Why Do You Wear Pajamas in Public?

In the USA, I’ve seen people wear sweatpants in public, and hospital scrubs worn as street clothes have been de rigueur for a decade now, but I don’t understand the continued rise of wearing pajamas — and slippers! — in public as your actual clothing.

This “Pajamas as Fashion” trend threatens to bring the People of Wal-Mart straight into the mainstream streets — and we just can’t have that sort of tasteless folly passing for acceptable leisure wear.

Shanghai has the right idea:

Shanghai wants to look its best when it hosts the 2010 World Expo in a few months, so it’s spreading the word to residents: Pajamas are for inside the house. Concerned about the popular habit of wearing boldly colored PJs on city streets, officials have launched a public campaign to discourage the practice.

The fashion statement began “as a matter of practicality because people lived in cramped conditions with no clear line between public space and private place,” a Chinese sociologist tells the South China Morning Post.

Why, for some people, is there a fuzzy line between the bedroom and the public square?

On last Sunday’s Amazing Race aired on CBS television, team Zev and Justin raced in China and India with Zev Glassenberg wearing silk pajamas.  It was ridiculous, disrespectful and plainly dumb — and we can’t blame Zev’s bad clothing taste on his Asperger’s syndrome or on CBS.  The fashion faux pas belongs squarely on Glassenberg’s grimy shoulders.

Cultures begin to diminish when the tenets of self-respect and community values begin to get disintegrate with aesthetic carelessness and selfish intentions.  Sure, it’s more comfortable to wear pajamas in public instead of proper attire — but that doesn’t make it right.  If you don’t respect yourself, at least respect the rest of us who know better and how to properly dress.  We don’t want to see your bad taste in nightwear roaming around the streets, and slippers are meant to be left at home.  Wearing slippers in public is almost as bad as wearing flip-flops in the White House.

What’s next?  Vomit Pants as the new couture?

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