Good afternoon. It is I Gigi the parti poodle here on my usual Thursday to introduce chapter ten of my story Corn Maze. Today the Maltese and I…
My name is Tucker, and I am a Maltese.
…know that many of you out there are getting ready to head back to school. And this week we want to talk about school clothes. Granted, an odd subject for our blog but one we’d like to discuss just the same.
Tell them about the fibers. Tell them about the fibers…
Yes, yes. Well, because our novelist studied drama as one of her majors, she was required to take costume classes. What they do or at least did teach was fabrics and yarns are usually better quality and often more comfortable if they are natural as opposed to synthetic.
I like natural things. I like them very, very much.
Yes. Well, the best fibers to wear are primarily natural ones. These include:
Alpaca, Angora, Bamboo, Camel Hair, Cashmere, Cotton, Hemp, Lamb’s Wool, Linen, Llama, Mohair, and Silk
Processed products include:
Acrylic, Microfiber, Nylon, Polyester, Polypropylene, PVC, and Spandex
Semi-synthetic fibers include:
Acetate, Artificial Silk, Rayon (Viscose) and Tencel
The clothing brand does not matter as much as the quality of the fiber. In other words, don’t buy the label, buy the quality of fiber instead. And although sometimes it is necessary to use synthetic fibers for work clothes, exercising, sports, etc., generally it is better and more comfortable to wear natural fibers. Also, the expertise of the design and the skill of the seamstress or seamster is important as well. Here is a wonderful article by Diane Von Furstenberg on the subject. Also, we’d just like to add that we are not big fans of fast fashion.
No, we are not fans of fast food or fast fashion.
Fast fashion is cheaply made, low quality clothing that is not designed to last, priced low to lure you in, and is often found in stores such as Forever21, H&M, Hot Topic, Old Navy, Target, Topshop, Uniqlo, Urban Outfitters, Walmart, and Zara among others. We know the prices are tempting but we would humbly suggest primarily purchasing quality natural fiber clothes at reasonable sale prices. And to be picky, stay within your budget, get what you really like and not buy something because of a label. You should be happy with your clothes, and they should last you a lot longer than one season.
I am picky. I am very, very picky.
If you would like to read more about this topic, we suggest the book Overdressed: The Shockingly High Cost of Cheap Fashion by Elizabeth L. Cline. And with that, here is Chapter Ten of Corn Maze. Nasoloditisya!
Gigi the parti poodle
Harley entered the Tulip Valley Café and found Valerie studying at her usual table. He observed the way the emerald-green shaded light shone on her hair. Pat hurried to the hostess station and said, “Hello, Harley. Your usual again today?”
“Uh…I’m here to see Valerie,” Harley said nervously.
Pat looked over at Valerie’s booth and back at him. “Oh,” she said bemused. “Do you need a menu?”
Harley took off his John Deer baseball hat and fiddled with it in his hands. Pat grabbed a plastic covered menu from the wooden slot affixed to the desk and led Harley to Valerie’s table.
“Looks like you’ve got company,” Pat told Valerie.
“What?” Valerie said and looked up from her studies to find Harley standing beside Pat. “Harley, what are you…?”
“I thought we could have breakfast together.”
Valerie’s eyes widened. “I…yes, of course.”
“I remember when you two used to come in here together and order fountain drinks when you were in high school,” Pat said, a lilt in her voice.
“That was a long time ago,” Valerie said.
“Not that long,” Harley said quietly.
“Care for some coffee, Harley?” Pat asked.
“I’ll get Poppy to bring you some.”
“Thank you kindly.”
“Of course,” she said, setting Harley’s menu in front of him before she left.
“Why did you agree to this corn maze catastrophe?” Valerie asked Harley.
Harley shifted his eyes to his nervous hands. “You know why.”
“Harley…that ship has sailed.”
“That ship never left the harbor.”
“What about Mallory? What’s her opinion?”
“Good morning, Harley,” Poppy said siding up to the table. She turned over Harley’s mug and filled it with a freshly brewed pot of coffee.
“Thank you, Poppy.”
“You are welcome. Are you ready to order?”
“I haven’t gotten a chance to look at the menu.”
“The eggs Benedict is awesome. And the biscuits and gravy are popular.”
“Sounds fantastic, but I think I’ll have a stack of toast with that fresh baked bread you get from the local bakery.”
“White, wheat, rye, or whole grain?”
“Better make it whole grain. I need the nutrition. And a scrambled egg too please.”
“You’ve got it.”
Poppy left and Harley poured cream into his coffee. “Ever since that dinner,” he said quietly as he tore open a packet of raw sugar, “I’ve been thinking maybe this contest isn’t such a bad idea after all.”
“Farley’s trying to ruin your life,” Valerie said.
“Interesting choice of words.”
“Don’t be naïve, Harley.”
“What makes you think I am?”
“You know he’s out to ruin your relationship with Mallory. Win or lose either way he comes out on top.”
“You sure of that, Val?”
Valerie anxiously tapped her fingers on the sides of her coffee cup. “Aren’t you?”
“Do you remember that sterling silver chain you used to wear around your neck? The one with the silver strawberry charm on it?”
“And we came in here one day, sat down in the booth and you suddenly realized you’d lost it.”
“I was very upset about it.”
“And do you remember when we left, I found it lying outside on the sidewalk.”
“Yes, I remember.”
“And the chain had somehow gotten this big knot in it, and I thought you were going to explode because you loved that necklace so much. But you didn’t. You stayed calm. And we came back inside and sat down at the same booth because Pat let us, and you started working the knot out with your little pink polished fingernails. And I sat across from you and watched as you loosened it one loop at a time until finally the knot was gone, and it was the way it was before. That’s what this is, Valerie.”
“What do you mean, Harley?”
“Things are in knots and I’m going to untie them.”
Valerie reached out her hand and touched his for a moment before she pulled away. “Aren’t you concerned you might make bigger knots?”
“What are you going to do if I lose?”
“I didn’t agree to this contest, Harley. But you can be sure if you lose your fiancé will go to bed with my fiancé.”
“And if I win?”
“You won’t win.”
“If I win?”
Valerie took a sip of her coffee and sighed.
“Here’s your toast and scrambled egg, doll,” Poppy said cheerily as she set Harley’s plate in front of him. “Can I get you two anything else?”
“This looks great,” Harley said.
Poppy topped off Harley’s cup. “More for you, Valerie?” she asked.
“No, thank you, Poppy,” Valerie said. “I need to get going.”
“I’ll just leave your check here.”
“Thank you,” Valerie said and reached into her purse.
“You didn’t answer my question, Val,” Harley said snatching the check, pulling out his credit card and handing it to Poppy.
“Thank you,” Poppy said and left to charge his card.
“Wait!” Valerie called after her. She turned to Harley and said, “I don’t want you paying my bill.”
“Fine,” she said and started gathering up her studies. “I don’t have an answer for you, Harley because you’re not going to win.”
Valerie shook head and climbed out of the booth. “You’re going to lose, Harley, and I don’t know what I’m going to do,” she said and left.
You can check out my books Chicane and the five installments in my Musicology book series Musicology: Volume One, Baby!, Musicology: Volume Two, Kid!, Musicology: Volume Three, Twist!, Musicology: Volume Four, Sweetie! and Musicology: The Epiquad on Amazon in Kindle and Paperback editions. You can also check out Musicology’s web site at www.musicologyrocks.com and vote for who you think will win Musicology!!!
STREAM OF THE WEEK: VICTORIA’S SECRET: ANGELS AND DEMONS (2022)- Hulu
After watching this three-part documentary, I know I will never look at Victoria’s Secret the same way again…and I don’t mean that in a good way. This is a fascinating study about a company that started out brilliantly and became more and more corrupt as time went on. The establishment was originally founded by Roy Raymond and his wife Gaye who, in 1977 decided to start a lingerie store that was classy instead of sleezy.
Roy founded his first business at the tender age of 13 which produced wedding invitations. He graduated from Tufts University and received his MBA from Stanford University. He and his wife founded Victoria’s Secret on the idea that it was embarrassing for men to purchase lingerie for their wives at department stores. They decided to create something elegant. Victoria was a tip of the hat to the Victorian era suggesting sophistication and the Secret was the underclothing the women wore at the time. This one-of-a-kind concept garnered success and they opened three stores in San Francisco and a very successful mail order catalogue. We shall call Roy and his wife Gaye angels.
In 1980 along comes Les Wexler who, upon seeing the distinctiveness of the store wanted to acquire it. Raymond said of Wexler, “When I met him, it was as if I’d met the devil.” Sadly, Raymond was right and most unfortunately sold the company to Les Wexler in 1982 for a measly one million dollars. Raymond and Gaye, after having a son and daughter together, divorced in 1990. On August 26, 1993, after suffering serious business failures, Raymond took his own life by jumping off the Golden Gate Bridge. We shall call Les Wexler a demon.
Instead of focusing on male clientele Wexler decided to focus on female clientele. And at first there was “some truth” him doing this. But ultimately Victoria’s Secret’s upper crust was dominated by men as opposed to a balance of a man and woman running it together like it was originally. And Les had an affinity for picking the slimiest excrement at the bottom of the dirtiest garbage can to assist him and enlisted both misogynist psychopath Ed Razek as his chief marketing officer and none other than infamous pedophile Jeffery Epstein to assist him with his financial affairs. We shall call Ed Razek and Jeffery Epstein demons as if that needs to be pointed out.
The documentary goes on to chronicle how the company, with the help of these three fallen angels went from floating on clouds to diving into a netherworld inferno. They engaged in all sorts of wrong from airbrushing its models to appear thinner than they really were, to creating the PINK brand to sexualize underage girls. From being one of the first American clothing companies to send its manufacturing overseas for cheap labor to allowing Epstein to lure and lock an underage girl in his mansion (which he lived in next to Wexler’s) where he and Ghislaine Maxwell repeatedly raped her over a weekend of utter debauchery. After watching this documentary, you may think twice before ever shopping at this and the other L brand establishments again.