Monday, October 24, 2005

Addendum to Return to the Chapeau


Cherchie LaBlogue mentions me in her latest post, so it seems only fitting that I make mention of her mention, because endlessly circular referencing amuses me, although it is not for everyone. I am not certain I intended to make a "project" of hats -- I have forty-some amateur, supremely trivial, and entirely unremunerative projects on my desk at the moment, none of them remotely nearing completion -- but it does seem that, in my random pilfering of images from the web, I have collected more pictures of hats -- and mostly ladies' hats, at that -- than sheer chance would seem to dictate. I was entirely unaware of this mild process of cathexis; at least not consciously, as Dr. F. would say, if I were bothering to listen. It now strikes me that many of my old pencil sketches, pen and ink drawings, and pastels, from my days trying to be a misunderstood artist (I succeeded brilliantly at being misunderstood) had hats in them. Something about the sideways-figure-8, Moebius strip linear swirls of the hat made me feel like an orchestral conductor when I was drawing them. Or something. But I'm not a hat person, nor do I know any hat people. The mystery deepens, as all questions with very little point must when one concentrates one's full psychic energies upon them.

I admit to having in recent days having deliberately started to collect hat images as I stumble upon them. But that this might develop into a project gives me pause. Was not the Panama Canal a project? Was not the manned flight to the moon a project? Was not the debut of Le Sacre du Printemps a project? I begin to feel intimidated. I begin to feel tired. I begin to wonder if I shouldn't be getting overtime. I begin to wonder how much coffee is in the house.

Well, we shall see. (I always say that, and it always turns out to be true.) In the meantime, I offer to Cherchie the above, which are both vital accessories to the hat throughout its history; and traditional means of self-defense, and, occasionally, unprovoked assault. I am taking care to allude to them very, very casually; there can be no question of their bullying their way into my time as another project. They also have psychoanalytic implications against which it is best to close the window shade and quickly light a lamp or two.

BTW, camellias are precisely Billie Holiday. There were other forties celebrities who seem to have been associated briefly with them -- one thinks of Linda Darnell and Dorthothy Lamour -- but they no longer define that look in the universal mind. No one has brought it off since then, at least to my knowledge. Can Cherchie? We shall see.

Coming soon: a silly poem, some graphics, and a few announcements to the world community.

(NOTE: Diderot may have gotten into this hat business before I did, but I pay little attention to his doings since our falling-out. It seems he took offense when I was reading his MS for The Nun, which I found quite amusing, but then I made the evident error of remarking, "Denis, where do you come up with this crap?" He tells the story differently, but he is notoriously unreliable. French, too.)