Thursday, June 16, 2005

Summer Piety or Hazy Brazen?: The Nature of the Summer Dress.

With spring comes renewal. The landscape silently regains its green texture and we weary stacked urbanites sleepily migrate from our sealed cocoons to vigorously take over the streets. Whether club kids, dog walkers or patio gnomes, we all unite in our mission to stretch our legs and take in some outdoor air. It’s been the cycle of centuries – and one I am happy to see arrive. After endless nights of frozen tundra and fleeting dreams of warmer climes, I without exception take flight before the patio chairs are dusted off in April… and rarely leave until last call in late October. It’s just the way things are. For a marvellous period, my regular employment becomes subservient to a life as patio philosophiser and general man about town.

Until last week, I believed my intentions pure and innocent this year. However, two weeks immersed in the subtle delights of the ‘Concrete Beach’ and environs has reminded me of the grand prize of the season – the glorious Summer Dress. Wholesome yet risqué, this pinnacle of summer fashion combines the assumingly contradictory notions of elegance and temperance. Subsequently, it takes an especially pious-brazen type to model effectively. A big thank you to culturally-isolated Western is in order for providing the sample necessary to judge effectively the three types of enthusiasts:

1. The Traditionalist – This group is interested solely in wearable contentment. Unconcerned with endorsement or sanction, the traditionalist appreciates the supreme comfort and ease that made this the staple of their mother and grandmother’s generation.

2. The Post-Modernist (The Shameless Promoter) – Concerned with the notion that appearance makes reality indistinguishable, this heathen type is akin to the used car salesman of the fashion world - do whatever is necessary to sell your clunker to a sceptical public. While not necessarily a lemon, the unabashed nature of character ensures the compulsory need to add frivolous individualistic bells and whistles, wholly unaware that the summer dress is most effective in its purest form.

3. The Existential Ethicist – This type provides the perfect mix of the retention of authenticity and flare for promotion gleaned exclusively from life’s experiences. Essence precedes existence after all. While acknowledging the elegant simplicity of function, they are also keenly aware of the form. For the betterment of all involved, this type is resigned to their fate and restricts themselves to what is under their own control.

And so you have it, pretentious psychobabble at its best… complete with homage to the summer dress, its purveyors, models and admirers. Thank you for making summer that extra bit special. I salute you.

I’m off to the Black Bull.


Blogger Nick said...

Boy, I think that first link actually succeeded in making my teeth fall out. Good ol' conservative political discourse..."ewww, that's so Lefty!"

Dick, we need to hit a patio sometime soon to discuss matters. Are you around TO at all these days? I'm probably gonna be in town next weekend, if you're around...if not, bring thee to Montreal post-haste.

11:18 AM  
Blogger Rufus said...

So glad to not need shirt-and-tie! I truly do not envy Bay Street men in the summer ....

...on the other hand, all the men in Montreal look good.

5:21 PM  
Blogger Dick said...

Agreed! The life of racing for the GO Train and riding for an hour just to be able to loosen your tie and crack a beer has absolutely no appeal.

P.S. If I'm enthraled with the summer dress in the Toronto context, I couldn't imagine the sensory overload of Montreal!

5:28 PM  
Blogger Rufus said...

Then get thee to Montreal post-haste.

9:11 PM  
Blogger Nick said...

I agree with Rufus here!

5:22 PM  

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