Sunday, December 26, 2010

The Christmas Aftermath and Trad Miscellany

It’s 533am in ADG land and not a creature is stirring ‘cause I’m the onliest creatsture (As Ernest T. Bass would pronounce it) in the house. And I’m rested at 533am because I fell asleep real early last night. 430am arrived early Christmas morning—not by design per se but I was gonna get up at 5 anyway.
Christmas eve and morning were great culminations of what was a harried two weeks leading up.  If you wanna more thorough rundown on the LFG/ADG Christmas tree, I refer you to last year’s post for an ornament, by ornament manifestation of our eclectirandoyulishness.
Wow, what a difference another blessed year makes and wow, how quickly this one blew by. Last year our tree was up by the typical 2.5 to 3 weeks before Christmas. This year LFG and I were lucky to get the thing up at all. We are no less manifest in Yule cheer but it’s just been maniacally busy for us all. As I think of it, the idea of not getting on a plane until January 6th is more comforting than most of you can probably understand. And yes, I repaired the “blowed up Saab”…only time will tell if rescinding my decision to “not put another penny in this thing” was a good one.
Our Old Angler’s Inn get together with LFG’s mom was so nice—in every way. I’ve said it to the point of redundancy…as long as we remain focused on what’s best for LFG; we are fine amidst these special occasion summits. Old Angler’s had a nice little menu for Christmas Eve and being our little princess, LFG was allowed to go off the menu and pounce on a cheeseburger.
The Santa visit manifested visual evidence that LFG is not a cuddly little baby anymore. Clothes and electronics pretty much did it for this gal. Her “big” gifts this year were a replacement pair of Uggs and the Nook reader from Barnes and Noble. Uggs need replacing a couple of times each year because they provoke, at least from my child, an odiferous funkorama that scares me.
And the Nook…LFG begged and begged for this thing—for months. I’ll still insist (we’ll see how that goes) that she read regular books but here’s my bottom line on e-books…If the vehicle will enhance my child’s already strong appetite for books; if this platform will synergize even slightly, her love affair with words then I’m all in.
I won’t personally relent till I get an iPad…which is inevitable. But I like owning my regular books. I revel in the therapeutic unguent that two hours in a used bookshop offers me. I love that cerebral sleight of hand I inflict upon myself when I rationalize the expenses associated with my used bookshop forays as well as my dangerously capricious Amazon One-Click impulsivity. I’ll have the Larry McMurtry autobiographical trilogy finished by tonight and I’ve concluded that McMurtry, sitting down in his Hay-on-Wye attempt called Archer City Texas, writes books and screenplays to finance his addiction to collecting books. Actual books…you know, the ones whose pages can be fingered and re-read and dog eared and whose tight spines, despite the admonishment of the ancient librarian Miss Duffeld, late of Royall Elementary school, can be hyper bent-back amidst the glue crackling, for better page turning. Well there you damn go. All the reason in the world that for me, e-books won’t ever completely replace the real thang.
So LFG got all jazzed up over her orange covered Nook and we scurried soon thereafter to the airport and a handoff to mommy.
Nothing sad or somber here. My little gal’s just not quite awake yet. And no I didn’t endanger either of us while snapping these little shots. The iPhone 4 offers a reverse mechanism for shooting pictures. You just hold it over your shoulder and click away. One’s bound to be a decent enough snap to make the blog cut. Leastways by my definition of decent. Shut the ____________.
Whew. Let’s talk togs and shoddings. One of my nicest little surprise gifts was a navy blue box from Ralph. One your fellow readers bestowed upon me two pairs of great Fair Isle socks for Christmas. Nice.
And thanks again M.O. for the socks. I wore a pair yesterday. With Alden shell cordovan tassels…colour #8.
Colour #8 is the classic Alden ox blood-burgundy tone that shell cordovan is mostly known for. But I gotta tell you, the Alden shell cordovan tassel classic in what Alden calls Cigar is a stunningly patinated contrivance. The evidence above is courtesy of Elegantologist…my buddy Chris from Easy and Elegant Life. Santa bought him at my urging, a pair of Cigar shell cordovan tassels. He wore ‘em all day yesterday. Who knows, the boy may be sleeping in them right now.
My week in shoes. Just the kind of random eclectasy that had it not manifested during a week of no travel, one should worry. My travel week in shoes is just the opposite…one pair. It’s a tactic that is crucial for me to manifest my no-checked-luggage strategy. And how did that strategy play out in 2010? Perfect actually. I checked a bag once…when I went to London last January. Sorry but I’ve said it before, in a fact positing way, not in a braggadocios crow, that it’s easier being a guy.
Braggadocios Crow…shit…I’ve gotta try my hand at writing a short story...if for no other reason than to use that name for a character. Braggadocios Crow…man…he’s either an Atticus Finch archetype or a farmer or a wide receiver for the Dallas Cowboys.  
I’ve never tried my hand at fiction that I’ve declared up front to be so. This entire blog is a sham so that I suppose, is one version of fiction right there. But let me give Mr. Crow a shot at life. “Bragg Crow represented anyone in Prunella County who needed a lawyer. And more often than not he was paid with chickens and butter…or a desperate promise of money sure to come, now that the farm was vaguely out of foreclosure.” 
Or... “On Sundays Bragg Crow could always be found on the front pew, white dress shirt buttoned to the neck but awaiting the necktie that was not to be. Cleaning up for church was as important as being in church but a necktie always eluded Bragg Crow. Maybe if he wore one, the rain his crops so desperately needed—the rain he so anxiously mumbled for in prayer—might finally arrive, before it was once again, too late.”
Or… “Braggadocios DeLamante Crow was off the game day and the practice clock. The wide receiver was wide-ass open tonight but not in pads. Bling and champagne replaced tape and steroids as adornments for assuring victory. Tonight his three touchdown game would manifest in victory over one  LaShonda Veronique Scipio, head cheerleader for his team. Rules be damned, he and Ms. Scipio were hot tub bound and he’d just have to pay the thirty thousand dollar fine for cavorting with Shonda’nique’s pom-poms.”
Ok, I won’t quit my day job. Shut up. But look at these fuzzies! I found my way to the Conrad Hasselbach website courtesy of Laguna Beach Trad links and found this. This Prussian manifuzzstation of tasselocity. Hold me back.
But only after you release me long enough to consider taking vert title to these grĂ¼n shoddings. Again, even though it’s the holidays. Shut up.
And finally, with all of the randomosity aside, what was the most enduring gift that you gave this season? My Christmas card from a long time friend in Houston exemplified giving in the truest sense. She has a friend who now has a renewed lease on life, courtesy of one of her kidneys. God bless you both.
Merry Christmas from the Royal East Kents Regiment.


Reggie Darling said...

Merry Christmas to you, ADG. I most heartedly agree with several of the points you ably raise here. I cannot bring myself to get an electronic book...yet. I do so love holding the tome and flipping through pages. And Reggie loves the Bragg Crow series--why not write all three and have them then meet serendipidously one day? I am sure they would either come to blows or an agreement of some sort. Your kidney-giving friend fills Reggie with awe and admiration, and certainly puts it all in perspective. I do, however, take exception to those two-tone tasseled loafers, but I suppose de gustibus non est disputandem. And I do like show tunes, by the way. Reggie

ADG said...

Reggie...Indeed, I'll give the Bragg Crow thang some consideration. I'm thinking something like Brokeback Mountain runs into North Dallas Forty during a Boo Radley pre-trial hearing.

And one other thing...I had to ride the de gustibus in college. Spring Break 1982...full of other drunks, sunburned and hurling...both insults and gastric contents, while tethered to each other by those little plastic disposable handcuffs.

Southern H and H said...

I have refused an e-reader because there IS something to having an actual book in hand....and on my shelves. But....the thought of the instant gratification of a new read at the click of a button is appealing too. Damn technology.

SouthernProletariat said...

As I have mentioned to you before, the e-readers will never replace books for all the sensory issues you mentioned. However, you cannot beat the convenience of downloading a book instantly, or enroute to a vacation. There have been numerous times I have downloaded a book for the girls on my Kindle and passed it back to them on a long car ride. She will enjoy it, and it will be another tool in her arsenal of learning.

Now, I'll leave the shoe comments to my "betters"...its back to the dustbins or maybe the grits ;)

Death Bredon said...

Merry Christmas! You really pull off the Fair Isle stockings amazingly well. Best wishes for 2011 to you and yours.

Suburban Princess said...

Merry Christmas!

I used to travel back and forth to London with just carry on - but those were back in the days when carry on would hold 4 days worth of outfits and toiletries. Too bad anything larger than a dvd case has to be checked now!

I am doing the opposite shoe dance...I have lived in duck shoes since Tuesday!

RHW said...

MMmm, looked like fun my friend. No iPad or Alden 8's under my tree this year but that is ok seeing as how I'm so damn picky I actually want to make the stalk, take the shot, and bag these prizes time, o yes, in time.

Greetings to you and yours and I hope you get to stay home and out of the snow (well, at leastwhich off an aeroplane thing).


Anonymous said...

Merry Holidays to you. I have had an iPad since they came out because I am a MacAddict. I hate to admit it but it really isn't something that I couldn't live without, like say, my cell phone or laptop. It DOES make a nice little email reader and internet surfer for travel. For a woman, it becomes a purse thang. Fits right in there along with your long-haired Chihuahua. Yall have been speaking of travel. I am a palpable page lover, as well. I used to have to carry an extra duffle for books whenever I went away for more than two days. I can keep 5 to 10 books in rotation in any given week. So. Downloading a lot of books on an eReader is the way to go now with luggage weight restrictions and such. An added feature is that a lot of the classics are free. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Jane Austen. Agatha Christie. Winston Churchill. The Brontes. Sinclair Lewis. Kurt Vonnegut. Oscar Wilde. Mark Twain. Virginia Woolf. On and on. Having said that......I would NOT get an iPad for reading. It's screen is impossible to read anywhere but indoors. Like your iPhone. I do most of my reading indoors so it isn't a problem. Or I take a REAL book outdoors. The iPad is a computer. If your laptop is attached to you by an umbilical cord I would get a Nook or Kindle for designated reading. The screen resolution is glorious on those machines. I will say that I like my iPad because I don't have to take my laptop with me to be "connected" and the Pad is a lot easier to play on than my phone. It is also great for Solitaire and Mah Jong junkies. (How does she know this?)

I like that LFG got an origami set to play with. I am also a paper artist (don't yall throw away any old books or encyclopedias! Send 'em to me) Folding paper is a wonderful way to introduce geometry, sculpture and pattern to a young person.
Check out some of the brethren:

Anonymous said...

Ooops. Forgot this link. Feast your eyes on this stuff:

Easy and Elegant Life said...

I sleep in the Belgians... The shell cordovan is too heavy and Mrs. E. complains that I kick like a mule in my sleep.

James said...

Do you remember McMurtry's Sam the Lion? My late life defining quote is his. "Old age just don't fit me". The rear view mirror is a work of art. Of course look at the subject matter!

Scott said...

Had a surprise gift from my old Frat pals, the ones I was telling you about; one of those Kindle thingies. Now, I like actual books just as much as you do. I wouldn't take nothin' for Buchan's five Richard Hannay novels I just collected and read in period volumes. But given my current transient existence, I thought the Kindle a very thoughtful and appropriate gift. Wish I'd had it before I bought Obama's Wars. Great homework for me, but not destined to have much of a shelf life.


Belle (from Life of a...) said...

Merry Christmas to you, ADG.

Young Fogey said...

Them Trickers boots will be just the thing to wear to the BCS Champeenship game this season, though personally, I prefer these shoddings. Go Ducks!

Anonymous said...

The Cigar Alden tassels are superb- no more faggy shoddings for you. (I treated myself to a pair of Ravello LHS this year.)

I keep hoping that B&N or somebody will come up with an option such that if you, say, buy the paper book, for an extra buck or two, you can also download the book to a device, thus giving you the best of both worlds.

Anonymous said...

my husband thanks you for validating him...he too has the blue Beaners which are only made in ladies so he had to order them in his size....teased mercilessly by our children! And he would like to know about the Trickers...Happy New Year! Ginny

NCJack said...

Bragandon Montesquieu Crowe-Smythe-Crowe IV sashayed into his club, and struck a pose in the Grille Roome doorway. He knew the light reflecting off the silver Old Ale Jug (for tiddlywinks victory over the Drones) would highlight his Godawful green goresided booties to perfection

Merry Christmas, bubba, it snowed!! back home in the NC/SC swamplands

ADG said...

NcJack...yes! My mama is all excited about the dusting of snow down there. Figgers that Crow(e) would have on my boots. Merry Christmas.

GinnyBlueBeaners...Ginny baby...may I call you baby at least for this bit of news? My Beaners aren't blue. They are the standard brown and let me tell you, your husband needs to get rid of those blue ones today. And this is coming from slipper man.


YoungFogey...I figured you'd like the greenies.

Belle...and to you. Did y'all get a dusting of snow in Charleston?

Scott...point well made, considering your destination for the next year. don't fit me either!

ADG said...

AnonIpadFoldedPaper....LFG and I LOVE pop-up books...I know the engineers/artists/creators don't like for them to be called something so basic...given the anything but basic effort that goes into their creation. We bought our first ones at the Hirschorn in Washington. Thanks for your perspective on these e-devices. Because of things that you and others mention, I'm not going to invest in any of them just yet. I love the iPad but my deal is that if I still have to travel with my laptop, then I don't want to add another piece of equipment to the kit.

Eleganto...I mix it up. Usually according to who I'm sleeping with on a given night.

RHW...your stalk, kill, skin eat metaphor reminds me of what I say to my business partners when we discuss commissions for our work. And yes, I'm at home....maybe with a walk to the office one day this week...till January 6th.

Suburban...your Christmas all waaaay late...sorry! Is it gonna be duck boots again all this week?

DeathBreeMon...and to you!

SouthernProle...thanks. You and I are in lock step regarding the best outcome for our young'ns nollidge aquisition efforts. And I shut down the comments re dustbins/grits 'cause I felt it was gonna verge on a catfight and I ain't lettin' anyone pick on you.

Southern H& sound like me.

Anonymous said...

Ahhh! The picture makes them look blue..He'll be crushed! Course this is coming from a guy who refuses to wear his Belgians we bought after too many cocktails at PJ Clarkes...what size are you? Shoes that is!! Ginny

ADG said...

Ginny...WTF??? He'll wear blue bluchers and won't wear his Belgians? That boy needs to see somebody this week...for bloodwork and counselling. I wear a size 8.

Anonymous said...

"Feast your eyes on this stuff:...."

Oh my gosh, paper porn, give me more. I've been lusting after handmade books and miniature books for over a decade, I even get a notion from time to time that I'd like to try my hand which is when I bow to artists like you who actually go through with it and excel.

"Folding paper is a wonderful way to introduce geometry, sculpture and pattern to a young person."

Again, yes. And I found myself on the front line w/ 6 very small grandchildren when I remarried a year ago. They don't stand a chance with me, I got them going early with simple placecards, one fold, markers ready for decorating. There's a great packet of multi-colored all-sizes card stock at WalMart, all in one bag, perfect size for children. When the whole clan is here, we task the children with setting the table [a 10' farm table], going outside for sticks/pine cones/etc for putting together a long centerpiece, doing the place cards, the whole thing, they love it but best of all I love seeing them go after it full throttle.

Sorry, ADG, got carried away there. More coffee.

Anonymous said...


"..what was the most enduring gift that you gave this season?"

Such a good question. Certainly not a kidney, mmh mmh mmh, but I did give my brother an oriental rug, we're both insane rug nuts [and one day? ADG is going to finally ship me that rug-covered chaise of his, I don't CARE how funky it is!]. Crazy how we came from the same womb, he's a maximumalist and I'm in the extreme opposite direction. He's good for the economy and I'm good for, well, now we're back to the most enduring gift we gave this season which I hope was the gift of rich memories to 6 little children whose parents are so overwhelmed and so strapped and working so hard, they're sleepwalking through it just to keep things on track, and so we just went in the woods and walked and put stuff we found in bags and came back and "made art" and decorated the house. And they'll return next time and want to do it all over again, and that's when your heart breaks open and you realize they've given YOU the gift. Children will blow you away, won't they?

ilovelimegreen said...

Those green/yellow boots (? not sure if that is what they are?) look as if they were designed by Charlie Finley when he was re-designing the Oakland A's uniforms...or were they in KC at the time of the redesign?

(Love LFG's polka dot robe!)

Anonymous said...

My brother is out of work so I gave him health insurance for him and his wife who is recovering from a massive stroke. My nephew is finishing college and he works to pay his rent. I bought him car insurance so he can drive his car.He is doing an internship in San Francisco and needs to wear a suit everyday so I bought him two suits and shirts, ties, shoes and even socks. He is going to be graduating and looking for work so I set him up with three great interviews with CEOs in his field. This is my gift to my nephew and brother and sister-in-law. It may not all be "enduring" but it works for now.

CeceliaMc said...

Kindles seem like utilitarian and convenient gadgets that you'd use for certain instances, but nothing you'd want to fiddle with ordinarily.

Sort of like electric griddles.

CeceliaMc said...

"what was the most enduring gift that you gave this season?"

A promise to quit watching cable news and yelling at the tv.

Preppy 101 said...

I got your card!! Made my day!! Looking forward to the new year and my grandbaby in May. Happy New Year ADG. xoxo

CTS said...

Little late on the commenting, I know, but just wanted to make sure you knew that Presto Valet on Quaker Lane does rehab work on Uggs. Can't attest to their ability to staunch the odiferous funkerama (don't wear Uggs myself, have just seen the before/after pics on the register), but you may save at least one of those re-shoddings per anum. Cheers to you and yours for a happy, healthy 2011. Thanks for sharing!

Kathie Truitt said...

First of all I want to say that I love the fair isle socks. Believe it or not I have the Ralph Lauren sweater that matches perfectly, albeit it has to be a really, really cold day to wear it or it's just too uncomfortable (i.e. hot as hades) to wear.

Now, about the 'Nook', and it's kissin'-cousin, the 'Kindle'. Every author I know ('cept me) are panicked over these silly things. I don't understand why. I suppose they think they won't make as much money as they would over physical book sales, but I'm with you on this one. Whatever gets people to read I am all for. I just enjoy my quarterly royalty checks - I don't care whether it comes from Amazon, B&N, Borders, Books-a-Million, Kindle or Nook. It aaallll spends the same, thank you very much and my bank doesn't care from which the almighty dollar came.

Happy New Year!