Friday, December 26, 2014

The Texture of Christmas--2014

Texture-Pattern-Shape-Color…tactile and visual attributes. It’s no secret that the fuzzier for me the better. Until now.
Restraint? Well I’m not gonna go overboard. But I do think in my old-er age I might be pulling back just a teeny bit from my Southern, country ass, GTH togged “look at me, look at me” cornpone sprezzatura. Who knows, maybe I’m unwittingly slipping into a phase of official mourning. Somber, black crepe hanging attire included. Queen Victoria did it after Albert died. And God knows she loved Albert better than Peter loved the Lord. That’s almost as much as I loved my mama. False alarm. I just realized that if you’ve unwittingly slipped into something, it’s kinda hard to then deem it official upon arrival. Hold me. I’m confused. Unofficially.

Case in point regarding my new, albeit just a teeny-tiny scooch over towards modulated fuzzy moderation…I took a pass on this orange corduroy Ralph jacket the other day. I’m only six weeks into orphanhood and it just seemed damn wrong on all levels to consider taking title to it. Plus I didn’t go to Clemson or Princeton or Tennessee or Florida or any of those other schools that claim orange as one of their school hues.
But forty years of mourning? I do think Victoria took it a bit too far. What with only wearing black and refusing to leave Balmoral for ages on end and using nothing but black bordered mourning stationery for the rest of her chubby little roly-poly life. Johnny Cash is the only fella who had the color black’s permission to singularly don it for decades on end. And he wasn’t mourning a damn thing.
Apropos of her forty years of black creped-ness, Vanity Fair reissued their original portrait of Queen Victoria in monochrome black with a mourning border when she finally joined Albert and Jesus in 1901.
Here’s the colorful original version from Vanity Fair—June 17 1897.
And another thing about Queen Victoria before we move on…What we don’t know for sure is whether or not she was getting some real bereavement comfort from her trusted ghillie John Brown. I sure hope so. And I’m not just talking about the therapeutic benefits of long walks and talks. We all know that they did a bunch of that. Lord knows I can talk. And walking still comes easy. I’m thinking I need me one of them constant bereavement companions for a while. Butcept a girl one. With benefits.
The texture of my 2014 Christmas has so far been rough and smooth. I’m alone but not lonely. My heart is still heavy—now magnified by this being the first Christmas without my mama—but I’m not wallowing in it. I drove home yesterday. In a MINI Cooper. John Cooper Works performance edition to be exact ("Performance Edition"MINI...ain't that a hoot?)...with my prostate seven inches off of I-95 for 7.5 hours. I need another car. And a smaller...
I’m typing this from my childhood cowboy bedroom and the monastic silence of being here alone isn’t depressing at all. LFG is in Florida, my brother is around the corner at his house and I’ve reconnected with a bunch of childhood friends who are here for the holidays. So I’m by myself in this once boisterous and noisy holiday house but I’m ok. I had a visceral, primal need to be here so here I am.
A tree? Of course. I’ll never have an artificial one but since I was solo this Christmas I didn’t need a big one of any type. So I nabbed a piccolo fir and just donned it with my favorite ornaments.
And thanks to Susie and Dougie for sending me presents. Otherwise the tree wouldn’t a been the only thing attenuated.
Back to texture and pattern...I had to put on real clothes the other day and make some business and personal rounds. And I coulda put on some GTH Christmas corduroy embroidered caca trousers and some retail red waistcoating like all the other holiday revellers. But I didn’t. Remember, I’m in mourning.
So it was a navy blazer and my Daddy Flusser semi-GTH Bronco Buster wool challis togs. Oh, and my Meermins which are holding up just fine in year-two by the damn way. Shut up. 
And I even got a mourning haircut. I figure another year and my follicular vacancies will be such that I’ll go back to cutting the remaindered sprigs myself.

My bereavement is evident in this Polo Chevy Chase selfie that I took while out and about. Time will bring back my smirky little pinch mouthed puckishness. But time has deemed six weeks not enough.
Oh, and by the way…don’t dress like this and visit a retail establishment lest you want them to think you work there. I don’t.
And I tried on a few things that I can’t buy. Including this bereavement brown vest. Buy it for me.
Maybe brown is my mourning color.
Kinda. Brownish green-essence with a green leather club chair. I mean really…how damned crepe laden can a fuzzy-ass flâneur like me become?
Brown. It’s a restrained color ain’t it? But who says the texture-pattern thang has to be? I vote no and you should too.
I’m gonna close this drivel load now. It’s off to the shower and off to lunch. Christmas just ain't Christmas this year. But it's ok.

Onward. Rough and Smooth.


NCJack said...

Crossed I-95 on US74 heading to Charlotte from lovely Fairmont, spotted the Florence sign and thought about you, Bubba. Merry Christmas, and I'm glad to see you back on the bandwaves.

LPC said...

You're still pretty dang fuzzy. I sense, perhaps in error, a wise tone to your voice. Older, tireder, wiser. A little sadder. I wish you a very Happy New Year D. And to LFG.

Gail, northern California said...

You're in desperate need of a good, long hug, Max.

ilovelimegreen said...

I unfortunately have the same sentiments about Christmas as you this year. But remember this - love is stronger than death.

Anonymous said...

Ingress and egress say " we got your bereavement right here, Brownie Boy!"

ADG said...

NC Jackie...I'm in Florence til Tuesday. You should beep the horn when you come by. Also, email me at I have something for you.

LPC...your observations are not in error. I'm mellow. But I'm also tired.

Gail...thx. Indeed.

LimeGreener...sometimes I wonder.

Anon...Brown is the new...brown.

Pigtown*Design said...

Thinking of you this festive season... especially in Cross Keys. And who knew you already had cheetah shoes?


BethAnn said...

The Metropolitan Museum of Art has a great exhibit on mourning dress. I saw it over Thanksgiving and was impressed. I think you would enjoy it, revel in it even, if one can revel in a mourning dress exhibit. Thinking of you and hope all is well.

Anonymous said...

Max I remember when my Daddy died, it took me forever and after and a day. God love him, he loved Russell Stover Assorted Creams better than anything anybody could give him all year round. After he died, I'd walk into a grocery/pharmacy and see those damn things boxed up front and center and, more times than not, I'd have to turn around and walk back to my car. Shook UP at the sight of those damn cream centered chocolates. I still get shook at the same sight, but can at least pull a buggy and get on with my grocery list. We love you Max.

Damn, the O'Jays can flat handle it, can't they? As can Darlene Love singing her same 30-years-long song, in the 30-years-long same place, on the 30-years-long same show, she sure does place second:

Max, happy new year.

maven said...

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year, Max, from another (53yrold) orphan. It is so hard, but it will get better. You are smashing. Carry on.

Young Fogey said...

Good to see you back on teh Intarwebz.

As is so often the case, there's not much I can add, other than, you're in our thoughts and prayers.

Cro Magnon said...

When I was a student, I rather stupidly did a Summer job with a Removals Company. One of the people we moved house for was John Cooper; it was fascinating handling all his memorabilia. We moved him from London down to the South Coast.

Anonymous said...

Happy new year Dusty.
Please give your self as much time as you need.

That was a great day wandering about in Chelsea.

It was great to meet you and your friends

Much love, Ash & Family

M.Lane said...

Of all your posts this is the best, certainly my favorite. Nine years ago I was where you are now and felt about the same. It gets better. Saying a prayer for you.


Anonymous said...

Had a dream that you had gone into the accessories business- WorldWide Wrist Junk Distributors- WWJD. After several days of working on prototypes, you and LFG had produced one, with stripey stone beads- and then you headed off to Rio for Carnival- a very realistic dream, I am sure.

Kathie Truitt said...

I just love you. Only YOU can make an article funny, yet sad and poignant at the same time. I'm so sorry about your mother. She had to have been proud of the man you'd become.