Federated C.E.O. Has Carefully Cultivated Image As...
July 25, 2006 05:40 PM
A talented businessman? A fashionista? A person who pays great attention to detail?
Or is he just an ass, because that's what he sounds like to us. Thank God The Post has reprinted this article, which first appeared last week in the Wall Street Journal. When we saw it then, we could not believe it--or that it profiles the C.E.O. of a company based in Cincinnati. It begins:
When Terry Lundgren planned his wedding last summer, he painstakingly deliberated the reception room's layout, chose the menu and handpicked the wine selection. Then he went a step further, designing the wedding gown for his fiancee, Tina Stephan.
"I wanted something very unique, that no one had done before," Lundgren explains....
Stephan saw her gown for the first time just before she walked down the aisle.
Okay. We don't care if you are the C.E.O. of a department store, anal-retentive, and a clothes horse. The groom does not get to pick what the bride gets to wear, and have it be a surprise. It just doesn't work that way. And what kind of self-respecting woman would farm out ALL of the wedding planning--even down to the design of the wedding dress--to her fiance? Can't she figure out how to dress herself?
The whole piece is lengthy, and the entire thing is worth reading. Throughout it, though, we are struck by one thought: He probably thinks this is really good PR! How could he have no idea how awful this makes him sound?
Lundgren grew up in a middle-class California home where fashion wasn't a priority, he says. His father assembled JBL speakers and later sold real estate. His mother was a homemaker who served the family dinner every night at 5:30. "If I wanted clothes, I was buying them," Lundgren says. Still, as a teenager, he became interested in fashion and honed his look: Sperry topsiders and Farah slacks.
"They were a tailored pant with a cuff - they were so different than just a jean," says Lundgren. "No one was wearing them at school. They were higher-end."
For Christmas, each Lundgren sibling was expected to get the others a $2 gift. "I told them, 'If you're going to get me something for $2, get me a pair of really nice socks,'" he says. "Through that process I got my first pair of cashmere socks - they were a little warm for Orange, Calif., but I thought they were great."
Terry, Terry, Terry. Class tells, and it doesn't sound like you have it. Even (actually especially) if they were trying to sell an upscale image for Macy's, wealthy people with class would not speak this way. Don't discuss the topsiders and Farah slacks that set you apart from the rest of your high school. Don't talk about the tailored pants and cuffs that nobody else had. And don't make fun of your family's $2 Christmas gifts. It sounds like you think you were too good for them. You do yourself no favors by revealing that to the public.