This is likely my least manly possession:

...but I couldn't help myself. At first, laying on a dingy jumble at an even dingier flea market, I thought this fan was covered in cigar labels or something equally silly. But then I realized they were letterheads, or monograms from endlessly elegant stationary ...

So many letterheads, so many correspondents! Each monogram carefully snipped from her letters and glued to this odd fan. This young lady (I assume she was young, as so many of the crests are from Eastern colleges) really got around, shall we say. All of these are embossed, and in the most sublime colors. And even better, they're mounted to melting silk.

Who was she, and who were these cosmopolitan correspondents, who wrote her from colleges, foreign hotels, aboard ships (including one battleship), from social clubs and sanitariums? What did they write to each other about? What intrigue? It kills me imagining their penmanship.

Think, a whole social set spread across a fan. Perhaps it was a garish form of name-dropping, to fan oneself with a pictorial diagram of your closest 150 friends (or beaus?), but certainly more appealing than a friend-count on facebook.

I applaud you, mysterious popular girl. Would we have been friends? If I knew where it was, I would lay flowers on your grave, with a heartfelt monogrammed note.


Gabriel said...

That is an absolute treasure!

Anonymous said...

Dear Nick Heywood,

Every day, at 9pm pacific time, I walk to my computer and load up your website. And EVERY day, I'm made completely happy by it. You, sir, are an absolutely fabulous curator of all the quirky, worthwhile things in the world. Your writing is clever and quirky and exactly that mix of reverent and irreverent that I think all writing should be.

I dearly hope you end up happy at seventy-nine years old in a little old house (or a train car--your choice, of course) filled with the things you've collected over the years. It will be magnificent. Had I a legion of followers, I would have sent them to you ten times by now.

Sincerely yours, though without monogram,


plain-old-me said...

I love your posts! They are always so intriguing. As for todays, i'd like to think that id be friends with that girl as well.
ps - it doesnt matter that its not manly. its still cool. =)


Emerson Merrick said...

Holy awesome.

Gatsby and Me... said...

Hi - i did a similar historic stalker post - check it out at:


Karlee :)

P.s if you ever get sick of that fan..I'll "store" it for you!

Anonymous said...

I love all the different stamps. They are very nice.

-Zane of ontario honey

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Thanks for commenting on Nick Haus! I look forward to seeing what you have to say. Unfortunately, I had to stop taking Anonymous comments -- too much spam, too much vituperative. Come out from behind the curtain, ye nasty Anonymous! Everyone else, please, I love to hear from you.

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