Field Report no 2: The (Menswear) Game is Real

"There’s only one real game and that game is menswear."

Who said that?

When I rolled out of my bed nine in the morning I already knew that I’d be late from the morning meeting. I had to chug six cups of coffee to get myself running.

It was the first day on the job as a menswear reporter. How did I ever get into this? I heard that menswear was the realm of people with very limited knowledge about clothing acting on the internet style forums like they knew everything.

I finished my sixth cup, slipped into my ranger mocs and breezed out of the door. 

Metro ride to work. I thought about the game - and all its fairs and events that were currently postponed or cancelled due to this crazy pandemic. The metro was almost empty, no connoisseurs spotted, not one that followed the menswear hashtag on instagram on sight. You had to travel to the internets to find these people.

Boop! Metro doors slammed open. University stop - get out. It was dead quiet. I kept rolling up the streets. Crossing a desolated shopping street with no one to be seen. Finally after passing a park with only virus-ignorant little birds making noise I finally ended up in Ullanlinna district in South Helsinki. The place smelled like old money.

And there it was - Caine Clothiers. Nice brick & mortar front. Tons of expensive shoes, bags and other stuff that people called essentials. A quite nice collection actually. I bounced in fifteen minutes late and faced a yelling circus, it was the morning palaver (an old English nautical slang for unnecessary talk). My presence was noted and the yelling stopped.

It was time for me to face the music for being late. Sorry, sorry, my deepest apologies, blah blah blah. The punishment was fifteen pushups, each pushup for each minute of being late. “Now sink down and give me fifteen”, the boss said.

“What”, I replied as I sank into a chair.

A quote was read to me about a guy who bragged to be on point with his pencil and never to be late. Who said that? I turned out it was me, in my own job application. 

After I got issued a laptop the boss came to me and told me to create a bunch of articles that would inspire the good people to buy and create revenue for the shop.

He pulled me off the chair and grabbed my arms with an iron grip and with a lunatic grin he started hissing and told me to  “Remember that you…..Hhhssss…. Are… hhhssshhhh my number one…. Hhhhss guy hhsss..!” Yes sir! A slap on the back and off to work you go!
Into the real world to create quality content - something truly inspiring what the journalist armies of big colossal e-commerce enterprises couldn’t achieve or what the small businesses wouldn’t bother going for. 

Except that the real world would have to wait, because it was time to get acquainted with my workspace. Well that didn’t sound too bad, this neighborhood seemed nice enough.

My office was in the basement next to the boiler room. A dreary place where even the rats wouldn’t bother to go. Floor was covered with stained layers of splashed paint, like a Pollock piece.

A small table and a desk light. Time to create stories. Even in fashion they knew how good stories worked. I unloaded the contents of my duffle bag on the desk which included a huge stack of old Gentry magazines and a bottle of whiskey.

"And remember, no drinking on the job."

I wonder who said that. And who cares anyway, it's May Day today.