Habitual readers of this, our electronic journal, may recall the varied tribulations faced by a traveling gentleman: the wrinkling of the trousers, the absence of washroom attendants, the recklessness of the baggage handler, etc. But none of these is so irksome as the relentless procession of cock-eyed glances from one’s fellow travelers. I, for one, find the image of a young man, clad in three-piece suit and pork-pie hat, carrying what is most obviously a stringed instrument, to be rather self-explanatory. Clearly, this young man has chosen the noble profession of entertainer and is most probably trekking somewhere to entertain. Apparently such deductive powers elude my fellow airport patrons.
As always, I greeted the first of these crooked glances with a tip of the cap and a smile. But the familiar gentlemanly emotion of indignation soon soiled my innards and I quickly tired of the incessant oglers I met at every turn. Thus, I’m ashamed to report, when a middle aged fellow wearing, of all things, matching denim pants, shirt, and baseball cap, (the so-called Canadian Tuxedo) set to interrogating me with, “What’s with the get-up? Are you some kind of musician?” I promptly ignored his question and delivered one of my own: “And you, sir, I suppose, are some kind of yeoman?”
His denim could not hide his bewilderment! But sadly he offered no sign of offense, and he carted himself and his similarly clad family to gate D8 for departure. I later concluded that “tenant farmer” might well have made for a more biting insult. Still, I accepted victory via forfeit in this battle of wits.
I boarded my flight soon after and was once again disappointed but not shocked to learn that this particular aircraft, like so many of its brethren, lacked a hat rack! So, rather than submit my new (and not inexpensive!) man-bonnet to the rigors of the overhead compartment, I was compelled to pass the entirety of the journey with my pork-pie on my lap. Such indignity may seem trivial until one considers that a gentleman who spends the whole of a three-hour flight with a hat on his lap appears very much as if he is attempting to conceal either a pair of soggy trousers or an irrepressibly swollen man-item.
And friends, I very well may have been guilty of the latter. For soon after take-off, I was to be found quite asleep and well in the midst of a rather elaborate dream-world of luscious gentlewomen, many of whom were clad in flowing denim.
S. Andy Bean