March 26, 2007

natty vs. ratty

q. shenaynay

Herewith a quote from a zingy article entitled Furl the Freak Flag, Already by Lars Walker, from the March issue of The American Spectator:

Many are the duties a responsible culture (if there were one around) would lay upon us, its elders. We'd be expected to keep the fires of reason and tradition burning in the home and the public square. We'd be expected to act as a damper on the political and social passions of our youngers, counseling against complacent pacifism on the one hand and obnoxious aggression on the other. We'd be expected to provide a little free babysitting for the grandchildren when the kids needed a weekend in Tahoe or St. Thomas.

But no duty of elders, it seems to me, is more vital to the common weal on a day-to-day basis than that of simply dressing decently. An old man in a neat suit (preferably with a hat. Extra points for a cane) is a walking civic improvement. By contrast, an old coot* in baggy shorts and a Budweiser tee-shirt is a sight from which small children should be shielded. By force of law if necessary.

Quite so, Mr. Walker!

*Small word change because I don't have particularly warm feelings for the word Walker used here, which, even though it may not necessarily seem a bad word in such a coarse, non-genteel age as ours, I must nevertheless warn you that if you use it in front of my 94 year old Southern lady grandmother or my impressionable and parrotish seven year old son, then yes, it is in fact a bad word, because I said so, and I would prefer you used a word such as "coot" if it's all the same to you. So, apologies to Mr. Walker, but hey, it's my blog, and at least I'm confessing my tendency toward revisionistic editorial aggression right up front.

Oh, and you can read the full article here.


Nomos said...

I dunno. Old men in baggy shorts and beer-brand t-shirts are like modern art. It's not pretty to look and all out of sorts, but you better like it, dadgum it, or you don't have any taste. Myself, I sort of see them as mobile monuments of what not to do with my life...

Blogger profile name said...

Lynn, I really love this. I have to tell you...

One of Granddad's prized possessions was his "Old Fart" baseball cap (along with his aerosol can of bulls#@t repellent). One of us has a priceless photo of him in it; I sure wish I knew what happened to that picture!