting for the final version of the Declaration of Independence to come back from Congress. As you can imagine, it’d been a long wait. Talk about a horse designed by committee! Jefferson had dashed off a first draft in two shakes of a lamb’s tail, then had gone out to pick up his dry cleaning. He wanted to be wearin’ his superfine lime green MacDaddy Founding Fathers lounge suit when it came time to read his “We hold these truths to be self-evident” gag from the balcony, and who could blame him?
Now things were bogged down in minutiae. I can’t believe they wasted a half hour debating the “Oxford comma” in the clause “He has plundered our seas, ravaged our Coasts, burnt our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people.” Put it in, take it out–who cares? Nobody’s going to be reading the thing in 236 years anyway.
My only quarrel was with “Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.” Shouldn’t we say “and the pursuit of truly superfine, bad-ass clothes with honking big hats and walking sticks?” I mean, what’s the point of having a revolution if you can’t be a fashion revolutionary? All men may be created equal, but not all clothes–you dig what I’m sayin’?
Uh-oh–here comes John Adams, that disputatious little jerk from Massachusetts. What’s he wearing? Oh . . . my . . . freaking God. He looks like a John Daly wannabe heading to the 19th hole after a round of golf at the Presidents Course in Quincy, Mass. Talk about South Shore Tacky!
John Adams: First rule of business fashion: Never brown in town.
What’s he talkin’ about? We don’t need a Declaration of Independence because Parliament in the Prohibitory Act did bladda bladda whatta whatta? Why is he always so . . . angry, and uptight? If they hadn’t thrown all that tea in Boston Harbor they wouldn’t have the coffee jitters. Hey Adams–switch to decaf, would ya? Don’t be bringin’ that Hooters Tour shit in here–we’re trying to declare our independence from hidebound haberdashery conventions of the old world! Go burn a witch–you’ll feel better.
What a sorehead. Here comes Jefferson–now there’s a man with style. Good taste in wine and wenches. Let’s see who he’s wearing. Ab-so-lute-ly stunning! A fur collar–what a fashion breakthrough! I hold that stylin’ truth to be self-evident, that’s fo sho!
I can just imagine a future American President in the White House telling a gathering of award-winning designers that he’s present at probably the greatest concentration of fashion talent in this house except for perhaps those times when Thomas Jefferson ate alone.