Purveyor of Bollocks to the Crowned Heads of Europe
Tuesday, 10 June 2014
Growing old gracefully
H.I.'s latest booties - Silver Linen, bought online the other day. A beguiling mixture between glitzy and sensible, don't you think?
Our contents insurance is coming up for renewal, and every year the premium nudges up very slightly. Everything nudges up these days, but not so steeply as the maximum speeding fine that is just about to be imposed on motorists by magistrates - soon, you could be liable for a fine of £10,000 for going over 70 MPH on a British motorway.
If - Chris forbid - we did have a catastrophic fire in our compact but adorable city apartment, I am not sure the maximum payout would cover H.I.'s wardrobe on a new-for-old basis. That's the trouble with fashion - you have to wait so long for styles to come around again so you can take all those Armani shoulder-pads out of the cupboard and put them on in public - or so I am told. It hardly seems any time at all since J.R. got shot in Dallas, and my Armani suit from that period is still acceptable - or so I think.
There is a 70 year-old woman here in Bath who is getting a lot of attention at the moment, because she dresses like a 1960s art student, with a fierce hair-style to match. You will catch a glimpse of her if you visit the forthcoming BP Portrait exhibition in London, and if you also watch a film about 'older women' shortly to be shown somewhere.
Everyone says how marvellous she looks, but this is only because she cuts a strikingly jarring figure on the pavement - it is all a bit too obvious for me. She is the embodiment of the 'older model', but it is catwalk stuff, and really should have not much to do with ordinary fashion - the sort which is slightly frightening to the beige-wearing retired folk who are still alive.
I have never been a slave to fashion, but I have always known the importance of understanding what your clothes say about you to others. For instance, it is fine to have a pair of trousers which finish above the ankle - like the above - if you are a woman, but it is absolutely forbidden for men to wear them in my rule-book. I put this attitude down to being forced to wear my brother's cast-offs when at school.
I am still looking for that hat, and have been since I reached the age where I thought - rightly or wrongly - I could get away with it. I thought I could get away with wearing a deer-stalker (real name: fore-and-aft) aged 14 at school too, but I soon learnt that you cannot get away with that at any age these days.
Thinking you can 'get away' with something is - in reality - just reaching the age when your skin has become so thickened that you don't care what anyone thinks any longer, and that is a very sad state of affairs.
I live in dread of losing the last vestiges of my remaining inhibitions. If you see me wearing shorts in town, I will probably be handcuffed to a policeman.