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Editor’s NotebookEditor’s Notebook: Ms. Crawford knew how to dress nice, why can't they?

Editor’s Notebook: Ms. Crawford knew how to dress nice, why can’t they?

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“Don’t [bleeeeeeeeeeep] with me, fellas, this ain’t my first time at the rodeo” from “Mommie Dearest” has to be one of the half-dozen or so greatest lines to have come out of Hollywood over the past century.

I was reminded of that phrase because, to outward appearances, it seems that the two fellers on the Arlington School Board not only are not following the Sun Gazette’s recent editorial-page admonition to dress better, but seem to be going in the opposite direction, likely intentionally.

Based on the April 7 meeting, both David Priddy and Reid Goldstein looked even less sartorially splendiferous than they have in earlier meetings this year. No jackets, no ties.


Boys, boys, boys: Would it kill ya to slap on jacket and at least feign having some respect for the positions you hold? Or at least consider how embarrassing this must be for your three female colleagues, who keep up appearances by dressing appropriately for the dais, only to find the professionalism of the entire body undermined by your sloppy choices?

My guess is Goldstein and Priddy decided that, because the Sun Gazette publicly pointed out their shortcomings (attire-wise), they can’t actually follow our advice and dress more correctly, or we’d gloat about having forced a change in behavior.

Gloating when people follow our advice is not the Sun Gazette’s style; heaping increasing levels of abuse on those who don’t is more to our liking. It’s one of the few things that keeps us coming into the office with smiles on our faces during these troubled times.

I think I’m on my sixth Arlington superintendent of schools in this job, and the number of School Board members who have come and gone is significantly higher. And this current fashion contretemps is not, in the immortal words of Miss Faye Dunaway channeling her inner Joan Crawford, my first time at this particular rodeo of taking on elected officials who decline to dress appropriately.

And as the old saying goes, it never pays to pick fights with those who buy ink by the barrel. Even if it’s more metaphorically true than literally so these days.

THE RESPONSE FROM THE PUBLIC? ‘WHATEVER’: Here’s one from the April 14, 1969, edition of the Northern Virginia Sun.

The paper reported that a consultant hired by the Fairfax County government came away appalled at the apathy of county residents.

Betcha there were no letters to the editor in response. Ah-hahahahahahaha!

– Scott McCaffrey

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