Tuesday, February 1, 2011


The other day I went past the shop where I bought my tuxedo.  We go on a number of cruises and it's nice to be able to wear the uniform on the formal nights that are regularly held.  I'd put the moment off long enough and frankly the investment wasn't that much. 

When it came time to pay, the lady in charge reminded me that there were other items that had to go along with the jacket and trousers.  She showed me several formal shirts, shoes, and of course bowties and cummerbunds.  I was reaching for a tie/cummerbund set when I heard my father's voice reminding me: "Trevor, only waiters wear made-up bow ties!"  He had a bit of a thing about it.

Now he was a fairly simple fellow but he'd spent a lot of his early life as a junior officer on board ships that ferried people out to various parts of the Empire, and dress codes were rigid.  Hence his obsession with bow ties.

As a sop to his morality I purchased, along with the aforementioned set, a real bow tie, and later on I tried to tie it.  I had been quite proficient at the art in my late teens when dinner dances were all the rage, but now it seems the skill had left me.  I struggled with the wretched thing for about twenty minutes as it twisted and turned on me, before finally flinging it into the recesses of the garment bag.

We are about to take off on another cruise and once again as I dress for the first formal night I will look at the beastly black double ended thing and reject it.  I shall stubbornly hook up the bane of my father's life and head out the door.  Once again I know the feeling of guilt will only last until the first sip of pre-dinner cocktail has passed my lips.  And I have to say that no-one has ever called me over to order food or complain about the olive in their Martini!

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