by admin on December 9, 2011

esme en rouge

well, this weekend mr.noir wanted esme to come to big city (that’s san francisco in these parts) to accompany him to an art deco show.  cleverly, he lured esme to the show by promising her dinner at the zuni cafe to follow.  esme and mr. noir have been dining at the zuni cafe ever since they met—over 25 years ago.  they have fond memories of impromptu early dinners (sans child) of hamburgers and red wine.  a more formal dinner would consist of cesar salad and roast chicken.  occasionally esme would indulge in an espresso granita and be up all night.  the great thing about the zuni is that you can still order the same meals, and they are still delicious.  and the people-watching, if anything, is better.

the art deco show (mostly furniture) also had things to recommend it.  to wit:  vintage clothing and jewelry.  esme saw swimsuits from the ’50’s, a gold leather jacket from the ’40’s (i think), a little chinese hostess outfit from sometime in the distant past, bakelite jewelry, and all sorts of amazing vintage furs.  too bad esme has sworn off fur!

vintage leather

but the most compelling aspect of the trip was the conversation we had on the way home.  it started when esme noted that, despite her 58 years, men were noticing her as she walked around the deco show, and as she made a trip to the bathroom at the zuni (of course esme always notices when people notice her!).  she was wearing her black ivan grundahl trousers (newly acquired on sale), gray sweater, and over-sized red animale coat.

mr. noir began to meditate on the question of why women think men notice clothes.  and if men don’t notice women’s clothes, why women spend so much time, money and energy on them–indeed!  mr. noir has long had a line which sums up his theory:  he says that men notice “the stuffing”, not the packaging.  however, if this be true, esme can only wonder why she attracts male attention in some outfits and not at all in others.

mr. noir backed up and explained that there was an inherent contradiction in the situation:  while men’s eyes are riveted by clothing that reveals the most (and the best) stuffing, such outfits can also be utterly tasteless and tacky.

aha!  maybe this explains why mr. noir tends to disapprove of certain garments on esme which esme just knows he’d stare at on another woman!  on the other hand, he averred that some women are inherently “lookable” even in non-revealing outfits.  mr. noir is not expansive with compliments, but he did admit that he would put esme into the “lookable” category.  he thought this explained the attention she received in the red coat. phew!!

and yet, esme can’t help thinking that a woman’s get-up has something to do with being lookable.  esme just knows that she attracts more attention when she has recently had her hair cut and is wearing lip-stick.  and surely the red coat grabs the eye!

esme would love to have your opinions on this matter.  and don’t be surprised if this post changes a bit later in the day—esme has not yet had a chance to have it vetted by the indomitable mr. noir!





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