There are many things you can wear to work if your aim is to get fired. For our vast female readership, I suggest a poorly proportioned Hooters outfit. The man in your life can simply sport a commemorative tie of a city’s rival team days after a crushing playoff loss, and while the city is still busy crucifying its quarterback.

Yep, that should do it, apparently. Just ask Chicago car salesman John Stone.

Less than 24 hours after the Bears’ loss to Green Bay, and with Jay Cutler jerseys still burning brightly, Stone–pictured above–arrived at work Monday wearing a Packers tie. Hours later, he was leaving work early, but still proudly wearing his tie.

Stone, a now former employee at Webb Chevrolet in suburban Chicago, was given two options by Jerry Roberts, the dealership’s general manager. The ultimatum was to either remove the tie, or be removed from your job. Stone chose door No. 2 and joined the unemployment line, but only briefly. He landed back on his feet Tuesday morning after getting a gig at another Chevy dealership, a quick turnaround no doubt helped by the whirlwind of publicity.

An enraged Stone told his story to the Chicago Sun-Times. He is a father of two who had only worked at Webb Chevrolet for a month-and-a-half, but he had been quite successful, selling 14 cars. Customers hadn’t complained, and in fact had a sense of humour about Stone’s choice of attire. Optics was the root cause of the firing, as the dealership maintains an advertising agreement with the Bears and spends $20,000 a month to be an official sponsor.

“He said, ‘You have two options,’ ” a furious Stone said later Monday. “Remove the tie, or you’re fired.”

“When I didn’t, he said, ‘You can leave, you’re fired.’ Does that sound fair to you?”

Stone’s timing may have been poor, but this is a case of advertising and the business of sports clashing with common sense and fair treatment.

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