Is this the end of elegance?
Getting dressed up to go somewhere special used to be a big part of the fun.
By Jim Pappas In many trips overseas over the I
recently had to give a eulogy for a very dear friend and it got me to thinking about the new reality of life as we live it today. My friend was a very elegant wom-
an who I characterized as part Rosalind Russell and part Auntie Mame with a dash of Phyllis Diller mixed in. She was always chic and when she came into a room on those amazingly small, delicate feet, she didn’t just walk, she entered the space. Even at the end, in her glamorous caftans and slippers, she was always the epitome of elegance. This led me to wonder
where the elegance has vanished in our lives. Nowadays, when you
years I was always blown away by the elegance of the French woman... hair cut in magnificent styles and wear- ing such beautifully cut clothing. The French woman's wardrobe was not usually that large but accessorizing made her clothes look different every time. So sometimes it’s not
just the clothing but the grooming and the presentation I decry. I know people who
go to the opening night at the the- atre or any other arts event, you see all kinds of clothing; perhaps it makes everything more egalitarian, but without elegance, there is an ele- ment missing. I recall opening nights at RMTC
when the patrons were getting as much attention as the play. One of our friends had a mother who was a most elegant woman – tall and blonde with amazingly beautiful legs. On opening night, she showed up at the theatre in the first pair of hot pants seen in Winnipeg. They were made out of gold lame and she wore a smashing blouse to complement them. (If you don’t remember hot pants, you are a lot younger than I.) This lovely woman was a sensa-
tion and everyone crowded around her asking where she got her amaz- ing outfit. She confessed that she had seen the New York fashion shows on TV and got excited about the hot pants so she sat down and sewed them that afternoon. Make no mistake – these were very elegant and she cut a wide swath with her beauty, as well.
can look elegant in blue jeans and a cotton shirt. It’s that feeling of el- egance that I am seek- ing... people who carry themselves with dig- nity, humor and a sense of self-worth. I know that I would never go out of the house with- out looking in a mirror.
My wife always used to joke that she won’t answer the phone without her makeup on... (Come to think of it, perhaps she was not too far off – tech- nology can already have people's faces on the phone as we speak.) I want some elegance to remain in
our lives... to live a life full of lovely times, with people and places. I don’t think elegance is dead; it just needs a bit of awakening in all of us. We need to remember to look our best, behave well and enjoy one another while we are still here. So here's a toast to elegance; let’s make it shine in our lives again. Think elegant thoughts and trans- mit them to those you love. Jim Pappas is a man who understands elegance as well as good music. He hosts a show on CJNU and is on the Board of Directors. He will be a regular colum- nist.
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4 great day/of music in October October 22- 25
Once again, CJNU brings you 4 fabulous days of nostalgia music, talk and a whole line up of celebrity guest hosts as we hold our second annual Pledge Drive.
• Pledge $50 or more and receive a flash drive filled with CJNU nostalgic favou- rites!
• Pledge $200 or more and receive a gift cer- tificate from McNally Robinson.
Draws every 2 hours • Special T-shirts designed just for donors Plus every donor will receive some special recognition
Tune in and enjoy a trip down memory lane with lots of excitement, special guests and your favourite music.
You are invited to our OPEN HOUSE:
Sunday, October 25 12:30 TO 3:30 pm.
13th floor of the Richardson Bldg. Portage and Main
Free street parking on Sundays Follow us online at
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