Dandy of the Year: Lapo Elkann

head-shot.jpgHe’s young, good-looking and extremely wealthy. He’s fluent in six languages and the very definition of cosmopolitan, having been born in New York, raised in Brazil, educated in England and France, and now once again living in Gotham. He’s the scion of Italy’s preeminent family (the Agnellis, not the Mafia), and is quintessentially Italian. Style and fashion are in his blood, thanks to his aunt Diane von Furstenberg. He’s linked with sleek cars and even sleeker women. Perennially named to the world’s best-dressed lists, he’s officially a GQ style icon.

But that’s not why Dandyism.net has chosen Lapo Edouard Elkann its first-ever Dandy of the Year.

D.net salutes Elkann because this year he returned from exile. All good dandies must go into exile, either to escape gambling debts or arrest. Brummell and Jimmy Walker did it. Oscar Wilde did it, but too late. The Duke of Windsor did it, but for love. Celebrities and wannabes like Sebastian Horsley don’t go into exile, they merely go to rehab or jail or — worst of all — don’t go away at all.

cadillac-fins.jpgIn 2005, Elkann left his job as Fiat’s head of worldwide brand promotions and retired from the public eye. In 2007 he returned in a carefully choreographed public-relations campaign that nicely coincided with the launch of his latest venture, high-priced Italian sunglasses.

But more impressive is why Elkann went into exile in the first place.

One of Fiat’s two largest shareholders, the paramour of Italian starlet Martina Stella, the handsome face of the revival of the Fiat brand, and the hero of world fashion press, Elkann almost tossed it all away with a near-fatal overdose of cocaine and heroin downed with an alcoholic chaser while partying with Patrizia, a fifty-four year old transsexual hooker, plus two of her business associates, at her apartment in what passes for Turin’s red-light district.

Elkann’s irresponsibility, even if he were desperate for Laposuction, ranks right up there with abdicating the throne for a mannish double divorcé, and dashing your literary career by dallying with rent-boys while you have two smash plays on the boards.

Of course screwing up magnificently doesn’t make a dandy. A dandy must also have elegance and the proper demeanor, and Elkann fits the bill on both counts.

young-lapo.jpgHe looks like a dandy should. The 30-year-old’s personal style is eclectic. One day he will be precisely dressed in a blue double-breasted suit, spread-collar white shirt, solid tie and puffed pocket square, or a navy blazer and stripped pants with red socks and brown shoes. On the next, he’ll wear a bold-check suit with scarf, or he’ll spice up one of the impeccably cut suits he inherited from nonno Gianni Agnelli by wearing sneakers with no socks. For daywear he quirkily favors tuxedo jackets in bold and unlikely checks. He’s commissioned a Mediterranean-blue suit from the prestigious Rome tailoring house of Caraceni, executed to his specifications, accented by grosgrain lapels with the proportions of a 1959 Cadillac’s tailfins and a built-in cummerbund waistband, which he’ll wear with velvet slippers.

And increasingly Elkann’s slim frame — the product of the gym, bicycling and skateboarding — will be clad in something creatively casual that discreetly exposes tufts of chest hair and several chains and pendants, such as a double-breasted tweed jacket with an unbuttoned lime shirt, or an unbuttoned pinstriped royal-blue Oxford shirt, with sleeves rolled up, tucked into a dark blue pair of trousers cinched, a la Astaire, with a rope. On his best days, he pulls off a brilliant combination of the classic and relaxed with such combinations as a linen pinstripe suit paired with a denim shirt, thereby achieving that elusive sprezzatura.

casual-lapo.jpgAs for his lifestyle, Elkann pursues such dandy hobbies as chain smoking and drinking a dozen espressos a day. He’s an accomplished sailor, winning the 2003 Fastnet trans-ocean sailboat race with his older, more responsible brother, aboard Stealth, their ultra-modern yacht. His preferred mode of transportation, when he isn’t forced to drive a Fiat-affiliate Maserati or Alfa Romeo, is a very fast, very big motorcycle.

Elkann is charming and social, though perhaps a bit voluble for a dandy. He exhibited a wry, self-deprecating humor by hanging in his studio a poster for “I Was a Man,” a film about a hermaphrodite that bears the tagline “The Body of a Man, The Feelings of a Woman.”

We especially admire Elkann’s dandyish sense of superiority. Although he made his mark as Fiat’s promotions manager by splashing the Fiat logo on everything from clothing and accessories to comestibles and potables, today he disdains such vulgar display — at least for himself. When it comes to his own clothing and accessories, Elkann says, “No logo, and you don’t advertise for anyone. I don’t believe in imposed luxury. I believe in built luxury. Something you refine with your own taste. Mass luxury is not my luxury.”

Lapo’s luxury makes him a dandy deluxe and has earned him D.net’s acclaim as 2007 Dandy of the Year.

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132 Responses to “Dandy of the Year: Lapo Elkann”

  1. Will Says:

    I was initially disappointed before realizing that you could have chosen Tom Cruise.

  2. ontwins Says:

    Nice article, well written and enjoyable. A google image search provides some dandy pictures of the man of the year…a title I’m certain I finished a close second in.

    Happy New Year everyone.

    Cordially,

    Ontwins

  3. M Says:

    An interesting choice. Not sure I’m altogether fond of the denim shirt and white DB jacket combo, or the DJ with the T-Shirt look. But then who am I to judge… Wait! What am I saying?!

  4. Miguel Antonio Says:

    I like the idea of creating a ‘Dandy of the Year’ article.

  5. G~ Says:

    A Dandy of the year. What an idea; elitist, yet appeals to the common taste
    As for Mr. Elkann: well, he has the attitude, he has the $$, he even has the love of fashion- sort of [He has that playboy "anything I choose to wear is fashion" attitude]…but I ask myself…is he is truly in pursuit of elegance?
    Who were the runners up?

  6. Nick Willard Says:

    Everyone one else, obviously.

  7. G~ Says:

    Too bad it didn’t go up for a vote. It could have been like the “who’s the Dandy” column; it would have been fun. Maybe next year.

  8. HRH The Duke of Windsor Says:

    I am very seriously tempted to end my association with this web site over this announcement.

  9. G~ Says:

    My Heavens…End your association with D.net over a snide and elitist announcement? why I’m surprised you’ve hung on this long?

  10. chatterton Says:

    For sure he doesn’t drink “expressos”!

  11. richard meyer Says:

    I see far better dressed people every day. Brummel said, “If John Bull stops to stare at you, you are not well dressed”.

  12. M Says:

    Vote?

    I don’t think you’re getting this whole dandyism thing. My opinion wasn’t even solicited and I’m on the Junta. What makes you think your’s matters?

  13. M Says:

    Italians usually call it “espresso.” “Expresso,” however, is common in northern France. Both are correct.

  14. G~ Says:

    I didn’t say my opinion mattered…I said it would be fun.

  15. HRH The Duke of Windsor Says:

    I have no problem with snide and elitist pronouncements. I do, however, have a problem with the naming of a man who does not fit the definition of dandy that this web site has outlined.

  16. Miguel Antonio Says:

    I see a problem with the name “Lapo Elkann” as well, as it seems degrading and vulgar. However that is not reason enough to disapprove his selection as ‘Dandy of the Year’.

  17. vlad the impaler Says:

    I would love to know where he lives in New York, this “hip” part the article mentions.

  18. M Says:

    The guy’s name is degrading and vulgar?

    That’s a bit of unfair, no?

  19. Miguel Antonio Says:

    I didn’t say his name *is* something, instead I said it *seems* degrading and vulgar. And I forgot to mention it seems dull as well.

  20. M Says:

    Congrats. You win. The idea that a man’s name is — or even seems — “degrading and vulgar” is the single dumbest thing I’ve ever read on this site. And over the last four years I have seen a whole lot of dumb.

    You, sir, are a bloviating idiot.

  21. Miguel Antonio Says:

    So, ¿do you think it’s good for a gentleman to have the name of a mascot?. It’s the smartest thing I have read on this site, you are one of greatest genius of our age. On the other hand I feel so ashamed of myself for being a bloviating idiot.

  22. M Says:

    It is fair to criticize a man for what he can change. It is not fair to criticize a man for what he cannot. Criticizing a man for the name that his culture and his family bequeathed him shows a cultural ignorance and provinciality so deep that it frankly staggers the imagination. It’s just plain stupid.

    Again, you get the award for Dumbest Comment Ever.

  23. Miguel Antonio Says:

    I’m not critizing him for that, in fact I think he is a good person and probably a good dandy. I mentioned my subjective view on his naming because HRH The Duke of Windsor made a coment that his naming was not appropiate. I’m certain his naming was one of the factors at play that heavily influenced others to protest his selection as dandy of the year. However you don’t seem to get this nor that I think he is reasonable as ‘Dandy of The Year’. You are so simple minded and dull, that I prefer to be seen as stupid by you.

  24. M Says:

    It would help if you wrote in plain English. It would also help if you read the Duke’s comment more carefully. In the Duke’s phraseology, “naming” refers to the act of this website choosing Elkann as “Dandy of the Year” in the first place. It has nothing whatever to do with the man’s actual name “Lapo Elkann.”

    Am I right, Duke?

  25. Miguel Antonio Says:

    As you can see I’m not a native english speaker, however I will do my best to improve.

  26. M Says:

    I did not realise that. Well, your English will always be better than my Spanish.

  27. HRH Duke of Windsor Says:

    You were entirely correct M but as Mr. Antonio has stated in his defence, English is not his first language and we should make allowances for unfamiliarity of usage.

  28. Laguna Beach Trad Says:

    Nicely done. Lapo is a fitting choice, I think, although in some of the photos I have seen he is too fashion-forward and eccentric for my tastes, for what it’s worth. Then again, he is a young guy. I do admire his creativity. Lapo’s professed disdain for logos is a little curious considering the tattoos and Italian flag motifs.

  29. G~ Says:

    I think I’m going to join Senor Antonio in the dumbest comment ever club. The Name Lapo Elkann sounds like a pig Latin version “a can of Alpo”. If I were born with that name I’d have it changed to something more respectable. I don’t even believe it sounds poetic in Italian/Portuguese or where ever the name comes from; it just sounds eccentric, and I think that was the goal.

  30. Andrea Sperelli Says:

    Ho sempre giudicato Elkann un personaggio volgare, con una banalità di stile adatta alle masse più villane; è oltretutto un analfabeta, martire (nonché santo assolto) dei e dai media italiani; protagonista di rotocalchi buoni per la spazzatura, sogno delle adolescenti vestiste di plastica rosa, un disonore per il suo elegantissimo nonno. Ciò non fa che confermare l’opinione che da tempo nutrivo sull’attendibilità di questo sito.

  31. HRH The Duke of Windsor Says:

    Ha ha, I don’t even speak Italian and I got what Andrea was saying.

  32. M Says:

    I think the key is “volgare.”

  33. Christian Says:

    A Dean Martin classic.

  34. JES Says:

    Last year’s dandy or this year’s?

  35. Miguel Antonio Says:

    M you forgot “analfabeta” (illiterate). After doing a quick review, I think it’s better to leave Sperelli’s comment untranslated ;).

  36. Nick Willard Says:

    Sperelli can write passable English when he tries, so I can only assume that he intentionally wrote in Italian so that a majority of our readers wouldn’t understand what he wrote.

  37. Christian Says:

    My sister’s translation of Sperelli:

    “I have always found Elkann vulgar, with a banality of style aimed at mass appeal. He is above all an illiterate (schmuck), martyr and absolved saint of the Italian media. He is the hero of the glossy magazine, the pink plastic dream of adolescents and a dishonor to his supremely elegant grandfather. This merely confirms my growing questioning (opinion) of the credibility of this site.”

  38. Christian Says:

    Credibility? We have no credibility for this site, save for the genius of creating it in the first place.

  39. Miguel Antonio Says:

    Brummell was probably considered vulgar in his time. I don’t see what is the diference between Brummell and Elkann, besides that Brummell was probably a genius and Elkann is only a very talented man.

  40. the new edwardian Says:

    If what Andrea Sperelli said is true than I really like this Lapo Elkann although he could use a good barber.

  41. Miguel Antonio Says:

    Is there a dandy of Gianni’s stature living now? If the answer is yes, maybe Sperelli is correct in doubting the credibility of this site.

  42. The Nouveau Edwardian Says:

    Is that a denim shirt Lapo is wearing? God do I hate denim shirts and with a tie for god sakes?!?!

    Miguel,

    You can please some of the people some of the time, but you can’t please all of the people all of the time. Now bugger off!

  43. Miguel Antonio Says:

    I alredy knew that. I had the hope Mr. Sperelli was referring to some objective truth, however it might turn out as an entirely biased judgement.

  44. Andrea Sperelli Says:

    Lapo Elkann, mio ex-concittadino, sul quale non ho nessuno pregiudizio di tipo morale (altrimeni non scriverei di dandysmo), appare su questo sito come “Dandy dell’anno”, ed è stato eletto “Uomo più elegante” da Vogue America (http://www.style.com/vogue/feature/060507/page2.html).
    Due considerazioni:
    Un presunto intellettuale che si fida di una volgare rivista da parrucchieri come Vogue dovrebbe riconsiderare la sua “genialità”.
    Secondo: mai vista iniziativa più cretina di eleggere un dandy dell’anno (il test per sapere “quanto sei dandy” mi pareva già abbastanza allucinante).
    Ma vediamo insieme qualche foto di Lapo Elkann:
    http://andrea-sperelli.livejournal.com/29087.html
    http://www.noveporte.it/dandy/taccuino.php3

  45. Bricology Says:

    You neglected to include this picture with your article: http://tinyurl.com/ytr59s
    As we all know, nothing better befits a dandy than a backwards baseball cap.

  46. The Nouveau Edwardian Says:

    I hate to admit it, but after seeing the photos Andrea Sperelli posted I have to agree Lapo may not have been the best choice.

  47. ontwins Says:

    Yikes! Backward baseball hats. That is rather an un-dandy looking picture. I’m beginning to wonder if our man of the year title should have gone to me after all.

  48. RJS Says:

    In the (slightly modified) words of G~ Says: “I ask myself, is he truly pursuing elegance?” He looks as if something (or someone) has been pursuing HIM in these images. But I am certain that the powers that be have deliberated much over their choice. We bow respectfully to their wisdom (but wisely refrain from imitating Fabio).

  49. Andrea Sperelli Says:

    Merci, Nouveau Edwardian. Cio’ ripaga in parte i miei sforzi. Adieu.

  50. RCH Says:

    Keith Haring pants, illiterate Kanji tattoos, polyester football jersies — oh so dandyish! Perhaps the bar is being lowered in preparation for Chensvold declaring himself Dandy of the Year in 2009?

  51. Andrea Sperelli Says:

    …Dimenticavo: questa la linea di prodotti di marca (griffe) realizzata e gestita da Lapo Elkann: http://www.italiaindependent.com/eng/

  52. Nick Willard Says:

    RCH, You think too small. Chenners is being declared Dandy of the Year for Life.

  53. M Says:

    Well, Bricology, at least he isn’t wearing the sort of plaid used-car salesman get-up and barbershop quartet ‘stache preferred your good pal, you-know-who.

    See you in ‘Frisco soon, old boy.

  54. Bricology Says:

    M wrote “Well, Bricology, at least he isn’t wearing the sort of plaid used-car salesman get-up…preferred your good pal, you-know-who.”

    You must have a peculiar class of used-car salesmen down in East Bakersfield, or wherever you are, if their plaid suits are bespoke (not to mention if they’re being fêted by the world, having their books published and their life stories made into movies by Johnny Depp, and generally having the last laugh of the good life.)

    It’s almost enough to make one suspect that your taste in wine includes sour grapes.

  55. M Says:

    Those who can’t handle criticism always make that same lame defense.

  56. Miguel Antonio Says:

    Andrea Sperelli forgot to mention Elkann’s Myspace profile. http://profile.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=user.viewprofile&friendid=32502368

  57. Bricology Says:

    M writes “Those who can’t handle criticism always make that same lame defense.”

    Is that what passes for “criticism” in your burg? Comparing someone’s clothes to a used car salesman, or their mustache a barbershop quartet? I’m old, but I’m not old enough to remember the first time those tired old similes were employed. At least you could’ve said something like “his suits remind one of a riot in a pipe-cleaner factory”, or “his mustache worries Chester Arthur’s ghost”.

    Frankly, I doubt you’re any more qualified to critique Mr. Crawford’s persona than you are to critique Sr. Antonio’s use of English (see above). Perhaps it is too late to quit while you’re still behind, but please don’t let me keep you from trying.

  58. Nick Willard Says:

    Gentlemen, can we confine our name-calling to Lapo, please?

  59. Christian Says:

    How about confining it to you, you’re the one who picked him.

    By the way Bricology, I like your writing style. Would you like to write for us?

  60. Nick Willard Says:

    It was brilliant of me, wasn’t it?

  61. LBT Says:

    Absolutely.

  62. Bricology Says:

    Christian Chensvold wrote “Why do you think Mattis lives in a burg? Whimsy lives in a burg. Mattis lives in LA and is about to move to San Francisco.”

    Why do you presume that “burg” is pejorative? As any cosmopolite knows, it’s simply German for “town”. There’s nothing inherently wrong with towns; I’ve lived in a few good ones myself, and intend to again. But unless one is speaking of the downtown portion of Los Angeles (and does “M” live there?), that place is nothing other than a collection of towns, set cheek-by-jowl. But how, once again, does the matter keep getting shifted to Whimsy? Is that what this is? -a duel by proxy between Whimsy and “M”?

    “Michael’s pretty qualified to critique him, too…”

    That’s some dandy circular reasoning you’ve got there, son. Posting links to your own virtual rag as credentials is bad form and unlikely to impress.

    “All the bespoke in the world won’t change the fact that Whimsy is a bad dresser.”

    I can guarantee you that you cannot find a photograph of Whimsy wearing Keith Haring pants or a backwards baseball cap, as opposed to your paragon of dandyism de l’année, as seen above, so I can’t put much stock in your ability to distinguish between the “bad dressers” and good. It’s also rather coy coming from someone who pretends to be the arbiter of such matters while exposing so little of their own supposed “good dressing” to the on-line world. I wonder if some folks from the Santa Rosa (sorry — “the Sonoma Wine Country”) of your past can share photos of you, taken pre-2002 or so. I suspect that your readers would be roughly as impressed with your pre-Dandyism.net appearance as I am with your Miyata-with-go-fast-stripes. As we all know, there’s no zealot like a recent convert.

    “As for the publication of his book, it’s clear it made a lifelong nobody instantly feel like a somebody.”

    That could certainly apply to this statement: “We have no credibility for this site, save for the genius of creating it in the first place.” Your own credentials as a “somebody” are remarkably thin — thinner by far than Mr. Crawford’s. But that you manage to always build column-inches out of criticizing him has not been lost on others. We make news where and how we can, eh?

  63. Bricology Says:

    Christian Chensvold wrote “By the way Bricology, I like your writing style. Would you like to write for us?”

    Thank you, but no thanks. I have as much an aversion to criticizing the harmless as I have to praising the unworthy.

  64. Christian Says:

    Well said. Want a job?

    By the way, there’s a photo of me pre-2002 on the front page right now.

    Oh, and the stripes are gone.

  65. Christian Says:

    Bric wrote:

    Thank you, but no thanks.

    Just don’t say I wasn’t a sport.

  66. Bricology Says:

    Yes, you’re presently being a sport towards me. Thank you.

    What I would like to know is why you choose to privilege Mr. Elkann — with his multitude of sartorial sins — over Mr. Crawford of whom, as you know, may be found at least as healthy a percentage of images of himself well-dressed as may be found of the former? Especially considering that the latter has never (to my knowledge) referred to himself as a paragon of dandyism? He’s a cheerfully admitted eccentric, a jester, a botanical sport.

    To observers besides myself, it seems as if you have gone far beyond a simple reaction to images of Mr. Crawford that you consider to evince “bad dressing”, well onto the personal level. This has always mystified me. In a sub-subculture as small as this, I cannot fathom why so much bile has been directed his way, unless one wanted to cultivate controversy, or had a personal grudge to nurture. I doubt that Whimsy would be offended if you said that he wasn’t a “dandy” (presuming you were qualified to judge such things), but to say he is a “bad dresser” is simply farcical, compared to the near-100% of his peers who dress far worse than he. If Whimsy wore nothing but his custom-made Florentine shirts and borrowed Dockers, he would still be better-dressed than most men.

    Regardless, apparently I’m more impressed by an individual’s goodness and their playful eccentricities than I am in their adherence to some contrived standard as advanced by you, me or anyone else. And I truly believe that the cause of encouraging all gentlemen to dress thoughtfully would be better served by tolerance and good humor than by divisiveness. You are, of course, free to disagree.

  67. Christian Says:

    Quote: “presuming you were qualified to judge such things.”

    All this talk about being qualified is hysterical.

    I have dyswhimsia, so I’ve said all I have to say on him for today. But your line of reasoning is telling: You emphasize what distinguishes Whimsy from a common slob, and this point of view in certain subsects in Dandyland is something we’re quite opposed to.

    W’s book and persona are based on what makes him different from the masses of badly dressed men. We’re interested in what distinguishes the dandy from well dressed men — it’s a matter of being primer inter pares. We are not personally hurt by the fact that we live in a vulgar age. Instead we take an ironic delight in it. We have no motivation to stand out from people who aren’t worth bothering to stand out from.

    This motivation, that dandyism is a means of standing out against the slovenly masses, rather than for shining in civilized society, is particularly attractive to the younger set in Dandyland, and those with goth backgrounds, and has been addressed by Mattis in the essays cited above. In fact, it was Whimsy who taught us the art of linking to one’s previous posts.

    As for the choice of Elmann, I’ll come out and say that it was an executive decision not made by me nor the Junta. It’s been very interesting to see the response, especially by those who dislike us, who surely comprise our most loyal readership. People are far more irked by his appearance than the reasons for his choosing cited in the article. Though I may not think much of his style, considering that we’ve long been considered dandy fundamentalists, I appreciate the spirit of audacity that fueled the choice.

  68. the new edwardian Says:

    I say, this has been very entertaining. I’ve been eating popcorn and watching the comments fly back and forth all night long.

    Bricology,
    I took a wonderful mulled wine recipe off your site, which I may cook up tomorrow to aid in defence of this cold Florida weather of late, so thanks. Now, as for Whimsy, I think the word “fêted” is hardly appropriate. Last I heard he was the guest speaker at the Corduroy Club and I doubt seriously that a film version of his life starring Johnny Depp will ever make it to actual production. Just my 2 cents for whatever that is worth…probably not even 2 cents.

    I do agree that Lapo was not a very good choice and maybe G’s suggestion that people vote on a Dandy of the Year would be a better solution. Maybe just for fun, Whimsy could be one of the candidates? Again, just my 2 cents.

  69. Bricology Says:

    “All this talk about being qualified is hysterical.”

    And yet apparently it is the very foundation of your website. Who but the qualified (or professedly so) would make one pronouncement after another about whether another is or isn’t *anything*? This is particularly ironic coming from you, who declared “The real dandy movement was associated with major intellectuals like Camus and Proust” — a fact shockingly missed by Brummel’s many biographers who paint him as no manner of intellectual, as well as Camus’ biographers, who never even skirt dandyism. Who but a reasonably qualified (read: well-informed) person would make such claims? You, apparently. You go on to adjudicate upon whether or not Wilde was a dandy (“not”), as well as Elkann (“is”).

    (You also declared *yourself* to be a dandy, under “Selected Writings by Christian M. Chensvold”, where you state, in the third person, “We also found a photo of what Chensvold looked like during the article’s composition. He is pictured above stepping away from his desk for a cup of coffee…He has certainly evolved into a true dandy.” I might as well ask: are you “qualified” to judge yourself, in the first or third person?)

    “I have dyswhimsia, so I’ve said all I have to say on him for today. But your line of reasoning is telling: You emphasize what distinguishes Whimsy from a common slob, and this point of view in certain subsects in Dandyland is something we’re quite opposed to. W’s book and persona are based on what makes him different from the masses of badly dressed men. We’re interested in what distinguishes the dandy from well dressed men — it’s a matter of being primer inter pares.”

    Again, you’ve simply set yourself up as the “qualified” arbitrator, in the absence of codified standards. And your “dyswhimsia” says far more about you than it does about Whimsy whom, as far as I can tell, has never bothered to say an ill word about you, in contrast to the frequent ad hominemery against him here. Does determining “what distinguishes the dandy from well dressed men” require qualification? If not, then why should one take your opinion over say, that of Michael Moore on the subject?

    More to the point, since Whimsy is, in your estimation, neither a “well-dressed man” nor a dandy, then why pray tell is his name even mentioned on this website once, much less than something like seventy times?! You can’t have it both ways. Either he is well-dressed but no dandy, or a dandy, but not well-dressed; given your expressed criteria, there is no other justification for him being discussed here. Unless perhaps you have some other agenda.

  70. Bricology Says:

    New Edw: I’m glad that the glühwein recipe pleased. No doubt it could be improved upon, and I’d welcome any feedback.

    As for Whimsy — I would indeed use the word “fêted”, but perhaps I’m more familiar with his social calendar than are most. He’s busy and in-demand, but more importantly, there are hundreds of people who scarcely know him and yet are predisposed to extend generous hospitality to him for no reason other than their appreciation of his persona and character. I can’t think of too many other people who rate that reception. I don’t, and I doubt that anyone who participates here does either.

    Perhaps the film will be made, perhaps it won’t. It’s moving along through the screenplay, which is a positive sign, and Mr. Depp has the wherewithal to do anything he likes, so I’m optimistic.

    “I do agree that Lapo was not a very good choice and maybe G’s suggestion that people vote on a Dandy of the Year would be a better solution. Maybe just for fun, Whimsy could be one of the candidates? Again, just my 2 cents.”

    I don’t know that I would vote for Whimsy as “Dandy of the Year”; his style is too heterodox for that title. Off the top of my head, I’d say that “Andrea Sperelli” would be a more appropriate choice, or perhaps James Jimenez or Dickon Edwards. But I suspect it’s a moot point, as it’s unlikely that the choice of Elkann will be changed, or that management will grant the future awarding of this title to the reader.

  71. M Says:

    My, my! It seems I was the only one who spent the evening out, for a change.

    Bric: The most telling quote in all of your windy diatribes last evening begins: “In a sub-subculture as small as this…”

    Subculture? What? Dandyism is not now nor has ever been a subculture. Once someone has been identified as member of a subculture he must cease all claims on dandyism. It is an entirely individual exercise. It’s clear that you just plain don’t get it, and at its most fundamental level.

    As to quals, well, if we’re so unqualified, why are you so offended, and why are you bothering with the all the wind? (Doesn’t your “sour grapes” reasoning work a bit like that?)

    And by the way, other successful people whose dandyism I have criticized on this site include: Oscar Wilde, James Abbot McNeil Whistler, Lucious Beebe, The Marchesa Casati, Quentin Crisp (“…charming though he was, the man looked like a grandmother playing the nickel slots in Vegas…”), McDermott & McGough, Andre Benjamin, Derek Watkins and Patrick MacDonald. Rest assured, my friend, I do not want to live the lives of any of these people any more than I do Lord Whimsy’s or yours.

    Lastly, there are plenty of photographs of yours truly in the forum section of this site. Heck, there’s even one of me in shirtless, wearing leiderhosen and holding shotgun at Burning Man. I posted it myself. The New Edwardian can point you to them to you to enjoy. I think it’s fun to look back on them. If you want to see recent photo, feel free to drop by http://www.travelswest.com and scroll down a bit. Enjoy and see you in ‘Frisco.

    Chenners: Boy’s got some writing style but good God, the wind! You’d have to do quite a bit of editing.

  72. the new edwardian Says:

    Cher Bricology,

    I’ll be sure to let you know how the mulled wine turns out. I’m actually quite excited to make some since Florida is hardly the environment for mulled wine, so I’m taking advantage of this cold snap to enjoy such things. I’m even wearing my tweed jacket.

    As for Whimsy, may I say it is most admirable your defense of him. He is obviously a friend of yours, or at least someone you like, so good for you. I’m not ignorant to what he does, but to me, speeches at the Corduroy club or some antique shop just don’t equate to be fêted by the world. I’m sure he is a nice guy and as far as I know the dandyism.net website had no problem with him dressing as he does, but when he began to proclaim himself a modern dandy people here questioned that. I believe it was that questioning by people here which made him recant the notion that he is a dandy since he no longer claims to be so. I believe that if you are going to put yourself out in the public and claim to be a dandy than you may face some scrutiny. Dandyism.net is hardly an unfair website. Just the fact that your comments are posted here should tell you that. The forum itself may be full of like-minded individuals, but is always open to debate. You are always welcome to join us in the forum and I hope you do. Again just my 2 cents and the opinion of a lowly forum member.

    I’ll let you know how the mulled wine turned out.

    Cheers,

    New Edwardian

  73. M Says:

    Back to the original subject: The fact that people are so in arms about Elkann is telling on a number of levels. For one it shows just how retro-eccentric and indeed reactionary many of our readers are.

    For another, it shows just how little people are really thinking about this award as a piece of ephemera. Elkann wasn’t named “Dandy of All Time,” “Dandy of the Century” or even “Dandy of the Decade.” He was named “Dandy of the Year.” This year.

    He may not have been a dandy last year, and he may not be a dandy next year. But he is our dandy this year. (After all, Brummell himself was really only a dandy between his “discovery” in 1794 and 1816, when he fled all but penniless to France. And his was exceptionally long run.)

    At first I had misgivings about the selection, but after some consideration — and admittedly taking in much of the reaction here with considerable relish — I have decided that I approve. We are not only afflicting the comfortable but also afflicting the affected then we are doing our jobs well indeed.

    Perhaps next year we will choose Sperelli. That is, if he can manage to cut the retro-eccentric schtick, tone down the effeminacy, and quit posting those countless self portraits — an onanistic obsession with sartorial porn so vulgar that it makes Elkann’s Keith Haring trousers seem subtle by comparison.

  74. Laguna Beach Trad Says:

    The agitated reactions to the selection seem so…un-dandyish. Borderline hysteria, in a few cases. It is most amusing to watch. Where is the reserve? Where is the dignity? I note that several commentators here appear to care far too much. It’s just not on.

  75. Christian Says:

    “Un-dandyish” is the ultimate accusation in Dandyland. We use it all the time.

  76. M Says:

    Execellent point, Trad. I admit to being among the chief offenders.

  77. the new edwardian Says:

    M wrote,
    “Lastly, there are plenty of photographs of yours truly in the forum section of this site. Heck, there’s even one of me in shirtless, wearing leiderhosen and holding shotgun at Burning Man. I posted it myself. The New Edwardian can point you to them to you to enjoy. I think it’s fun to look back on them. If you want to see recent photo, feel free to drop by http://www.travelswest.com and scroll down a bit. Enjoy and see you in ‘Frisco.”

    Me? Why Me? I think you may believe that I know Mr. Bricology. True I’ve seen said photos and I did enjoy them as much as you enjoyed the one of me from a shaggy hair days, but sorry I couldn’t tell Mr. Bricology where to find them now-a-days. My favorite was the one in which you were actually elegantly attired and flipping off the camera man – classic & dandyish.

    As for Lapo, M, you make a valid point in that he isn’t the end all, be all of dandyism, but only this year’s choice. Dandyism.net could have done far worse. At least one good thing is that I believe this story generated a great deal of interest and comments.

    Laguna Beach Trad, good point also.

  78. M Says:

    *Me? Why Me?*

    Only because you once gathered all the really bad photos of me and put them all together in one Forum post. Wasn’t that you?

  79. the new edwardian Says:

    “Only because you once gathered all the really bad photos of me and put them all together in one Forum post. Wasn’t that you?”

    Oh yeah, but that was after you were making fun of my drunken photo I posted. Remember I had a tart upon my lap, a libation in my hand and curse of all curses, my shirt was untucked? After you gave me a hard time for posting that photo I had to show you some of the photos you posted, which we equally as bad as my own. No hard feelings I hope. I have no idea where that posting is now or how to direct anyone to it, so sorry M, I’m afraid I can’t help. Perhaps it only goes to show that while many of strive for dandy perfection we are all only human after all including Mr. Lapo.

  80. Miguel Antonio Says:

    Lapo is not human, he is an extraterrestrial intelligence.

  81. Bricology Says:

    M wrote “Bric: The most telling quote in all of your windy diatribes last evening begins: ‘In a sub-subculture as small as this…’ Subculture? What? Dandyism is not now nor has ever been a subculture. Once someone has been identified as member of a subculture he must cease all claims on dandyism. It is an entirely individual exercise. It’s clear that you just plain don’t get it, and at its most fundamental level.”

    Oh, please — don’t let’s be disingenuous. Of _course_ this is a subculture — what rubbish to suggest otherwise! It’s an absurd statement on its face to claim that a subject which so many here have spilt countless pixels categorizing those into “dandy” and “not dandy” could possibly be anything but a subculture! “Extremely individual exercise”? What on earth makes you think that a subculture cannot accommodate “extreme individualism”? Speaking as someone who was a hardcore punk in the first wave of that subculture, I assure you that not only was the movement all about “extreme individualism”, but many members concerned themselves with separating the “non-punks” from the “true punks”. Do you really think that, just because one gentleman is wearing a bespoke suit with four operable buttons on each sleeve, while the other is wearing a duct-tape-decorated t-shirt, that one is demonstrating “extreme individualism”, but not the other? What utter nonsense. If it isn’t a subculture, then you cannot exclude others. QED.

    “And by the way, other successful people whose dandyism I have criticized on this site include: Oscar Wilde, James Abbot McNeil Whistler, Lucious Beebe, The Marchesa Casati, Quentin Crisp (”…charming though he was, the man looked like a grandmother playing the nickel slots in Vegas…”), McDermott & McGough, Andre Benjamin, Derek Watkins and Patrick MacDonald.”

    I’m still trying to determine if your criticism evinces a morbidly enlarged spleen or merely a fool’s enterprise. And why do you do this? Why do you set yourself up as qualified to critique these people — most of whom are far beyond you in many measurable ways? And “qualifications” are indeed at the bottom of this mess; a person raised on McDonald’s would never consider themselves worthy of critiquing Alain Ducasse. You may not have it both ways either: you are either qualified to critique those who I believe to be your betters, or you are unqualified, in which case you’re wasting everyone’s time.

    “Lastly, there are plenty of photographs of yours truly in the forum section of this site.”

    Are you Mr. Chensvold posting under an alt? After all, it was his photographs about which I inquired. The prospect of seeing photos of you, shirtless at Burning Man, could not interest me less. But if that is you holding hands with “Fonzworth Bentley” on your blog, then I’m doubly mystified as to why anyone should give the slightest attention to your opinion on matters sartorial. An ill-fitting pinstriped suitcoat and non-matching trousers? Chin stubble? A hat, indoors? I’m sure you’ll be relieved to know that you have rendered me speechless.

  82. M Says:

    Well, I see ol’ Bric found the meth again!

  83. Bricology Says:

    The New Edwardian wrote “As for Whimsy…speeches at the Corduroy club or some antique shop just don’t equate to be fêted by the world.”

    Again, you misunderstand the very nature of the beast. Thousands of people all over the globe know and admire Whimsy. I can confidently say that he can arrive in any reasonably large city in the US, and many in Europe and Asia, and be fêted indeed — toasted, hosted, entertained and put-up, by people who have never met him in person, and who ask for nothing in return. This is precisely what happened the past winter, here in San Francisco. Would the same red carpet be extended for you? For “M” or Chensvold? It certainly wouldn’t for me.

    “I’m sure he is a nice guy and as far as I know the dandyism.net website had no problem with him dressing as he does, but when he began to proclaim himself a modern dandy people here questioned that.”

    Ah yes — the questioning of those who would like to claim that they do not need any qualifications, and who do not consider dandyism to be a subculture. So…the point of “questioning” his qualifications as a dandy was predicated upon what — a whim? I mean no offense, but I really haven’t managed to see the sense behind this equation: (1) We (the members of D.net) do not need qualifications with which to critique, and (2) Dandyism does not constitute a subculture, yet (3) we can make pronouncements upon those who are unqualified to be called “dandies”, and who may legitimately be included within that nonexistent subculture. This is madness. Well, perhaps not madness, but at least cognitive dissonance.

  84. Bricology Says:

    M — my wife is suffering with a cold, and I’m keeping her company at home. Unless the sound of my typing disturbs her, I’ll likely continue posting here, and elsewhere, as whim dictates. I trust you have no objection to that.

  85. Bricology Says:

    M wrote “The fact that people are so in arms about Elkann is telling on a number of levels. For one it shows just how retro-eccentric and indeed reactionary many of our readers are. For another, it shows just how little people are really thinking about this award as a piece of ephemera…At first I had misgivings about the selection, but after some consideration — and admittedly taking in much of the reaction here with considerable relish — I have decided that I approve. We are not only afflicting the comfortable but also afflicting the affected then we are doing our jobs well indeed.”

    I hope you don’t pull a muscle while patting yourself on the back. It’s amusing — when _you_ take a polemical position, it’s a daring act. When _readers_ make polemical statements to the contrary, it’s magically transformed into approval and validation of you! Let me know how that hubris is working out for you.

    “Perhaps next year we will choose Sperelli. That is, if he can manage to cut the retro-eccentric schtick, tone down the effeminacy, and quit posting those countless self portraits — an onanistic obsession with sartorial porn so vulgar that it makes Elkann’s Keith Haring trousers seem subtle by comparison.”

    Oh, thank you so much for the laugh! You were being facetious, right? I mean — the idea of Mr. Stubble-chin, mismatched-suit deigning to give consideration to approving of “Sperelli”, should he make certain specific changes, could not be anything but a caricature of pretension. It’s the manager of a Denny’s advising Alain Passard that he may be granted another Michelin star, if only he stops using so many ingredients. And “tone down the effeminacy” is cute code for “don’t look gay”. I had forgotten how afraid so much of southern California still was of anything that threatens the image of rugged manhood. It’s a relief to know that you meant it all in jest, tho’.

  86. the new edwardian Says:

    “Ah yes — the questioning of those who would like to claim that they do not need any qualifications, and who do not consider dandyism to be a subculture. So…the point of “questioning” his qualifications as a dandy was predicated upon what — a whim? I mean no offense, but I really haven’t managed to see the sense behind this equation: (1) We (the members of D.net) do not need qualifications with which to critique, and (2) Dandyism does not constitute a subculture, yet (3) we can make pronouncements upon those who are unqualified to be called “dandies”, and who may legitimately be included within that nonexistent subculture. This is madness. Well, perhaps not madness, but at least cognitive dissonance.”

    I think you may be making it a bit more complicated than it is. Whimsy, in my humble opinion could never be a dandy simple because he is an object of ridicule in the way he dresses and the jester-like manner in which he carries himself. He acts more clownish than ever a refined man of taste. All of which is fine by me, but when he began to preach to the world that he was a dandy I had to shake my head. A dandy should never be ridicules and Whimsy’s attire was at times quite so. You don’t have to read too much Baudelaire to see he misses the mark. He obviously felt the same because after receiving criticism, from this forum & elsewhere, he ceased to call himself a dandy. I believe even you; a defender of his would be hard pressed to assert Whimsy as a true dandy although it is a rather moot point these days since he no longer claims to be such. I have no other problem with him personally and I even purchased his book although I must confess that I was disappointed with it. I suppose if you are graphics designer it is a nice book, but other than that there wasn’t much substance.

    By the way, I made your mulled wine recipe tonight, which pleased a few friends to no end. However, one thing, what in the world is a green cardamom pods? I asked my grocer, but he is a refugee from Venezuela, so obvious he hadn’t a clue.

  87. M Says:

    My dear boy I sincerely hope your wife improves. And I certainly have no objections to your typing here or anywhere else. After all, it’s clearly what you’re best at.

  88. Bricology Says:

    New Edwardian — I’m glad to hear that the grog was well-received. Green cardamom pods are often found at Indian or Middle-Eastern markets. However, there were enough other spices involved to keep it from being missed, I’m sure.

    You wrote “I think you may be making it a bit more complicated than it is. Whimsy, in my humble opinion could never be a dandy simple because he is an object of ridicule in the way he dresses and the jester-like manner in which he carries himself. He acts more clownish than ever a refined man of taste. All of which is fine by me, but when he began to preach to the world that he was a dandy I had to shake my head. A dandy should never be ridicules and Whimsy’s attire was at times quite so. You don’t have to read too much Baudelaire to see he misses the mark. He obviously felt the same because after receiving criticism, from this forum & elsewhere, he ceased to call himself a dandy. I believe even you; a defender of his would be hard pressed to assert Whimsy as a true dandy…”

    I freely agree that Whimsy’s persona has a comic element. Has it ever occurred to you that every stuffy, hidebound group needs a little light relief? I’m not putting Whimsy forward as dandyism’s jester, but mein gott! –you people take it all as if it were the offices of an orthodox church, in need of defense from the hordes of pagans, rather than a healthily-flexible philosophy. Some people have such a fear of Whimsy bringing ridicule upon poor, vulnerable dandyism that they’ve invented a schism with which to distance themselves from Whimsy, and in doing so, have alienated a sizable percentage of other people who, in some way, align themselves with dandyism. Is the rancor thus produced worth the dubious value of defending the supposed purity of dandyism? It seems to me rather like a man who decides that one leg is “nonconforming” and hacks it off to remove the displeasing asymmetry. The offending limb troubles him no more, but at what cost?

    I think that these two statements speak volumes: “Whimsy, in my humble opinion could never be a dandy simple because he is an object of ridicule in the way he dresses and the jester-like manner in which he carries himself” and “I believe even you; a defender of his would be hard pressed to assert Whimsy as a true dandy” . This sounds like nothing so much as a theological argument. Who defines what “dandyism” is? Is it you? Or high-priest Chensvold? Or Sebastian Horsley? Doran Wittelsbach? Whimsy? Me? Whoever gets their book published first? (Clearly, that’s what set Horsley against Whimsy: Horsley was afraid that Whimsy’s book — not to mention the prospect of the movie! — would steal the thunder away from his own book. It was transparent to anyone who is familiar with both of them.)

    Have you never considered the possibility that what you see in Whimsy as “an object of ridicule” might in reality be his form of self-deprecation, and peculiar sense of humor? That’s what I see. And at the same time, phrases such as “Evenings often find him at the piano performing off-key renditions of Cole Porter, Noel Coward and Charles Trenet…” seem to me not charming modesty, but a poor substitute for either. That anyone finds Whimsy’s gentle goofiness ridiculous but finds this faux-roguishness charming cannot be accounted for in any objective manner.

    And D.net — the self-proclaimed High Church of Dandyism ™, with its aspirationally-authorotative judgments about what and who is and isn’t – is just as doctrinaire and exclusionary as any priesthood, and just as delusional as to its supposed authority. Oh, it’s all tarted up by a sham humility to sell it to the slower readers, but the pretense is there, within every phrase. Behind every “IMHO” lurks a “we know”. High Priest Chensvold didn’t invent dandyism any more than did Beau Brummel, nor is it anyone’s trademark. There were no criteria handed down from the cloud, nor is there an International Court of Dandy Affairs. In that vacuum, it seems preposterous for anyone to claim that anyone else is or isn’t a dandy.

  89. Christian Says:

    You don’t have to be a musician to know when someone’s out of tune. Michael’s been writing incisive essays for this site for three years, and his ideas shouldn’t be discounted simply because of one unforgivable ensemble.

    And if you’re so quick to accuse people of homophobia, why don’t you want to see Mattis with his shirt off at Burning Man?

    Trust me, he’s twice as elegant with half his clothes.

  90. Bricology Says:

    “You don’t have to be a musician to know when someone’s out of tune.”

    You’d have to be a fairly skilled musician to know when someone was playing Schoenberg out of tune. Perhaps the training of some ears here ended with the Baroque.

    “Michael’s been writing incisive essays for this site for three years, and his ideas shouldn’t be discounted simply because of one unforgivable ensemble.”

    I don’t doubt that he can write, and perhaps even write incisively. What I doubt is why anyone should accept what was written as _true_. To wit: “It is impossible to cut a dandy figure without being tall, slender and handsome, or having at least one of those characteristics to a high degree while remaining at least average in the other two.” Oh? Please explain Max Beerbohm, who was none of those. Or Diamond Jim Brady, or Quentin Crisp. No doubt you’ll correspondingly dismiss them as non-dandies. I think it’s far more sensible to say that tall, thin, good-looking men are generally more likely to feel confident enough to dress and behave like dandies. This does not demonstrate a correlation between dandyism and physical types.

    And re Visconti’s “Death in Venice”, you wrote “Dirk Bogarde stars as the doomed protagonist who has a pivotal dandy transformation scene.” Are you referring to the scene in which he has his hair dyed and his face made-up? How does this reconcile with your profession that dandyism is a “manly” pursuit, or with M’s claim that “Sperelli” looks “effeminate”? Such are the dangers of making up the rules as one goes along — it’s damned difficult to get all of the parts to fit together. In the absence of an instruction sheet, it would behoove those who attempt to piece such a thing as dandyism together to maintain reserves of humility, generosity and good humor. I see little of those virtues displayed here.

  91. the new edwardian Says:

    I more or less agree with what you say of Whimsy although never a dandy Whimsy will be in my book.

    “And D.net — the self-proclaimed High Church of Dandyism ™, with its aspirationally-authorotative judgments about what and who is and isn’t – is just as doctrinaire and exclusionary as any priesthood, and just as delusional as to its supposed authority. Oh, it’s all tarted up by a sham humility to sell it to the slower readers, but the pretense is there, within every phrase. Behind every “IMHO” lurks a “we know”. High Priest Chensvold didn’t invent dandyism any more than did Beau Brummel, nor is it anyone’s trademark. There were no criteria handed down from the cloud, nor is there an International Court of Dandy Affairs. In that vacuum, it seems preposterous for anyone to claim that anyone else is or isn’t a dandy.”

    I think again you are reading far too much into D.net’s function. Do we judge people who claim to be dandies, sure we do. Why? Because everyone here is interested in all things dandy. All we are is a group of like-minded people who enjoy discussing such things. We can be as critical of Whimsy’s claim to dandyism as you and Andrea Sperelli have been against Lapo’s selection of Dandy of the Year. You clearly have sat in judgment of Lapo and yet you appear to look down when D.net does the same. D.net has just as much right as you to past judgment and perhaps more since it is now the number one site for dandyism on Google. What would give you the ability to judge Lapo, but to deny that same right to people who discuss dandyism on a daily basis here and have done so for years? I’m no defender of Chensvold and in fact he will probably tell you that he doesn’t much care for me however, he has never been anything but fair in his running of this website. Your opinions are posted here for the world to see and rightly so. You make assertions about dandyism and even D.net which should be debated. From what I can see that is what D.net is all about. It is to discuss dandyism past, present, and future. We enjoy discussing all sides to the philosophy and as I said before you should come into our forum and join us. No one here shies away from dissenting opinion and in fact we enjoy it. You really should vent your spleen in the forum where you will hear more opinions regarding a subject that clearly you have an interest in. Here on this comment page you are only hearing a few opinions. D.net is a good place to discuss dandyism, and why it has become perhaps an important site for dandyism on the web today.

    Thanks for the info on the cardamom pods. Florida has returned to warmth again, but perhaps the next cold snap I’ll try it out although I’m thinking a hot toddy for next time.

  92. Ontwins Says:

    Bricology,

    Good man don’t you know that is not chin stubble, that is his sprezzatura.

    Cordially,

    Ontwins

  93. M Says:

    Bric writes: “When _readers_ make polemical statements to the contrary, it’s magically transformed into approval and validation of you! Let me know how that hubris is working out for you.”

    That’s funny, because your friend — the one who has been known to ride bitch on your scooter — uses similar reasoning. He often talks about his “detractors” in terms of his own validation. But then he’s your buddy. And what is this nonsense of underscoring spaces? That’s most undandyish.

    And: ‘“tone down the effeminacy” is cute code for “don’t look gay”.’

    No, it is not. I won’t worry you with the kind “some of my best friends are gay” blather common among certain type of white middle class hipster. Suffice it to say that some of the members of our forum are gay and not only are they not in the least effeminate, they are some of the damnedest handsomest — and beautifully dressed — men I’ve ever seen.

    Oh, and you’re wrong about Southern California, at least in my media milieu. It’s as gay as San Francisco, just without the gay ghetto.

    He says: “you people take it all as if it were the offices of an orthodox church.”

    No, we don’t. And our selection of Elkann shows that we’re far more liberal and heterodox than most of your over-formal, retro-booster pals who are so bent about the choice. Join the Forum and see how much we argue among outselves over the niceties.

    And: “High Priest Chensvold didn’t invent dandyism any more than did Beau Brummel…”

    That’s two “L’s” unless you’re Barbey d’Aurevilly, or me. (Sorry, inside joke.) And by the way, your friend once wrote, erroneously, that Brummell was the “progenitor of dandysim.”

    Furthermore: ‘I don’t doubt that he can write, and perhaps even write incisively. What I doubt is why anyone should accept what was written as _true_. To wit: “It is impossible to cut a dandy figure without being tall, slender and handsome, or having at least one of those characteristics to a high degree while remaining at least average in the other two. Please explain Max Beerbohm, who was none of those. Or Diamond Jim Brady, or Quentin Crisp.”’

    Thanks for the compliment, though I didn’t write the passage above and I am not sure I agree with it. Of your list, though, only Beerbohm was a dandy. In fact, he, along with Osbert Lancaster, is my epitome of the discipline. Diamond Jim falls into the category of what Ellen Moers described as a gent, while Crisp was amusing writer, a charming wit and an entertainer who put on a floppy hat and lady’s scarf and was called a dandy because of it by people who didn’t know any better.

    As to the dandyism as subculture thing: Sorry, but you’ve got that all wrong. Just because there are groups of people on these Internets who read the lit (some more carefully than others, obviously) and comment on it hardly makes for a subculture — there is no defining music, no set of gear around which to fetishize, no set standards of behaviour. There is not even a dress code (which is, again, one of the things that makes the selection of Elkann an apt one.)

    In fact, dandyism is apect of the mainstream culture, and moreover a part of the high culture, and has been so always. The best dandies are the ones who don’t even know they are such. Did Fred Astaire ever utter mention the words “dandy” or “dandyism?” If he did it was probably in a derogatory sense.

    What you do have are a few little groups here and there, mostly made up of recovering (and sometimes not-so-recovering) goths (as on the Refinement group on LiveJournal), mods, neo-victorians, swing kids and other retros who have a thing for playing dress-ups and who may have read Beerbohm’s “Dandies and Dandies” or Barbey d’Aurevilly’s “Dandsyme” and think they know what they’re talking about. Most of them don’t, of course.

    It does not a subculture make. (Says mockingly in a high-pitch: “Q.E.D.”)

    You should take the time to read more of my work. It’s charming, in its own scathing kind of way and who knows? you might even learn something.

    Again, looking forward meeting you in person in the City. Drinks at the Orbit Room or Bourbon & Branch?

    Chenners writes: “Michael’s been writing incisive essays for this site for three years, and his ideas shouldn’t be discounted simply because of one unforgivable ensemble.”

    Unforgivable?! Feh! TheCad.com’s own Matt Deckard complimented me on my outfit that same evening.

    For record, the jacket fit to a nicety six months ago but I’ve lost a pile of weight since then. That, combined with my two-hand-touch reach-across handshake gave it a bit of a bulge in that spur-of-the-moment photo. And it’s not a suit coat but a sports jacket in dark brown with a tan stripe. The trou are charcoal. Didn’t contrast well against that background. But I take your criticism to heart (I asked for it, after all) and will endeavor make improvements.

    As to the “hat indoors” protest, you have to be careful there. The actual rule is that you doff your hat in such places as a private residence, the dining room of a restaurant or hotel, or in church. You don’t have to remove your lid in a bar room, especially not here in the west, or in a retail shop. On that occasion I was in a vintage clothing shop during a very crowded grand opening party. Had I put my hat down even for a moment it would have been sold.

    Chenners has often teased Mr. Stubblechin for his “unfortunate facial hair,” but I’ve resisted as it’s gotten warm reviews from some ladies I admire. Now that I know Bric hates it I’m definitely going to keep it.

    Good God, now I’m the windy one!

  94. lurker Says:

    I haven’t read through all of your pages, so I can’t say what the commenters are like there, but if many of them on this page are retro-eccentric, that may just be response bias: those most upset over the choice will be most likely to leave a comment.

  95. Bricology Says:

    M wrote “That’s funny, because your friend…uses similar reasoning. He often talks about his ‘detractors’ in terms of his own validation.”

    Apples and pineapples. The obvious difference is that Whimsy doesn’t go cooking up rancor the way that D.net does. When was the last time you heard of him taking it upon himself to criticize others, the way you lot so routinely go about it here? His detractors are primarily on D.net, and Sebastian Horsley; I’ve met very few other people with an interest in these matters who hold Whimsy in anything less than the highest regard. I doubt the same can be said for some of the staff of D.net. It certainly can’t be said for Horsley, who offhandedly offends everyone.

    “No, it is not (conflating effeminacy with being gay)…Suffice it to say that some of the members of our forum are gay and not only are they not in the least effeminate, they are some of the damnedest handsomest — and beautifully dressed — men I’ve ever seen. Oh, and you’re wrong about Southern California, at least in my media milieu. It’s as gay as San Francisco, just without the gay ghetto.”

    You must be unfamiliar with West Hollywood. But if your admonition to “Andrea Sperelli” to “tone down the effeminacy” isn’t an aspersion, what is its purpose? What is _wrong_ with some effeminacy? I presume you’re aware that most dandies have, right or wrong, been accused of being effeminate by the non-dandy majority (even Chensvold referenced Dirk Bogarde’s “dandifying” make-up and hair dye in “Death in Venice”), so why the objection? There are only two reasons I can think of why anyone would claim that a little effeminacy is a bad thing: its association with homosexuality, or the fear that it will make a straight man less desirable to women. You’ve dismissed the first possibility, so that leaves the second — a notion that most women I’ve known over the past three decades of adult life would find laughable.

    “And our selection of Elkann shows that we’re far more liberal and heterodox than most of your over-formal, retro-booster pals who are so bent about the choice.”

    Elkann is the poster boy for the traditional, conservative, sporty crowd, and apparently thus a crowd pleaser among your staff. Consider your own style, and that of Pope Chensvold — deeply conservative and traditional. D.net quotes Beerbohm thus: “Dandies must love contemporary costume”. I’m certain that Brummell would disagree, considering the revolutionary transformation he undertook upon men’s clothing! Brummell re-cut the trouser, he developed new ways to tie cravats, he dispensed with non-functional trim (among other advances). No doubt you know all of this, and yet you wear trousers that haven’t changed in a century, you tie your ties just as your grandfathers did, and I’ll wager your suits and coats all have buttons on the sleeves which serve no purpose at all. The Brummell of the 21st century wouldn’t be wearing polo shirts and tweed sportcoats. I suggest that, were he here, he would make a mockery of us all.

    “And by the way, your friend once wrote, erroneously, that Brummell was the ‘progenitor of dandysim’.”

    He was correct in that “progenitor” means “biologically related ancestor” and “serves as a model”, according to dictionary.com. We all know that there were earlier men – probably as far back as Rome – who fit the definitions of dandyism. And Japan was lousy with dandies, at least as far back as about 1600.

    “Of your list, though, only Beerbohm was a dandy. In fact, he, along with Osbert Lancaster, is my epitome of the discipline. Diamond Jim falls into the category of what Ellen Moers described as a gent, while Crisp was amusing writer, a charming wit and an entertainer who put on a floppy hat and lady’s scarf and was called a dandy because of it by people who didn’t know any better.”

    Ah, more pronouncements from above. (No explanation as to how Beerbohm made the cut, despite not meeting D.net’s requirements of being tall, thin or handsome.) Say, I think I’ll give pontification a try as well. Here you go: “no man with habitually unkempt hair can be a dandy. No man with visible tattoos — especially generic ones — can be a dandy. No man who wears backwards baseball caps, synthetic football jerseys and t-shirts in public can ever be a dandy.” Seems perfectly reasonable to me, and I’ve no doubt that Brummell, Beerbohm and Lancaster would readily agree. Well, there goes your “Dandy of the Year”. My, that was easy! How about “no man who drives a Japanese simulation of the Lotus Elan (read: the Mazda Miyata) can be a dandy”. Is it me, or did it just get quieter in here?

    “As to the dandyism as subculture thing: Sorry, but you’ve got that all wrong…there is no defining music, no set of gear around which to fetishize, no set standards of behaviour. There is not even a dress code (which is, again, one of the things that makes the selection of Elkann an apt one.)”

    D.net contains a long list of things which are excluded, which is just as limiting as a short-list of things which are permitted. You dismiss Whimsy as “not a dandy” because of one small (perceived) aspect of his persona — that you find him “ridiculous”. Hell — you attempt to exclude the vast majority of men, just for not being tall, thin and handsome! “Defining music” is hardly a requirement for a subculture; I can name a dozen subcultures off the top of my head that have no defining music. No fetishized gear? Oh, please. Name your favorite tailors and listen to the almost uniformity of rhapsodizing that will follow. A dandy is likely to fetishize Tricker or Lobb shoes as much as a mod fetishizes an SX-200. “Not a dress code”? There’s a rigid non-dress code, and I’m quite surprised that someone who purports to be so well-read in the canon wouldn’t know that. Or should we expect to see dandies depicted on D.net wearing parachute pants and wife-beaters?

    No, dandyism is indeed a subculture, and in it, D.net too often resembles a clique of bitchy high school girls who sit over in the corner and say critical things about the cuter, richer or more popular girls. The priests of D.net don’t have the bespoke wardrobes, the fame or popularity, the impressive social lives, the aristocratic titles or the good looks of others in the subculture? Well, at least they have a venue in which to imagine themselves elevated above them, and a bully pulpit from which to proclaim and criticize. And a little creative reinterpretation of historical figures always provides handy support. But underneath it all, you’re just not in the league of any of your heroes. You’re not innovators, you’re traditionalists, reactionaries.

    But I would say that you’re still dandies. And for all of his faults and vices, so is Horsley, albeit one thoroughly unappetizing to me. And Whimsy’s certainly a dandy, despite your subjective determination of him being “ridiculous” (a charge leveled against Brummell, you should remember). And so are Doran Wittelsbach and others who dip deeply into historical looks. And so am I, for all of my heterodoxy. Lapo Elkann is _not_, for the simple reason that by default, he’s a slob, who sometimes dresses up. At the very least, a dandy should be tidy, and a gentleman, I hope you’d agree. Dandyism isn’t the property of D.net, and you don’t have an exclusive on its distribution. We can figure it out just fine by ourselves, thank you.

    And thankfully, my wife is feeling better, so we’re finally able to get out of the house. Consequently, this will hopefully be the last I have to say on the subject. Feel free to fire the closing volley.

  96. the new edwardian Says:

    Cher Brocology,

    I hate to point it out yet again, but what you appear to have a problem with is D.net making “pronouncements from above” yet with every stroke of your keyboard that is what I’m reading from you. It began with your rejection of Lapo as a dandy and then moved into criticizing D.net. Then you end by actually telling us who is and isn’t a dandy. I can’t help but to find this logic a little bit confusing. I think you are an intelligent person, or so you sound to be, but to criticize D.net for doing what you seem to do seems rather hypocritical. At least D.net consists of a good size forum which includes a few academics and people with qualified backgrounds from LA to London, to Sydney and points in between. Regardless of that, nearly every forum I’ve been on debated the merits of some fact or another. D.net is just like many other forums where people come to give and hear opinions of those interested in Dandyism. The opinions regarding Whimsy were from a great many people who are only associated with D.net via their forum, but whose opinions are their own. I can’t help but to find it quite humorous that you say Whimsy is a dandy, but Lapo isn’t, and then to try and lambaste D.net for criticizing Whimsy. Don’t you see the hypocrisy in your own statements?

    You should also read more of M’s writings since they are quite well done. He is very well read on the subject of dandyism, an expert even, and has contributed for years to this site and in the forum. I can’t help but to wonder if your opinion is as qualified as M’s. Can you direct me to any of your writing?

  97. M Says:

    Bric closes on: And thankfully, my wife is feeling better, so we’re finally able to get out of the house. Consequently, this will hopefully be the last I have to say on the subject. Feel free to fire the closing volley.

    Okay, so drinks at the Orbit Room or Bourbon & Branch, or did you have some other place in mind?

    Cheers!

    Michael Mattis

  98. M Says:

    Oh, and I am pleased to hear that your wife is feeling better.

  99. Bricology Says:

    “I can’t help but to find it quite humorous that you say Whimsy is a dandy, but Lapo isn’t, and then to try and lambaste D.net for criticizing Whimsy. Don’t you see the hypocrisy in your own statements?”

    I don’t, because there isn’t any. I say that Elkann is not a dandy because, at a _bare_minimum_, a dandy cannot be a slob. That’s not a “pronouncement”, it’s the bedrock of sense. Does this look like a dandy to you? http://tinyurl.com/3cc4x4 . You could take the singer from Limp Bizkut (thank the gods I don’t know his name), and dress him in the exact clothing that Elkann is shown wearing at the top of this page, and it would still not make him a dandy. Underneath it all, Elkann has demonstrated that he is a jeans and t-shirt man, with an appalling hairstyle, low-brow tattoos and worse. No amount of praising his face or fawning over his money or social position can make up for that. Talk about lowering the bar for dandies! “Next year: Fred Durst! D.net’s Dandy of the Year!” (And damn me for looking up his name!)

    Whimsy, on the other hand (and “Andrea Sperelli”, and quite a few others) at least meet the basic requirements far better than does Elkann. Don’t you find it even slightly ironic that the same people who dismiss Whimsy as “ridiculous” because of his sense of humor don’t find a man doing speedballs with a tranny hooker, and shilling Fiats — the Big Macs of automobiles — worthy of at least as much ridicule? What planet are these people from? It can’t be this one. This planet usually makes sense.

    “Can you direct me to any of your writing?”

    Sorry, but I’m not a writer. Men have had volumes published on these matters and still been dead wrong with much of it, so I don’t see why I should be impressed by a few essays written on a website by M, you, me or anyone else. We’ve become a culture of dilettantes, but most of us realize that this carries with it no real authority. When M publishes a book explaining his assertions on dandyism and I don’t find it to be riddled with logical fallacies and special pleading, I’ll be impressed. Otherwise, his arguments haven’t impressed me. No amount of prevarication can change the objective evidence that a simple Google Image Search can provide.

  100. M Says:

    I thought you left off? And what about that drink? On me…

  101. The Nouveau Edwardian Says:

    I believe that you either missed or are ignoring my point. I wasn’t trying to establish who is more dandy, Lapo or Whimsy, but only wished to point out to you that you are guilty of what you are criticizing D.net for and that is sitting in judgment of who is or isn’t a dandy. I’m afraid you can’t have it both ways, so if you are going to keep writing that Lapo isn’t a dandy than why can’t I or whomever say what we wish regarding someone like Whimsy, or others. I have no issue with you criticizing Lapo and in fact I agree that he wasn’t a very good choice, but I do have issue with your assertion that D.net is somehow wrong to make the same judgments which you appear to make. I disagree that you are more qualified than anyone at D.net to make such judgments, and I disagree that Whimsy didn’t deserve the criticism he received here at D.net. Most criticism here is based on the opinion of the forum which is a consensus of opinion from people who are well versed with regards to dandyism. There are a wide variety of people in the forum here from distinguished professors, to tailors, to students, to entrepreneurs, to journalists, and so on and so on.

    Now, just for the sake of Quid pro Quo, “Does this look like a dandy to you?” http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2376/2174696721_9761fcbca6_o.jpg , Is this a dandy or a pimp? http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2103/2175500584_69d4d137b1_o.jpg .

  102. Bricology Says:

    Nouveau Edwardian — I’m not trying to establish who is *more* dandy either. I _am_ trying to demonstrate that it is oxymoronic for a slob to be considered a dandy in the first place. I presume that you agree that there is a threshold below which a person cannot sensibly be considered a dandy. A man who lives in filth, who wears only stained tee shirts and sweatpants is simply out of the running, agreed?

    So if you will agree that it is possible to establish fairly objective _minimum_ requirements for being a dandy, then the question is, what are they? D.net attempts to establish them, but its criteria are riddled with illogic and contradiction. For example, here’s what D.net asserts “…are the (twelve) qualities that comprise the anatomy of the dandy, ranked in order of importance: 1. It is impossible to cut a dandy figure without being tall, slender and handsome, or having at least one of those characteristics to a high degree while remaining at least average in the other two.” Does this sound reasonable to you? That a man who is of average height, average build and average handsomeness is automatically precluded from being considered a dandy? –no matter how sophisticated and daring his taste and character? But let’s play along for a moment and accept this as true. What then of Max Beerbohm? D.net considers him to be an arch-dandy, yet he had _none_ of those physical characteristics! No, I believe that this is reverse-engineering. The Lords of Dandyism.net think themselves to possess these qualities, and so they declare them normative. (And full disclosure: I’m 6’3”, thin, and reasonably handsome, so I don’t have a vested interest in excluding those who are different than I.)

    Now consider the other eleven required characteristics cited. In descending order, they are as follows: “Elegance, Self-Mastery, Aplomb, Independence, Wit, A skeptical, world-weary, sophisticated, bored or blasé demeanor, A self-mocking and ultimately endearing egotism, Dignity/Reserve, Discriminating taste, A renaissance man, and Caprice”. I will readily agree that all of these are virtues that dandies would do well to possess. But there are two immediate problems. First, this list was subjectively compiled and ordered (and incomplete, in my opinion) and second, one may find examples of failings in every potential candidate. Standing bare-chested in Lederhosen at BuringMan? Surely that’s an egregious lapse in at least “Elegance” and “Dignity”, if not “Discriminating taste”. Does that mean that M is not a dandy? I wouldn’t go that far.

    It also begs the question as to whether or not the arbiters at D.net actually possess the same qualities they demand from others; it’s one thing to claim a quality, but another to demonstrate it. To my mind, driving a Miyata disproves “Discriminating taste”, given that it is a mass-market Japanese rip-off of the 1960s Lotus Elan (despite Mr. Chensvold referring to it rather obliquely as a “custom roadster”). Of course, Mr. Chensvold is free to disagree with my opinion and to argue in his defense, if he cared to. If the debate was observed with a critical eye by informed arbiters, I believe that I could prove my point. Would that disqualify Mr. Chensvold from being a dandy? I wouldn’t say so. I believe that it would merely show that his particular dandyism isn’t as refined as that of an identical man who drove the original Lotus, or some other vehicle that demonstrated more discriminating taste. Does this not seem reasonable to you? Dandy by degrees, over the threshold.

    So my position is fundamentally different from D.net in the nature of the judgments I put forward. D.net says that people — let’s say Whimsy, for example — are *not* dandies because they lack, I presume, “Dignity”, due to the playfulness he exhibits in his persona. But Whimsy clearly fits the rest of the requirements at least as well as any other living exemplar. “Elegance, Self-Mastery, Aplomb, Independence, Wit, A skeptical, world-weary, sophisticated, bored or blasé demeanor, A self-mocking and ultimately endearing egotism, Discriminating taste, A renaissance man, and Caprice”? Yep – I’ve noted all of these qualities in him. Whither Lapo Elkann? The case against him is, I believe, fatal. Yes, he’s reasonably handsome, and he has enough money to wear whatever luxurious clothing he wants. But he often seems to want to wear slobbish clothing, he’s frequently unkempt, he has abandoned “Dignity” and “Aplomb” on an epic scale, more than once. And yet, D.net declares him a dandy, and Whimsy, not. Does this seem even remotely consistent to you? Can you feature Beerbohm or Brummell ever appearing in public in an undershirt, with their hair a mess?

    Finally, in response to your last question (“Does this look like a dandy to you?”), I would honestly answer “Yes, it looks like a dandy, goofing off.” I’ve been known to goof off at times as well, although I shun cameras at those times. However, I would _never_ appear in public looking like a slob, and I would not wear advertisements for second-rate econoboxes; I certainly have no plans to shoot heroin and party with tranny hookers. There must be a threshold below which one cannot be considered a dandy with any fair defense. Mr. Elkann is demonstrably on the far side, and Whimsy remains on the near.

  103. M Says:

    So… No drink?

  104. Christian Says:

    My Dear Scooooter Rider:

    Quote: “The Lords of Dandyism.net think themselves to possess these qualities.”

    In no way do we claim to be the arbiters of dandyism. We are simply dandyism’s critics, not its practitioners. I’m nobody’s idea of a dandy, though I may be my own idea of one.

    You see, the dandyism of which we speak is not within ourselves, but lives and breathes within Dandyism.net.

    If we actually suckered you into believing that the Anatomy and Quiz were descriptions of ourselves, rather than elaborate ruses we laughed hysterically as we wrote, we’re more clever than I thought.

  105. Bricology Says:

    Mr. Chensvold — claiming that your website’s assertions were all “elaborate rouses” is neither convincing nor particularly clever. It certainly doesn’t encourage anyone to take your current professions of disagreement seriously. So, you now expect us to believe that the twelve “qualities that comprise the anatomy of the dandy” were a pointless confection, and far from the truth, eh? If this were your intention, then why do you praise most of those same qualities in Mr. Elkann, and criticize the supposed lack thereof in Whimsy? Indeed, if none of it were intended to be taken seriously, why bother discussing it with me in this thread? Are you the trolling variety of dandy? Or is this is all just an attempt at the (nonexistent) rules #6 — “Wit”, and #12 — “Caprice”? No, the veneer of farce is its own farce.

    M: what would the purpose of having a drink together? If you find my opinions disagreeable on the page, surely you’d find them more so in person.

  106. M Says:

    “M: what would the purpose of having a drink together? If you find my opinions disagreeable on the page, surely you’d find them more so in person.”

    It’s my sporting nature. You give me a righteous hard time and I invite you for a drink. I’d certainly rather share a drink with someone I disagree with than some slavish little yes man. Come on. It’ll be a lark.

  107. Bricology Says:

    By the way, M — I found your column from two months ago (“The Fake’s Progress”) ironically perspicacious:

    “Similarly, a self-destructive, speedballing sleaze in a t-shirt is just that. But let him pimp his personal bents and character flaws clad in a velvet suit and music-hall version of a gent’s shirt and tie, nail him to a cross (and make sure those cameras are rolling, darling), and he’s suddenly the new Montesquiou.”

    Now, who do we know who’s fond of self-destructive speedballing, sleeze and t-shirts? Ah yes — that would be Mr. Elkann.

  108. the new edwardian Says:

    “Mr. Chensvold — claiming that your website’s assertions were all “elaborate rouses” is neither convincing nor particularly clever. It certainly doesn’t encourage anyone to take your current professions of disagreement seriously. So, you now expect us to believe that the twelve “qualities that comprise the anatomy of the dandy” were a pointless confection, and far from the truth, eh?”

    Maybe you should have read the last line from his “Anatomy of the Dandy.”
    “For in the end there is not a code of dandyism, as Barbey writes. “If there were, anybody could be a dandy.” Get it???

    As to what you wrote in response to me, I’ll let you have the last word and we must simply agree to disagree.

  109. M Says:

    Nice catch, Dr. Derrida Jr.

    Will you drink with me or not?

  110. Christian Says:

    And will you take a ride in my roadster or not?

  111. the new edwardian Says:

    Don’t trust them Mr. Bricology. They are being far too nice, so something is awfully fishy. I think the plan is to get you drunk with M, then into Christian’s roadster and then over to La Brea Tar Pits to liquidate you. Be wary!

  112. Miguel Antonio Says:

    The dignity and reserve of Mr.Bricology won’t allow that to happen.

  113. Laguna Beach Trad Says:

    This discussion is taking a toll on my health. The emotionalism is almost unbearable. I’m afraid I was forced to down two more G&Ts simply to get through his last few posts.

    Carry on, Mr. Bricology.

  114. Bricology Says:

    M: I’ll say “perhaps” on the matter of drinks. When do you move to “Frisco”? (And I do hope you’re using that nickname ironically. Natives have even less a sense of humor than do I.)

    Mr. Chensvold: I’ll take a ride in your roadster if you’ll “ride bitch” on the back of my scooter (as M so incisively wrote)

    New Edwardian: I generally don’t trust people who appear nice but have gone out of their way to ridicule people whom I know to be kind and harmless. In my calculation, such people are worth more than the even the most elite of snobs. And coming from an elitist snob such as myself, that’s significant!

    LBT: Better mix yourself a pitcher — a withering post of overwhelming emotion is coming this way soon. Very soon. Wait for it…

    all: I’ve contributed to the Technorati ratings of this site enough. Please, ye gods! Let it end.

  115. M Says:

    I am a native. I worked at Enrico’s, was friendly with Herb Caen and an investor in Cafe du Nord. Ever go to the Ellington Supper Club Wednesday nights at Cafe du Nord? That was my show.

    Anyway, I always thought “‘Frisco” was charming and used it when I wanted to tweak the nose of some City snob. I think you know what I mean. Caen, who wrote a book called “Don’t Call in ‘Frisco,” even came around to it in the end.

    But never mind. How does Bourbon & Branch (I know Todd Smith, one of the owners), Thursday January 17 sound? I should be settled in by then. I can meet you there and afterward you can take me home on your scooter. I’ll ride bitch.

  116. Bricology Says:

    “I am a native. I worked at Enrico’s, was friendly with Herb Caen and an investor in Cafe du Nord. Ever go to the Ellington Supper Club Wednesday nights at Cafe du Nord? That was my show.”

    Ah. My wife’s a native too, a fact she never lets me forget. I’ve only lived here since ’85; an arriviste, by her standards. No, I never went to du Nord for anything but the occasional concert; the space makes me a bit claustrophobic.

    “Anyway, I always thought “‘Frisco” was charming and used it when I wanted to tweak the nose of some City snob. I think you know what I mean. Caen, who wrote a book called “Don’t Call in ‘Frisco,” even came around to it in the end.”

    I have no problem with “Frisco” in the right context, but I have met people from far outside of the city who’ve called it that in my company, and I always cringe, waiting for the withering put-down from natives. I miss Herb Caen. I didn’t know him personally, but just seeing him around town and reading his column were reassuring. I do have most of his books, tho’.

    “But never mind. How does Bourbon & Branch (I know Todd Smith, one of the owners), Thursday January 17 sound? I should be settled in by then. I can meet you there and afterward you can take me home on your scooter. I’ll ride bitch.”

    Riding wouldn’t be necessary for me; I live just a couple of blocks away. I can’t guarantee the 17th; I likely have to be up at 4 o’clock Friday morning; I’ll know more definitively within a few days. You can reach me directly at bricolage at mail dot com (note the proper spelling of my e-mail versus my screen name).

    Oh — and pistols or foils?

  117. M Says:

    Just being your rapier wit.

  118. G~ Says:

    Bricology…
    So you’re a dandy, and you live in the S.F.area? Come out and play! http://www.peers.org http://www.gaskellball.com .
    Despite your tendency for long, rambling, self important posts, we might get along. I would be curious to meet you, and happy to have another dandy to chat with. You’ll recognize me, look for another dandy ;-]

  119. Bricology Says:

    G~ wrote “So you’re a dandy, and you live in the S.F.area? Come out and play! http://www.peers.org http://www.gaskellball.com .

    We’ll have to see. I admire the Gaskell scene and have friends who have been in and out of it over the years, but my era of interest is the mid-20th century (‘twixt Swing and Disco), so I’m not sure how much I could get into earlier styles. But I thank you for the invitation, and will consider it.

    Despite your tendency for long, rambling, self important posts, we might get along.

    You must’ve missed Anatomy of the Dandy Rule #13: “Persuasion — A dandy will spare no words in order to make his point be known to all. ‘The critic has to educate the public; the artist has to educate the critic.‘ –Oscar Wilde”

  120. habitually chic Says:

    I’m not sure I agree with your choice. Lapo is the BFF of an artist friend of mine and every time I see him, he looks a bit disheveled. Maybe it’s because all the time he spends downtown or maybe the equally dishelveled artist has rubbed off on him. Whatever the reason, he needs a haircut and a mirror nowadays.

  121. The Cad Says:

    Lapo clearly has far more money than taste. An excellent choice.

  122. hel Says:

    “He’s fluent in six languages” … but ITALIAN! really awful. and laughable.

  123. Louis St.Lewis Says:

    What real dandy would even read this drivel without vomiting?

  124. Decadent Says:

    This thread has provided me a chuckle of the month. Exactly what we need: thrusts, parries and ripostes.

  125. Enzo Says:

    Hmmmmm
    Caraceni suits come from Milan, Patrizia the tranny whore’s real name is Luigi, he was found in the turin Trannies appt wearing a dress and makeup.

    He suffers from herpes.

  126. Patricklehman Says:

    I know I’m a few years late to this party. But I met Lapo in Paris a few weeks ago and found him to be completely charming. I think the young should be allowed the stylistic transgressions of youth. I think being found in a coma with a trannie is about the most glamorous thing in the world, but that’s just me.

    I like that he turned his life around, and is an active participant in a huge, and profitable business, not just a parasite sucking money from his family. I don’t share his style, it’s a bit flashy for me, but I appreciate it. It’s fun, and embodies the color, energy and exuberance of Italy. I think Dandyism implies a splash of vulgarity to cleanse the palette, and jolt the eye into seeing something new. And I suspect a lot of a lot of these “dandies” have a stick up their asses. We’re not curing cancer darlings. Lighten up!

  127. Lord Brummell Says:

    Lapo Elkann is just a stupid hunky that apperas on our gossip reviews for using cocaine, trannies, spaeking in a strange way etc.

  128. Style Inspirations – Lapo Elkann « Alex Donald's Multiverse Says:

    [...] rare for a man not directly involved in fashion and he is certainly one of the 21st century’s notable dandies. (The [...]

  129. Silvia Siqueira Says:

    Ho bisogno di parlare via mail con Lapo Elkann.
    Fiat questione seria in Brasile.
    Nessuno si risolve nulla alla Fiat Brasile, e vuole
    offuscare l’immagine di Fiat in Italia.
    Ho bisogno di aiuto da Lapo Elkan, di dire tutto
    Lo so.
    Grazie .
    Silvia Siqueira Gomes da Silva
    São Paulo – Brasil
    telefono : 55 11-9408-3794

  130. Dandy van het jaar (2007): Lapo Elkann | Dandyisme Says:

    [...] collega’s van Dandyism.net hebben Lapo Elkann uitgeroepen tot dandy van het jaar. Delen/Bookmark Geschreven door Robert Gepost in Trivia Taggad Doutzen Kroes, Lapo [...]

  131. Lapo Elkann – English | Who's Your Dandy? Says:

    [...] man is part of most lists when the subject is stylish men. Mr Elkann also was Dandyism’s first Dandy of the Year in 2007 and dubbed ‘Lapo of Luxury’ by Vanity Fair. GQ also likes talking about Italy’s king [...]

  132. Lapo Elkann – Nederlands | Who's Your Dandy? Says:

    [...] statements staat hij op bijna elke lijst met stijlvolle mannen. Dhr. Elkann was Dandyism’s eerste Dandy van het Jaar in 2007 en hij werd ‘Lapo of Luxury’ genoemd door Vanity Fair. Ook GQ schrijft regelmatig over [...]

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