The Problem with Elvis Style


Elvis, was the King, of course, but for most of his later career he looked like hammered dog shit.  I was thinking about Elvis (I was in Memphis, so it is impossible not to think of him there) because I was shopping in Lansky’s and was looking at their “Clothier to the King” collection.  It’s actually interesting, since they have taken a lot of the old “Lansky Elvis” clothing and some movie pieces and reintroduced them.  Kind of neat.  Read up on the Lansky/Elvis connection, it’s a nice story and to this day, I have never shopped at a friendlier store than Lansky’s.  Doesn’t matter who you are, known or unknown, they treat everyone the same. Really nice people….Early in his career, with the help of Mr. Lansky, Elvis does have some stylish moments.  Lansky’s black and pink creations are really a work of genius in my mind. Later of course, Elvis slowly slipped into the WTF style of men’s wear which sadly, is how he is mostly remembered.  Really? What genius came up with those fucking jumpsuits?

The thing is, Elvis was not really stylish, he had a unique personal style.  One which only he could rock. It was so unique and wholly his, that when imitated, is a total disaster for anyone stupid enough to try it. I mean, come on, EP was a sandwich short of a picnic (I think you have to be, to some extent, to be a great performer), but he was also a virtuoso performer who was good looking and blessed with the charm and charisma to basically to whatever the fuck he wanted and get away with it. Oh, and he without doubt had the best voice of all time, bar none.

But style? Not, I think, in the way we speak of a Cary Grant or Fred Astaire.  Elvis’ style was unique to him and could not be imitated. None of us can rock Elvis’ outfits and get Priscilla (or any other woman, for that matter) to get to know us in a biblical sense. We’d just be laughed at, and fucking deserve it.  Mainly because were not fucking Elvis, and also because we don’t have the looks, charm, charisma or voice to make it happen.  We can emulate the Grant’s or the Astaire’s of the world, but not Elvis.  And this is actually part of his genius (the other part was that he got laid like carpet even while wearing those god awful outfits).  He was unique.  Admire the man’s unique talent, enjoy his beautiful voice, but for God’s sake, please don’t wear his clothes….



Damn impudence and screw the ducks…


Update at The Peabody:  So I arrive, drop the bags with the valet and head for my usual seat in the Lobby Bar…Wait, okay, I went over and spent half of my child’s inheritance at Lansky’s then I went to my usual seat in the Lobby Bar.  Wait, okay, I chucked some fat tourists wearing crocs and very large t-shirts bearing a message from a certain dead guy out of my usual seat at the Lobby Bar.  I sit.

Here’s the thing.  I’m usually, very much a live and let live kind of guy.  I don’t usually expend energy on complaining or creating a scene.  One, because it’s vulgar, and two, because I avoid places where this is ever necessary, thus my sitting in my usual seat at the Lobby bar.  I waited, not exactly with bated breath maybe, but damn close, for the little girl to come around and get me a glass of the needful.  I waited in vain for a bit but thirst drove me to the bar.  The bar keep was a really nice young man and he explained that he had just one girl on duty and she was on break…No problem.

A little later, the missing girl shows up at the table, well, her bad attitude got there a bit before she did, but you know what I mean.  I kinda looked around at first to see if I had inadvertently broken a window or something.  I mean really?  I’m old and haven’t even made you laugh at lame old man jokes let alone pinch you….I sat for awhile in a sort of a state of shock.  I mean, I’ve been coming here, every summer for, well, let’s just say a long time, and not once in all that time has anyone ever been rude or displayed the least bit of the usual “I work in a hotel that caters to tourists who spend gads of money but I hate tourists attitude”.  I walked outside, checked the number to ensure I was in the right place.  I was.

Well hell…Are you shittin me?  This is The Pea-fucking-body god dammit….I mean people say I have an attitude, but I say screw’em.  I don’t work in the hospitality industry (for obvious reasons) but if you do, and being nice to tourists is how you make your living…Then why the fuck are you being a totally rude bitch?  I was quite prepared to throw any number of Bens at you as long as the drinks kept coming and you were even reasonably polite…This is The South dammit.  Someone, I don’t remember who, said she maybe was having a bad day.  I don’t give a shit.  If you live on tips, you better be pro enough to divorce the personal from the professional and do the job.  I mean hell, I usually don’t care, but there are a few things that just piss me off.

I pulled the manager over….We talked and I let him know that if I wanted attitude, I could stay home or go to Chicago next year…Okay, my job was done.  I went back to my usual professional drinking.  I did notice that he went over and pulled her aside….I don’t know what was said but later she did come over and was being extremely nice in a sarcastic way (you know what I mean) so I sarcastically stiffed her when I left.  Never saw her again.

Part II:  Sitting, drinking (you know where) ducks swimming…The duck thing is mildly cute, the crowds who invade the hotel to see the entry and exit are not…Anyway, sitting near the ducks and the drake (who was obviously nothing but a hound dog) was have having a go at that days line up of hens. The Duckmaster (there’s a title I’d like to have to drop at cocktail parties) said that it happens all the time so folks need to get over it.  Nature and all that you know.  I thought it somewhat amusing, but it was making the little girls watching the ducks cry and frustrating all the moms who were trying to come up with age appropriate metaphors to try and explain why Mr. Duck was holding Mrs. Duck underwater, and no they are not fighting, etc.  I wanted to let them know not to worry, you’ll get it in a few years, hell, with the way they raise them now days, probably very few years…

Back to drinking.  More field reports later….