And Though A Man, By The Passion
Of The Moment, May Be Carried Away To The Extent Of Buying English
Clothes, he usually discovers on returning to his native land that
they are not adapted to withstand the trying climatic
and the critical comments of press and public in this country.
What was contemplated as a triumphal reentrance becomes a footrace
to the nearest ready-made clothing store.
English clothes are not meant for Americans, but for Englishmen
to wear: that is a great cardinal truth which Americans would do
well to ponder. Possibly you have heard that an Englishman's
clothes fit him with an air. They do so; they fit him with a lot
of air around the collar and a great deal of air adjacent to the
waistband and through the slack of the trousers; frequently they
fit him with such an air that he is entirely surrounded by space,
as in the case of a vacuum bottle. Once there was a Briton whose
overcoat collar hugged the back of his neck; so they knew by that
he was no true Briton, but an impostor - and they put him out of
the union. In brief, the kind of English clothes best suited for
an American to wear is the kind Americans make.
I knew these things in advance - or, anyway, I should have known
them; nevertheless I felt our trip abroad would not be complete
unless I brought back some London clothes. I took a look at the
shop-windows and decided to pass up the ready-made things.
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