The Frogmarch

"I've got to pull up my stakes and roll, man." --Jean-Jacques Libris de Kerouac

Saturday, December 02, 2006

Don't Forget Your Scarf, Kids!

I don't think I even owned a scarf before I moved to Pittsburgh to go to college. Sure, North Carolina winters occasionally got cold, and we had snow once or twice a year, but a scarf was just one more thing to lose, and was always coming out of your jacket and getting snagged on branches, so I did without.

But the French...boy, do they love some scarves. The minute the temperature drops below 65, two out of three people on the street are wearing them. I'm serious--I've seen people waring scarves over short-sleeve t-shirts. The affluent ladies wear fancy Hermes numbers, men in suits have cashmere scarves color-matched to their pocket squares, sporty types have their Olympique Lyonnais scarves, and the hip college kids rock black-and-white kaffiyehs, like Bob Dylan on the cover of Blonde on Blonde [pic].

I have a cashmere-blend scarf that one of V.'s uncles gave me for Christmas some years ago, which is warm enough but won't really cut it fashion-wise. So I'm keeping my eyes open for a kaffiyeh source here in town. I'm sure one of the shops in the Arab neighborhoods could point me in the right direction...but I'm wary of looking like a poseur (Even though deep in my heart I know that's all I am). I'm also wary because wearing a kaffiyeh in a certain way is a political statement of solidarity with the Palestinians (think Arafat rather than Dylan); not that I'm anti-Palestine in general, but I'd just as soon stay out of that mess.

But all of this background is really just an excuse to run this picture [pic #2]. Go ahead and click on it so you can clearly see this guy, who is chilling perhaps as much as any individual not named Isaac Hayes has ever chilled. Note the carefully arranged scarf, the bike leaning with studied casualness, the faithful dog patiently waiting, the fresh copy of Le Monde...and, oh yeah, the fifteenth-century Chateau Epoisses he's living in. This was around eleven on a Monday morning. Man oh man, the rich are different from you and me.

Unless you've got a tennis court just inside your battlements, right next to the stables [pic 3]. These pics are from our Vezelay trip, which I swear I'll get to posting's just that I took a billion pictures and Boog is bugging me to get off the computer so we can go do something before Mama wakes up and spoils our fun.


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