Friday, October 21, 2016

Correspondence: Dressing up and down

Dolly Sisters 1923
Edited by Moristotle

The 1920s heralded an explosion of sexual freedom, female emancipation and decadent glamour – with clothes to match: “Fops and flappers: wild fashions of the 1920s – in pictures” [Guardian, October 18].
    [See more photos.]

Amanda Terkel says she talked to a bunch of people who bravely admitted they voted for Ralph Nader in 2000. “Many of them have been doing penance ever since – by working in Democratic Party politics, believe it or not. They are also very worried that third-party voters this cycle are going to repeat their mistake.” “Ralph Nader Supporters Warn Third-Party Voters: Don’t Make The Same Mistake!” [Huffington Post, October 6]. Excerpt:
Chris Savage had had enough of Bill Clinton and his shenanigans by the time the 2000 election rolled around, and he wasn’t thrilled about putting his vice president, Al Gore, back in the White House for another four years. But as a Democrat, there was no way the 36-year-old Michigan resident was going to vote for George W. Bush either.
    Then, he found Green Party candidate Ralph Nader....
    But this cycle, Savage isn’t even considering voting third party. He’s now an outspoken Hillary Clinton supporter and literally works for the establishment as Democratic Party chair of Washtenaw County in Michigan.
    And he wants to make sure that disaffected voters know exactly what they’re doing in this election before they go pull the lever for a third-party candidate like Jill Stein of the Green Party or Gary Johnson of the Libertarian Party.
    [read more]

Kirchweih [church worship] is an important fall festival for the Bavarian Catholic Church and families, where everyone dresses in regional costumes – Lederhosen for men (leather pants) and dirndls for women (tightly pulled-in dresses). One attends church, has a lunch of roasted goose and red beets, drinks a lot of beer, and swings on long polished boards tied to barn ceilings where bales of hay are stored as feed for milk cows in the winter. It is a game of chicken, to see how long young couples can stay on the board which is powered by two strong young men standing at each end. “Kirchweih am Samerberg [church worship festival in Samerberg]” [Mediathek Video, October 16].
    [Watch short video.]


English is the world’s international language . It is often used to explain things to tourists coming in from other countries. But while English is well known, it’s not always well written, resulting in some truly, although unintentional, comic signs. Here are some of my all-time favorite broken English signs:
In a Tokyo Hotel: Is forbidden to steal hotel towels please. If you are not person to do such thing is please not to read this.

In a Bucharest hotel lobby: The lift is being fixed for the next day. During that time we regret that you will be unbearable.

In a Leipzig elevator: Do not enter the lift backwards, and only when lit up.

In a Belgrade hotel elevator: To move the cabin, push button for wishing floor. If the cabin should enter more persons, each one should press a number of wishing floor. Driving is then going alphabetically by national order.

In a Paris hotel elevator: Please leave your values at the front desk.

[The correspondent who sent me the following story couldn’t say for sure that it actually happened, or that the person who signed the note in the story was really the person named. But we can enjoy the thought that it may be literally true, just the way it happened]:
Late one night in the 1960s, an older African American woman was standing on the side of an Alabama highway trying to endure a lashing rainstorm. Her car had broken down and she desperately needed a ride. Soaking wet, she decided to flag down the next car.
    A young white man stopped to help her, something generally unheard of in those conflict-filled times (and perhaps still today). The man took her to safety, helped her get assistance and put her into a taxicab. She seemed to be in a big hurry, but she thanked him and wrote down his address.
    Seven days later there was a knock on the young man’s door. To his surprise, a giant, console color TV was being delivered to his home. A note was attached, which read:

Thank you so much for assisting me on the highway the other night. The rain drenched not only my clothes, but also my spirits. Then you came along. Because of you, I was able to make it to my dying husband’s bedside just before he passed away.
    God bless you for helping me and unselfishly serving others.
                        Sincerely,
                        Mrs. Nat King Cole
Grateful for correspondence, Moristotle

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