When we bought our current house three years ago, we inherited the mail order subscriptions of the previous owners. And try as we might to stop the monthly flow of clothes catalogues, we are still regularly inundated with bizarre fashion magazines.
None, however, reached the heights of the latest arrival.
Ladies and Gentlemen, I bring you THE fashion statement of Fall 2012:
And when you’ve finished laughing, check out the prices — these guys are serious! The lederhosen alone cost 250 euros!
And for the ladies … I’m sorry to say that I’ve already thrown out the issue with the Bavarian hunting smock with felt cap and falcon feathers, but this is still pretty … amaaaazing:
Verse-moi encore du Ricard, il fait beau, fin d’histoire !
There’s no Internet connection in the rental villa, so I’m also looking forward to reading a lot, with a tall glass of chilled wine and the sound of cicadas in the pines.
I borrowed some books from our local library this week, for only the second time in 18 months. We go almost every week, but I usually focus on getting stuff for the kids and making sure they’re not trashing the comic book section. Our visits end with me cursing impatiently as I try to finish all the jigsaw puzzles the little kids have emptied out — Those 36-piece ones are a bitch!
This last visit, I managed to sneak away for a couple of minutes to find some books for myself. I only got to Amis, Adiga, Barry and Chabon before the Samster started climbing up my leg. I shook him off, hid round the other side of the bookcase and grabbed a Roddy Doyle. At this rate I might make it halfway through the alphabet by … 2014.
Translating agricultural development articles doesn’t often make me break out into a smile, so I was particularly pleased to discover this evening that the Chief Executive of the Seychelles Agricultural Agency goes by the wonderful name of Antoine Marie Moustache. It’s the mother lode of tease.
And then there’s his job: with a land mass of only 455 square miles spread over 115 tiny islands and coral outcrops, the title seems to rival that of Swiss Admiral*.
Determined to find more about Mr Moustache, I tracked down his M.Phil thesis at another of my old stomping grounds, the University of the West Indies: Fertilizer use in Cabbage with Special Reference to Urea-N.
– Irie! U-Ria! Why y’hafta pee on de cabbage dem?
– Yeah man, me drink me root juice
an’ forget de damn waterin’ can an’ ting.
Now that the brouhaha is beginning to fade, maybe we can take stock of the absurdity of the latest product launch by Apple. For those unable to attend the event in person, there were live blogs galore and even a blow-by-blow retelling of what was happening inside by vloggers refused entry.
The irony is delicious: the latest most sophisticated information system being explained in Chinese whispers.
And of course, the story ends in wildly differing versions, from fan- to craptastic.
The only consensus was the high snigger factor of the name — altho’ after the 7th iTampon tweet, the joke was pretty much milked dry.
As one of the many who cannot afford an iPhone, iBook, iTouch or iPad, it seems ridiculous that so much energy is spent in discussing a new gadget. It’s not jealousy on my part, understand; owning an iPad belongs in that post-lottery-win fantasy, where I’m floating on my white leather chaise longue in an infinity pool in St Barts (hey, it’s MY fantasy). Apple has succeeded in generating so much hype about its products that it barely needs to do any promotion itself — we do it ourselves. Nice one, Steve.
And why do we get so excited by a new toy? Because of the need to be “in” with the in-crowd (baaa-aaa), to look down on the have-nots (p-tooo).
It reminds me of a quote about photographers:
Amateurs are concerned about products;
Professionals are concerned about price;
Masters are concerned about light.
It is the amateur’s doomed belief that if he just had the latest product, regularly, he would be able to rank as a pro. The point is that having a better camera is no substitute for practice and talent. Doisneau or Capa wouldn’t have taken better pictures with this year’s latest camera.
Instead of placing our faith externally in an object, we should spend more time investing on the internal.
(… but if I do win the lottery, then I’ll be wearing this Leica necklace in my fantasy …)