"the" Mrs. Astor

Monday, July 20, 2009

what a weekend... On Friday we celebrated our anniversary with all our friends at Twist, on Saturday we toasted our little boy/bartender, Tommy, for his birthday, and last night we went for a quiet drink at Twist with Susie in the bungalow and stumbled into a sort of club nirvana, with Twist owners Richard and Joel, Henrietta, and a colorful assortment of town bartenders, managers, doormen, and go-go boys. At one point, we looked at each other and just sighed; we had reached club nirvana.

Once again I got a raised eyebrow last night when I answered the question, "How have you been?" with "Just dandy." The word, "dandy", doesn't seem to be used or understood much anymore, so I present a test to detect whether you, or someone you love, is a closet Dandy.

) You live within 10 miles of:

a) London (+10)
b) Paris (+8)
c) New York (+5)
d) Major metropolitan city (+1)
e) Anywhere else (0)

2) Your age is:

a) 18-25 (0)
b) 25-30 (+1)
c) 30-45 (+5)
d) 45-70 (+1)
e) 70-up (0)

3) Your relationship status is:

a) Single (+10)
b) Married (0)

4) When it comes to physical appearance, you are:

a) Tall, dark and handsome (+5)
b) Tall, dark or handsome (+2)
c) Rather average (0)
d) Rather unappealing (-3)

5) In regards to your physique:

a) Your waist is smaller than your inseam (+5)
b) Your waist is the same as your inseam (0)
c) Your waist is larger than your inseam (-2)

6) Your facial hair preference is:

a) Clean shaven (+3)
b) Mustache or goatee, over 40 (+1)
c) Mustache or goatee, under 40 (-3)
d) Clean shaven with sideburns (-5)

7) Your source of income:

a) Independently wealthy (+10)
b) Credit (+7)*
c) Self-employed (+5)
d) Work in office (-5)

* Must flee to France when credit is exhausted

8.) For college, you attended:

a) Oxford (+10)
b) Princeton (+5)
c) Anywhere else (0)

9) When it comes to your name and ancestry:

a) You’re a commoner, and like Noel Coward, “related to no one but myself.” (+3)
b) You have a title, such as lord or duke (+2)
c) You have an assumed title, such as lord or duke (-5)

10) Your home is:

a) A cloistral male sanctuary for you alone (+8)
b) Cohabited by a fellow dandy (+2)
c) Cohabited by a female spouse/lover (0)
d) Cohabited by a wife and kids (-5)
e) Cohabited by roommates (-6)
f) Cohabited by parents* (-7)

* At ancestral family estate (+5)

11) Your mode of travel around town is primarily:

a) Driver/taxi (+8)
b) Well aged luxury sedan/sports car (+3)
c) Public transportation (train, subway) (0)
d) Economy car (-3)
e) Highwheel bicycle (-5)

12) Your preferred form of tobacco is:

a) Cigarette in holder* (+5)
b) Cigarette (+4)
c) Cigar (+3)
d) Pipe (+1)
e) Quit smoking (0)
f) Never smoked (-2)

* Must be 40 or older

13) Your preferred drink is:

a) Claret (+3)
b) Champagne (+2)
c) Scotch/cognac (+1)
c) Martini (0)
d) Homemade absinthe (-3)

14) Your command of the French language is:

a) Fluent (+5)
b) Reading knowledge (+2)
c) You know “cravatte” means “cravat” (-2)

15) Your musical tastes are primarily:

a) Classical (+5)
b) Jazz and vocalists (+3)
c) Anything else (-3)

16) Your walls are decorated primarily with:

a) Images of masculine panache, such as hunting, equestrian or sartorial prints (+5)
b) Classic art (+2)
c) Modern art (0)
d) Plaster ducks (-3)

17) You have cultivated a collection of useless objects of beauty*, such as antique snuffboxes or Sevres porcelain:

a) Yes (+5)
b) No (0)

* Excluding books, pipes, etc., which serve a utilitarian purpose.

18) For a pet, you’d prefer:

a) Fussed about dog with an endearing name like KiKi (+3)
b) Cat (+1)
c) Jewel-encrusted tortoise (-2)

19) When it comes to sport, you prefer:

a) Fencing, boxing (+5)
b) Golf (+3)
c) Tennis, etc. (+1)
d) You’re like Cecil in “A Room with a View” (0)

20) You possess the following skills (+2 for each):

a) Horsemanship
b) Piano
c) Dancing
d) Flying
e) Painting/sculpture

21) Your suits, jackets and trousers are primarily:

a) Saks (+10)
b) Off the rack but tailored (+ 2)
c) Off the rack, not tailored (0)
d) Vintage (-5)

22) You own a set of white tie and tails:

a) Yes (+5) *
b) No (0)

* Not to be used for the purpose of professional ballroom dancing or orchestra conducting.

23) When it comes to velvet, you have:

a) A smoking jacket (+3)
b) One jacket or waistcoat (+1)
c) Nothing velvet (0)
d) A velvet suit in emerald (-2)
e) Multiple items in velvet (-3)

24) When it comes to hats, you wear a:

a) Homburg/fedora, etc., when it’s under 40 degrees (+3)
b) Homburg/fedora, etc. when above 40 (-2)
c) Top hat during daylight hours, outside of Ascot (-5)
d) A lampshade (-10)

25) A stranger has mocked you because of your dress:

a) At least once in your life (+3)
b) On a daily basis (-5)

26) You would most like others to consider your appearance:

a) Rakishly elegant (+5)
b) Well dressed (+3)
c) Fashionable (0)
d) Unique (-1)
e) Anachronistic (-2)

27) You prefer to dress in:

a) Blue, like Brummell (+4)
b) Gray, like Grant and Astaire (+3)
c) Checks and plaids, like the Duke of Windsor (+2)
d) Bright colors, like Disraeli and Gatsby (+1)
e) Black, like Cher (-3)

28) When discussing clothes with non-dandies, they look you over and:

a) Ask for advice (+5)
b) Give you advice (-5)

29) You would most like to have the wardrobe of:
a) The Duke of Windsor (+5)
b) Tom Wolfe (+1)
c) Fonzworth Bentley (0)
d) Oscar Wilde (-2)
e) Michael Jackson(-5)

30) When it comes to conversation in society, your preferred form of persiflage is:

a) To speak light of the serious and serious of the light (+5)
b) To talk to every woman as if you loved her and every man as if he bored you (+3)
c) To discuss art and literature (+2)
d) To rail against consumerism, materialism and the vulgarity of the masses (-3)

31) On online forums, you’re considered:

a) A caustic wit (+8)
b) A gentleman and scholar (+1)
c) Hardly noticeable (0)
d) An odd bird (-10)

32) You have published on the subject of dandyism:

a) Yes, in book form (+9)
b) Yes, in a magazine/newspaper (+6)
c) Yes, on the Web (+3)
d) Yes, at my diary (+10)
e) No (0)

33) You have been the subject of a piece of writing on dandyism:

a) Yes (+10)
b) No (0)

34) Somewhere, in print or on the Web, is a clever quote attributed to you:

a) Yes (+5)
b) No (0)

35) The real-life man you most admire is:

a) George Brummell (+5)
b) Fred Astair (+3)
c) Andre 3000 (0)
d) Robert de Montesquiou (-3)

36) Not that you care what others think, but still you would least like to be thought of as:

a) Common (+3)
b) A closet sentimentalist (+1)
c) Cold and aloof (0)
d) Vain (-2)

37) Not that you care what others think, but you would most like to be thought of as:

a) A well dressed philosopher of life (+5)
b) A dapper man about town (+2)
c) An artist (+1)
d) A reclusive aesthete (0)
e) A rebel against conformity (-5)

38) Of the statements below, choose the one you most agree with:

a) “Dandyism is the result of an artistic temperament working upon a fine body within the wide limits of fashion.” (+5)
b) “Every dandy dares, but he stops at the intersection between originality and eccentricity.” (+3)
c) “Beaux, lions or dandies… all share the same characteristic of opposition and revolt.” (-1)
d) “Dandies, being perfumed shamans, reside within the twilight realm that exists betwixt the worlds of the Animate and the Inanimate. Because of this, Dandies identify strongly with plants.” (-5)

Your score:

240 (perfect score): You are the ideal of modern dandyism
168-239: Faithful myrmidon
167-under: Affected provincial


At 5:42 PM, Blogger egrow said...

I have a 28" waist and a 33" inseam. I also listen to opera and collect butterflies. I win.

At 6:29 PM, Blogger "the" Mrs. Astor said...

Ed, I knew you won before I even posted it. I've always found you to be dandy.

At 10:21 PM, Blogger Black and Tan Mark said...

Mrs. Astor,
I think the young Master Grow spoke too soon; my WxI is 29x30; I have a fetish for all things public radio, and if you offer me the Brandenburg concertos, I'm yours;
my collections include curious antique telephones. I do integral calculus while having my teeth cleaned. There just may be other dandies out there too :)

At 1:59 AM, Blogger egrow said...

Black and Tan-

A 29" waist? My goodness...do you have to wheel your baroquely obese body around on a jazzy?

Empress Elizabeth always advocated eating sand to keep a svelte figure. Maybe you should try it.

Loves and kisses!

At 2:48 AM, Blogger Connie Chung said...

Hey, you forgot about my Birthday last week July 13th....i want my mafa cake you have been promising me for the past 3 years LOL. You are forgiving.

At 8:36 AM, Blogger "the" Mrs. Astor said...

Empress "Sisi" Elizabeth also survived on the juice of strained meat.

And, Connie, perhaps no one would have forgotten your birthday if you haven't been in hiding. Were you sold to a harem again?

At 11:57 AM, Blogger Connie Chung said...

You're right, I was hiding the whole weekend....i was in a bad mood and since I moved to Miami, I haven't had a good birthday, so i simply just stopped celebrating them.


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