He's part of it now - no matter how grudging he might be in accepting that. There's no going back to T-shirts and hoodies.
As Zuckerberg sat in a single extra-padded seat pulled up to a modest table in front of 42 members of the Senate who were there to talk Russia, Cambridge Analytics and invasion of privacy, his eyes were wide and occasionally darted around the packed room. He nodded slightly as Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, delivered a brief history of Facebook.
The witness managed not to grimace when Grassley enunciated Zuck-er-berg as if he'd only laid eyes on the name moments before. The tech entrepreneur sipped and sipped on water as he listened to Sen. Bill Nelson, D-Fla., drawl "lied" into a three-syllable accusation.
Zuckerberg did not look at ease. He did not look cocky. He did not have the demeanor of the smartest and most impressive guy in the room. He looked like a 33-year-old man burdened with having to explain technology to legislators who are more than twice his age and don't really want to hear about how users can change their settings; they just want him to fix what's wrong with the damn thing.
Zuckerberg was dressed in a navy suit that looked rather large for his modest frame. His shirt collar was most certainly too big and his pale blue tie was knotted so loosely that it hung from his neck as if it had been pre-tied and quickly looped over his head. He was wearing the tie, but he clearly didn't want to be. There was no hint of pride in his appearance. No personal flair or polish. Everything about his attire was perfunctory. He could have done better, and he has. He wore a better fitting jacket back in 2011 during a town hall meeting at Facebook headquarters with President Barack Obama. He looked rather elegant in 2015 when he and his wife Priscilla Chan attended a state dinner at the White House. Zuckerberg did not give Capitol Hill his sartorial all.
One suspects that once Zuckerberg finishes his Washington grilling, he will return to Silicon Valley and to his T-shirts and hoodies.
Zuckerberg is one of the suits now. He has to be. The question is whether he can ever get comfortable in one.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)