DEAR MISS MANNERS: When my friend’s computer was broken, she asked if she could come to my house to attend an online meeting that I, too, was attending. I said yes, and jokingly said that I believed the rule is that if you leave the house to attend an online meeting, you must wear pants. She wrote back, “Under- or outer-?”
I was loath to commit to an answer. I know that there are instances when these categories blur.
Can you explain the manner of dressing that might be expected of a guest who has come over specifically to attend an online event where attendees will be seated, and whether the online event or the visit should guide the host’s attire?
GENTLE READER: The simple answer is to dress for the meeting, as the host is merely providing an entrance to that. But also not to violate decency laws by leaving home without pants.
However, Miss Manners considers the real problem here to be that it is time to retire that joke about not wearing pants when their absence will not be visible. You tried it, and your friend tried to make a joking reply, but neither went over. We are all very tired of it.