You may be looking askance at the graphic accompanying this post. Believe me that by time that I am finished you will understand why it is so important for me to tell this story. When I started teaching in the early 90s, it was still expected that if the women teachers wore skirts or dresses, they wore pantyhose. This may seem outdated not but at they time it was standard operating procedure. I do recall a couple of times when the principal or assistant principal spoke to teachers about not wearing some. Since I was the only man in the primary wing, I didn’t have an issue but one of my favorite stories revolves around pantyhose.
We were in our grade level meetings and we had congregated in Suzanne’s room. Jana rushes in from her room a little disheveled. She was struggling with a kid and she said that her pantyhose had been torn and she was hoping the administrators would not come down to our wing. Suzanne asked what color was wearing that day. Jana was not the type to coordinate her outfits to the point of worrying about her pantyhose color. She said that the typical beige sheer style. Many of the teachers hated this policy but still had a spare pair in their closet. Not to be outdone, Suzanne walked over to her desk and opened the file drawer. Most of us had student files or other instructional tools in the drawer. But when Suzanne opened that drawer I knew I was in the presence of someone who was at the top of her game. Instead of having files, she had pantyhose. She had every imaginary color. She had summer ones and winter ones. They were color coded, lined up, and 2 pairs each. Please do not inquire how I know that there are summer and winter styles but it involves playing football in a cold climate before the time of this ultra-thin winter wear that we have now. I learned many things from my colleagues those first few years but I learned that you can never be too prepared for life.