stapsdoes101things: detail of a hymnbook page showing hymn no. 101, tune 'St Bernard' (101music)
Monocle, Bow Tie

Why yes, this is what I look like when I'm on the train to Basingstoke. This one time, anyway. (Tip: if you ever need to do something really stupid in public, do it on a commuter train. Nobody will look at you.) And, while I didn't take this picture, I did tie that tie - as you can probably see, it being a bit of a mess.

This was on the way to my Pa's seventieth birthday party. It was a very good party. I also sang the tenor line of my great-great-great-grandfather's most celebrated work (The Moon Hath Raised Her Lamp Above, from The Lily of Killarney. Here is a recording - sadly I don't sound much like John McCormack).

In an odd way, I feel like I have fulfilled a long-held ambition - singing tenor, in drag, reviving underappreciated Victoriana. I'm not counting it as a solo at a public event, my family and friends being used to my showing off, but it does complete two other goals:

- 83. Learn how to tie a bow tie (it stayed done up all evening, which is good enough for me)
- 100. Buy a monocle (and, more to the point, wear it in public)
stapsdoes101things: '101' superimposed on a red poppy (101flowers)
Bow Tie

Why do I want to do this?

This seems to me to be one of those useful adult skills that nobody ever bothers to teach you, on a level with being able to shuffle cards with the minimum of fuss and bother. One of these days I may find myself terribly embarrassed upon being exposed as someone who can't tie a bow tie. (NB: a bow tie does not form part of my everyday attire, but I still think I should be able to do it.)

How will I know I've done it?

I'll be able to put a standard (i.e. not velcro, hook-and-eye or clip-on) bow tie on myself or another person, and make it look reasonable.

I'll record this in a post in this journal.

August 2013

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