On a lighter than usual note…happy Sunday. I figured that it was time for some randomanalia and irreleventia for a change. You know, some impertinence—like the old days. The infrequency of my stories seems to have resulted in me writing tear jerkers when I do. I promise this one will spare you my sleight of hand, “here, look at these clothes” and then BAM, slam you with some gut wrenching update about my mom or other optical waterworks inducing subplots regarding my self-contrived crucible.
As a matter of fact, I’ve done a one-eighty on my mom just as she’s done on us. She has her wheelchair ramp, courtesy of one of the kindest general contractors in Florence (And of course my financial largesse, which by the way, is getting less lar-jay by the minute) and is now able to re-join the outside world. To that end, I expect her to have a part-time job, at minimum, by this coming Friday. I’m serious. No more of this propped up on a hospital bed in the family room, lounging around doing crossword puzzles, watching the Food Network and otherwise living for the moment that Wheel of Fortune and Jeopardy come on. I mean. Come on.
My rental property rehab days are finally over. I attached a towel rack to a bathroom and put two more knobs on cabinet doors this week and I’m done. And when I say that I’m done I mean that I will never attempt this again. Actually I won’t have to do such a dramatic rehab again since the place is now back to rental property—"visualize this as your home, prospective tenant"—neutral. Now I just need a tenant. Please. Hurry.
The joy and fun of moving into a little cottage with great bones that offers a stage for me to reinterpret the ADG foppish man-cave…you know…with all my caricature-toy soldiers-rugs-etchings and other Attention Deficit Disorder Country Ass Meets the Hovey Sisters nuances…has really yet to manifest.
Don’t get me wrong. There have been flurries. But my time and energy have been mostly focused on sorting out the Old Town place. So it’s hard to return from the drywall re-do, nine coats of primer to hide someone’s crazy-ass idea about making a bedroom look like Ralph Lauren’s walk-in damn closet—and then—with prematurely arthritic elbow joints from all of the repetitive (everything one must do to mitigate the half-assness of previous home design accomplishments goat rodeos involves repetitive—motion) motion, giddily ideate how to do the same damn thing in your new/old digs that you are killing yourself to vanquish elsewhere. Crazy. I did manage to devote a wall to my images of Jimmy Whistler.
And the Marlborough Club caricatures, courtesy of Bertie hiring Carlo Pellegrini to draw them, are in the hall.
And Walter Greaves' pastel of Whistler on the Battersea Bridge, along with James Pryde's image of his brother-in-law, William Nicholson ride shotgun above Ernest Haskell's Whistler.
I’m confident that as things settle down over the next month or so, I’ll be able to enjoy my new place. And I’ll have the unhurried and less burdened time to tweak things here and there and hang another whatever—and God knows—I’ve got an overabundance of whatevers—on the rapidly diminishing wall space. I’m also shedding another round of accumulata. Honestly, I was a bit shocked to see in one place, the aggregate of stuff that I’d piled up and into my office in Old Town, my CasaMinimus and a storage unit that I’ve had around the corner for years. How can one person amass so much sh_t?
I’m not a hoarder…but only due to one significant characteristic. Hoarders literally cannot let go of anything. You’ve seen that pitiful show on television. When gently prompted to relinquish seven of their nine-thousand, sticky with residual fountain syrup, wax-paper drink cups from Dairy Queen; those people amp-up and go berserk. Or they deflate and sulk and cry.
Or they launch into a machine-like manifesto, explaining why they have to think about it for a month or so before they finally decide. Butcept that’s the only thing that keeps me from being lumped right in there with ‘em. I’m happily thinning out my cache of tasty accretions and a few of you readers are already recipients of some of it. And there’s a lot more to come. And go. Shut up.
The exception to not having the physical and emotional fuel to daub paint and transform this new place is our work on LFG’s bedroom. Instead of water-thin Glidden ceiling paint at nineteen dollars a gallon, my baby deserved Benjamin Moore. They should call that stuff Benjamin More. Damn.
So LFG picked a faintly blue-ish white to transform the putty like hue of her bedroom into what’s gonna be a really nice nest for her when we finish. Better paint is worth the money. The stuff went on like butter. Thirty one dollars per gallon More than Glidden.
And as I ponder LFG’s wall color choice and newly selected color and pattern of her pillow cases and duvet cover, I see a young lady. I see someone who in three years has transformed from the little girl who giddily helped me slop vivid paint colors on her bedroom walls as we made her bedroom look like the sequelae from Dr. Seuss and Barney having a wrestling match with the Grateful Dead—to a young lady with decided ideas about how to create a minimalist, uncomplicated palette in her new bedroom. Whose child is this?
Here’s her Old Town bedroom in case you’ve forgotten what a mosh pit of color caca we created over there. Lordy.
Ok so let’s go random for a bit. First up…a Belgians lesson. Do not go over to your rental property with Belgians on and decide to touch up a few things.
Here we have my blue Belgians…still amidst the pre-rubber sole break-in period…now adorned with Valspar High Gloss White…paint. I’m thinking about launching a Jackson Pollock inspired Belgians collaboration. Butcept one of the greatest things about the Belgian Shoe sovereigns is that they don’t give a damn about branding and collaboration and all of the other dressed by the Internet hipster irony that’s part of the edgy sartorial oeuvre. Bottom line is that you shouldn’t paint cabinets when wearing your Belgians.
And it’s not like I don’t have designated shoddings for such endeavors. Just didn’t have them with me at the time.
Let’s go from shoddings to socks. By the way, and this is Florence County South Carolina talking, if the socks cost more than ten dollars a pair, they’re hose. Yep. It’s a prissy word no doubt. But you just can’t call something that costs more than what an ounce of dope cost in 1974…socks. Not my rule—and God knows I’m not bashful about admonishments and rules—but I’m abiding by it. Oh, and for the record, seriously, I have no idea what an ounce of dope costs today. "V.K. Nagrani" ... sounds like a combination Campari-esque drink and a personal lubricant. "Baby, take a sip of THIS!" Shut up.
The lovely diamond spritzed leg sheathings preened above are from Coffman’s in Greenville, North Carolina. One of the highlights of the last year has been discovering this little sartorial oasis that’s about forty minutes off the beaten track of my I-95 to mama’s house sojourn.
Chief Hog Farmer F. Todd Howell sent me a gaggle of socks to say yes-no to. FTH, knowing full well that I lack the willpower to say no to all of them, assured himself some level of register ringing ROI for his effort. After all, there's baby formula to buy. "Baby, take a sip of THAT!" So I kept three and sent three back.
And finally, a quick up and back last Monday to Gotham saw me lunching with a sartorial legend and our stunning mutual friend…a woman to whom I proposed marriage after one glass of wine. A daytime record for me. And no, my sartorial legend lunch mate wasn’t George Frazier. As my friend ADF said regarding the housekeeper’s response shouted above the vacuum cleaner whir, to her inquiry regarding where the family dog was when Sparky failed to meet her at the door… “He dead!” Surely I’d a given a pretty penny to've had lunch with Frazier at Locke-Ober's…replete with his standing order of Finnan Haddie and a Bloody Mary—with a dash of celery salt. R.I.P. Frazier, Locke-Ober's and Sparky.
No. I popped the Frazier photo in here because of his Russell Plaid suit. I’m on the record for having an insatiable curiosity about Russell Plaid for quite some time now. But it’s a tricky medium and even though I didn’t know exactly what I wanted. I knew for certain what I didn’t. And most of what I’ve seen on the rack, I didn’t.
I’ll leave the rest of the Russell story for later when the finished work rolls in. For now though, trust me when I tell you that this one’s gonna be a doozy.
A doozy. Yep, it’s worth using that descriptor one more time as my blessed life has been one for most of 2013. The warm weather stunner above was supposed to be my Spring-Summer 2013 go-to fun jacket. And I began the bespokeydoke process with Rykken et al on this one way back in November 2012. But then my world blew up and it was last Monday that I finally got ‘round to the next to the last fitting. The thing’s been sitting in Paul Stuart for almost a year. Good news is that I’ll be busting warm-weather 2014 wide open in it. Maybe.
Ok, that’s it. Time to prep for Toronto. Leaving on Monday to help the Canadians figure out how to get long acting anti-schizophrenia medicines bumped up to preferred reimbursement status by the Provincial health plans. And you thought all I knowed about was…. Whatever.