What Fresh Hell Is This?

Fionnuala and the kids bought me some new work shirts as part of my birthday present yesterday. Designer shirts no less. I was delighted until I discovered they had no buttons at the wrists. These shirts were no ordinary shirts, no sirreeeee. Instead, they required cuff links, another utterly alien concept to me on my journey through the adult world. What fresh hell was this?

Thankfully they had also included a pair of ‘fancy dan’ cuff links along with the shirts. I awoke this morning, filled with trepidation. I shaved, washed and then started to dress. The shirt was fresh and ironed within an inch of its life. I marvelled at how good it felt on my skin, before glancing dubiously at the accompanying cuff links which sat smirking at me on the bedside table. Taunting, gloating.

The process involves aligning four holes on each shirt cuff before sliding the link through each one. They can then been straightened and the cuff link secured. I had previously thought only Victorian gentlemen wore such instruments of torture. But, no, they are apparently ‘all the rage’ and a ‘must have’ for the man about town these days. What next I wondered. Monocles? Pocket watches? Commuting to work on a penny farthing?

After several failed attempts, and much griping, I managed to secure one of them, without impaling it upon my wrist and hitting a major artery. I twisted and turned every which way, impressing myself with my flexibility at such an early hour. Who needs yoga I thought. Just try and put on a pair of cuff links every morning. Harry Houdini eat your heart out. He had nothing on me. Bring on the chains and water chamber.

I wasn’t allowed to rest on my laurels as number two provided an even more Herculean challenge. It knocked the Gordian knot into a cocked hat as I was now forced to lead with my weaker left hand. Prayers were uttered and curses muttered until I eventually emerged triumphant from the bedroom. If this was a test of my manhood, I was utterly vindicated. I felt like Pinocchio. I’m a real boy. Er….man.

I swaggered downstairs to proudly show off my new found talent to Fionnuala. ‘Not bad for a 49 year old man,’ I boasted until she gently informed me that one of the cuff links was fastened the wrong way round. My testosterone bubble was instantaneously burst, and I meekly allowed her to fix it in a fraction of the time it had taken me to do first place. I felt like a little boy being dressed for school by his mother.

Lunchtime now looms on the horizon, where I was planning a much needed run. I may have to allow myself an extra hour to wrestle with my wrists. Or, alternatively, just throw in the towel and book the rest of the day off. I fear phoning Fionnuala asking for assistance might be frowned upon. No, I’m on my own with this one. Although I might have the emergency services on speed dial, just in case.

I knew this promotion would mean stepping out of my comfort zone, it’s the nature of the beast. Tomorrow I’ll be taking another step into the unknown but, this time, it doesn’t relate to sartorial matters. No, my new job necessitates longer hours so less opportunities for lunchtime running. So, tomorrow I’ll be indulging in the dreaded dawn run. Tune in for more of the same nonsense.

Published by Fractured Faith Blog

We are Stephen and Fionnuala and this is our story. We live in Northern Ireland, have been married for 15 years and have three kids - Adam, Hannah and Rebecca. We hope that our story will inspire and encourage others. We have walked a rocky road yet here we are today, together and stronger than ever. We are far from perfect and our faith has been battered and bruised. But an untested faith is a pointless faith. Just as a fractured faith is better than none at all. We hope you enjoy the blog.

54 thoughts on “What Fresh Hell Is This?

  1. What is the exact purpose of cufflinks besides being dapper? I feel little sympathy however because we women have lots of stupid purposeless nonsense we do as a daily ritual in the name of fashion. ๐Ÿคฃ

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  2. Due to an increase in neck size (how did that happen!?) I had to buy a new ‘posh’ shirt for my daughter’s wedding, which, of course, required cuff links. I thought I only had one pair (from my 2nd wedding a few years ago) but I had 2 (not sure how that happened either) but I also had a pair of my dad’s which I simply couldn’t throw away and that was the pair I decided to wear for the wedding. Not only that but I also wore a pocket watch which I bought when I was about 18 or 19 (1972/73). Remarkably it was/is Swiss made and has cows on the face. Spooky. But I looked very smart (apparently). I’m sure you do too. ๐Ÿ™‚

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  3. It is a manual dexterity test, that is what cufflinks are for. It might be I suspect, a remnant of the past, or a way to show how well off you are (like jewelry in my humble opinion)

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  4. Very dapper indeed! You could really rock a monocle, Mr. Black. I’m a bit surprised that you don’t already carry a pocket watch. I recall a time when a lunchtime swim or game of basketball was a regular occurrence. Now, I enjoy the sunrise as I run or ride my bike. Oh, the sacrifices that come with responsibility. Most days I wouldn’t want to trade places.

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