Film producer and political consultant Francis O'Brien, one of the best dressed men in this town, has always been outspoken about his preference for wool and cotton. "I'm notorious for criticizing things made of synthetics," says O'Brien.

So wouldn't you know it? When Esquire magazine came to town, O'Brien was asked to be one of several Washington notables to be photographed at the National Portrait Gallery for a future issue. He describes the sweater Esquire gave him to wear as "the worst sweater, the worst thing made of plastic." His friends called it justice: "I get one modeling job and it is to wear polyester."

The pain continued after the shooting. He was asked by an editor of the magazine to say something about the clothes and "I could barely give her half a sentence." He told her to call back the following day. O'Brien, who was the producer of "Gallipoli" and the press secretary to vice presidential candidate Geraldine Ferraro, returned to his office and sought the help of six colleagues to come up with some thoughts on the sweater.

The phone rang when O'Brien arrived at his office the following morning and O'Brien called out, "If it's Esquire, tell 'em I've died."

Others in the Esquire fashion layout include Nancy Reagan's chief of staff, James Rosebush, Sen. Pete Wilson, and Deputy Treasury Secretary Dick Darman.