English Idioms

This man dresses to the right

None of my UK friends know the meaning of this idiom. Thanks a million to help me. Azuline


  • I've never been a taylor myself, but I know it's important for them to make the pants look all right, if they want to make masculinity obvious ...or not. Some of us dress to the right, some others to the left, none in the middle as far as I know (perhaps there are statistics about it ?) and it's not correlated to the politics opinions, or what side of the road people drive...
  • First and foremost I want to congratulate Azuline for being called after a so nice ethereal character.

    According to Alumnus Alumni some men dress to a direction. I can't catch his shift, especially as he talks about pants. But let's hope Azuline is more clever and will got it.

    In spite of the explanations given by our graduated mate, I'd like to tell my views about ways of dressing oneself. I am nothing of a tailor in the real life but I have for long dreamt to be a tailor.
    I am going as if I had tailored scores of coats and jackets. Therefore I have watched how men dress in our societies riddled with conventions. What emerges from that close watching is that men and women differ in their way to do up their clothes. Let's tell at once that women jackets are seldom double-breasted with a wide overlap, they are most often fitted with a narrow overlap of fabric, sometimes with a single button. But as hashion goes in our societies, women's jackets are done up by overlaping the right side of the jacket over the left one.
    A pernickety Miss Neat should say that she overlaps her jacket to the left.
    Gentlemen for their part do the opposite. Used as they are to pay for the ladies, they hold their wallet in an inside pocket on the left side of the jacket. So to be at ease in sliding their right hand to the wallet, they use to overlap the left side of the jacket over the right side. At the British court the wardrobe dressers say that men do up their jacket by overlaping to the right.
    Would they say that men DRESS to the right? We'll let that question pending until a Whacky's clarification.

    Anyway I have my doubts about putting "to dress to the right" into any literary idoms file.

    Before leaving, I'd remind Azuline that all my wild imaginings are a dream.
  • Each night is a new little life.
    Either you sink into deep sleep and you are bound to live fantastic adventures, or you have a sleepless night and movies are scrolling through your mind.
    This was my fate last night. I couldn't sleep, turning and tossing in my bed. I couldn't get rid of these words posted by azuline whose British friends didn't ever serve in the army of Her Most Gracious Majesty.
    I for one couldn't either. Yet as I am not a British citizen. What's more, I am not settled enough for any military duty. But when being a teenager I was taken for a tour in London by our orphanage boarding monitor. I can remember that we had to attend a drill of the Royal Guard. The Royal Guards were given blunt orders. One of them was "Dress to the right" uttered this way: "Dressssssss... to the (short blank) RIGHT", a last word that sounded like a shot. At once the guards turned their face to the right in a jerk, except the man posted at the extreme right. I wished one of the men dressed to the left in order to see what would happen. But none of them dared to do so, Royal Guards are obedient with a quelled brain.

    So, azuline, that is the state of the matter at the moment (after last night leading to this very June 18.)
    "Dress to the right" is an order listed in the military phraseology for drill sessions.

    Before leaving, I'd remind azuline that all my today's chatter is not a dream, just pure memory.
  • Once again I turned and tossed all night long in my bed, azuline's concern turning and tossing non-stop in my hectic brain.
    All of a sudden I was taken to a London sleazy bar somewhere in Church Lane. Two unionists were busy settling a tricky job against the cops at the forthcoming demonstration against Cameron's policy.

    Bob the striker: While I put the Molotov thing through the grid, ye stand at the crossroads for the stakeout.
    Jack who has a finger in every dirty pie: Gotcha.
    Bob: If a cop happened to show, you cough loudly.
    Jack: But how coulda watch out every street at the same time? We need a further stooge to make it. Maybe we'd ask a Joe the plumber to make do.
    Bob: Forget it ! That guy dresses to the right.
    Jack, staring wide-eyed: Yeah!!! Can't believe my ears.
    Bob: Each and every week Joe the plumber buys the Sunday Telegraph and reads it form A to Z.
    [the story tells that Bob and Jack read now and then The Guardian.]

    So a drill order has turned metaphorical.
    The verb "dress", from Middle French "dresser", to put straight, has the first meaning "to make or set straight". It has been fit on troops which are compelled to align in a straight line, namely at the drill. To "dress ranks" troops have to align, i.e. to look to a common direction to check the alignment.
    "Carried beyond" (meta-phorein) the expression turned "Having (intellectual or moral)views in a direction", so "dressing to that direction".
    Neither Catherine Ashton, nor Martin Schultz could be suspected of dressing to the right. But once upon a time, about a man going by the name of Blair, citizens could say "That man dresses to the right" at least on foreign policy.

    This latest interpretation of the statement "this man dresses to the right" might better suit our ethereal azuline.

    However, before leaving, I'd remind azuline that the world hasn't been built in one day, nor in one night. Yahve is said to spend 6 days to create the world, he was exhausted on the seventh.
    It's up to you, azuline, to make up your mind right now, or - wiser option - wait and see what the coming nights have in store for us.
  • there are some answers on http://www.blurtit.com/q826679.html
    Sleep well ! or think well !
  • Good to us. Alumnus Alumni is back with an explanation. According to his latest post, 'to dress right' would be short for 'to dress to the right'. No wonder, as we've known for long that English always takes shortcuts. Though, that explanation doesn't match his former note posted on the 17th. There he dropped a hint to 'pants'!

    As a matter of fact I came across such an interpretation dealing with pants the last but one night. The night-brownie coming to me had a wink at me and a cast towards the Alumnus Alumni's first post.
    That made at once spring a memory to my mind.
    I was 11 or so when a burst of smallpox happened in my boarding house. The boys who were pubescent, or on their way to be, had an orchitis as a secundary disease. With orchitis the bollocks painfully swell. But after recovering the bollocks are bound to dwindle, and one of the two gets smaller than the other. Even without any orchitis process, the testicles differ in size. Have a close look, azuline, to your boyfriends' bollocks. You'll see it's quite easy to make them straight in size. The smaller bollock is likely to give way to the dingeling, so hanging that side. Nowadays men in our countries are used to wearing tight underspants that hold their privates tight against the body. But in other times or other places the penis keeps hanging either in the right leg or the left leg of the trousers.
    As a man has his dingeling in the right leg of his pants, you'll say "That man dresses right". Likewise for the left.
    Would you know more about that meaning of the statement, switch to http://www.vgg.com/tp/tp_091100_DressLeft.html
    Rob Terrel will tell you more.

    Now then, I don't think this new interpretation of your sentence coud suit you, azuline. Why? There are many reasons. Among others, dealing with pants and bollocks is not the fairest business for the ethereal figure you are. Moreover, telling that a man "dresses right or left" according the engaged leg of his pants, you need an adverb (right, left), whereas a man who "dresses to the right" implies that the report would use a noun (right).

    Be it as it may, azuline, it's about time you made up your mind and tell us which meaning you choose.
    Would you be fashion addicted, you'd choose the way of doing up one's jacket.
    Would you fancy watching the changing of the guard, you'd pick up the military option.
    Would you be scared of the present worldwide crisis, you'd boo any man who dresses to the right.
    It's up to you, azuline, but, please, don't keep silent. I would be bound to figure out that, either you posted your question only to show up, or that you are away yet not caring less what it could mean dressing to the right.
    Talking to a brick wall makes me feeling lonely.
    Fortunately, Alumnus Alumni is there to soothe my despair.
  • Yes good old Chap, so many one shot users and fakes also...we are listening to you, Azuline, it is just as you like :)
  • "Hey! A call through the night? Hey! She gave a start.
    It is an azuline playing the bleeding heart by launching a hard tip to dead GGusers as to resuscitate that too many losers."

    Azuline ! You don't want to tell who you are, come on...and see what the Poet writes about you ! make an answer and explain what is your bleeding heart.
  • From Alumnus Alumni:
    Yes good old Chap, so many one shot users and fakes also...we are listening to you, Azuline, it is just as you like :)

    but what do we like ? imean, really like.

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