Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Rethinking the Velvet Suit

Back when we were counting cigarette holders, the appearance of one would usually usher in a spate. It even became irritating! The same has not been the case with velvet suits. So far we have only had reports of three people wearing velvet suits: Ellen Degeneres, Peter O'Toole, and Charles Schulz. So we have decided to offer a prize to the fifth person who spots someone wearing a velvet suit. If you do your math correctly, you will reckon that we are talking about the eighth velvet suit to hit the "blog." The only rule is, you can't be looking for it. You have to be surprised by it, the way Mark Osborne was when he saw a guy with a cigarette holder at Starbucks. Okay! We're going to hold back until we get five entries, so don't think you'll be able to wait until four more velvet suits are catalogued and jump in for the win. That wouldn't be fair! Send your postcards to VELVET SUIT c/o "Writer" Oxford, MS, 38655. The winner will receive a copy of THE CITY IN HISTORY by Lewis Mumford. It's gigantic and heavy and Arnold Stang is nowhere in the index and I don't know what I was thinking when I bought it. Besides, Jane Jacobs really tore Mumford up in THE DEATH AND LIFE OF GREAT AMERICAN CITIES, in a way that made me feel I had to choose sides. And because I'm lazy and she made me laugh and nod a lot, I'm going to stick with Jane Jacobs. Finally, speaking of Charles Schulz, this new bio has a photo of him as an infant - the exact same photo that used to fascinate my little sister when she was a baby herself. It was in the introduction to a Peanuts collection I had. My sister, who was barely walking or talking, loved that picture more than she liked the colorful cartoons. She would open the book to that page and stumble around demanding that I "Kiss the baby! Kiss the baby!" and she wouldn't be happy until I kissed the photo of Charles Schulz as a baby. I still have that book. She tore the covers off and drew all over it with crayons. Okay, I've crammed a lot in here because I need to work on my new book today. Bye!