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The Dude's New Duds

Monday, 11 June 2012

The Dude's New Duds

Once upon a time there was a very rich, talented, young actor, whose name was Charles Henry Ulysses Marcel Palovitch.
His close friends called him "CH.U.M.P.".
The rest of the world, of course, called him Charlie.
Charlie's only real fault was that he loved clothes. Child, I don't mean he just liked clothes. I mean that boy LOVED clothes! Let me tell you, that Charlie lived to shop!.
Every Tuesday at precisely 9:00 A.M., Charlie went shopping. Week after week. Month after Month. Year in and Year out. If it was Tuesday, Charlie went shopping. He bought shirts, ties, pants, socks, and shoes. If it was clothes, he bought it. Do you know, Charlie's obsession with clothes became so bad he even asked his family if they'd move out of the house so he could convert their bedrooms into closets!
But although Charlie was rich, handsome, and famous, and had a house full of clothes, he was still not happy.
One day, Charlie was talking to his childhood friend, Samuel Nelson Ichobod Taylor Clayton Harvey or "S.N.I.T.C.H." for short. "What would really make me happy", he confided in his friend, "is the ultimate suit of clothes. Something that nobody else in the whole wide world has".
Snitch shrugged his shoulders. " Well man, you're a rich dude", he said, "Advertise! Let it be known far and wide that you will pay five, no-- ten, no--- ONE HUNDRED THOUSAND DOLLARS for the ultimate suit of clothes. Something that nobody else has!"
" I'll DO it!" said Charles. " MAKE IT SO!"
And so the word went out throughout all the land, Harlem, Watts, Bed Sty, Chicago, and a few other lesser known communities, (you know, the fifty states, that sort of thing), that the famous actor Charles Henry Ulysses Marcel Palovitch was willing to pay big bucks for the ultimate suit of clothes. A suit so unique that no one else in the world would own another suit like it, nor would it be able to be copied.
And so, famous Designers and Tailors came from far and wide. The top brass from Bill Blass were first on the scene. They pulled up in front of Charle's Hollywood mansion with a tractor-trailer load of samples.
Charles went through that truck like a kid in a candy store, but in the end, not one single outfit suited him. "No", he sighed, "You just don't have what I'm looking for". So the brass from Blass took their trailer and hit the road, shaking their heads in disappointment.
Executives from Pierre Cardin sent a personal invitation for Charles to join them at their Paris store. Snitch went along for the ride. They were treated like royalty, and Charlie was shown outfits fit for a king. But Charlie shook his head. Could this be all Paris had to offer? That one special suit just wasn't there. "I am sorry ladies and gentlemen, I guess I will just have to look elsewhere", he said.
On the way home, a thoroughly frustrated Charlie was busy complaining to his friend Snitch. "All I'm looking for is the world's most unique suit!", he said. "Man, how difficult can this be?".
Back home, representatives from Guess and Brooks Brothers were prepared to try their hand. Neither made the grade, and they left in a huff.
Even BVD jockeyed for position. They made a brief appearance, but like the others, they still recieved a chilly reception in the end.
Charlie continued to reject samples from the world's most talented designers and tailors, one right after another. The goods were superb, you understand, it's just that they were not exclusively unique.
Finally, there was only one company left. Their business card read; Homeboy & Soulbrothers, Ltd. - Tailors Extraordinaire
"Show them in" sighed Charles. By now, he was not expecting much .
The room was suddenly abustle with activity, with the entrance of two men and the large trunk which accompanied them . "Greetings, oh great and noble, rich and famous actor, Charles Henry Ulysses Marcel Palotvich" , began the first man, speaking in a deep, rich, oily baritone. "We have come in answer to your pleas", he announced.
Middle aged, slightly bald, and with a handle-bar mustache, the speaker also possessed a huge pot belly. SO huge, in fact, that Charlie privately ventured a guess that it had been years since the man had even seen his own feet.
His partner appeared younger. He stood about six feet tall, and he was skinny as a rail. Charlie guessed he wouldn't weigh one hundred pounds, even if he was soaking wet.
In a nasal twang, the second man informed Charlie, " We have sir, at Homeboy & Soulbrothers, LTD, the perfect material to make you the most well dressed man in the entire world".
"First, however, please allow us to introduce ourselves. I am Mr. Jamaal Homeboy, and this is my associate, Mr. Mohammed Ali Soulbrothers. We sir, are the answer to your prayers".
"Say WHAT?", said Charlie skeptically.
"OK, Mr. Homeboy and Soulbrothers", Charlie sighed. "Let's see what you've got there"
The pair moved smoothly across the room to a big trunk that had just been rolled in. Flipping the latches and opening the lid, together they carefully lifted out an enormous computer, followed by a large bolt of transparent film. The latter looked something like big roll of clear plastic food wrap.
"You see, it's really quite simple," said Mr. Homeboy, as he began unfolding the bolt of see-through material so that he could show it to Charlie, "this specially engineered material has been dusted with a fine layer of a new, hi-tech chemical entitled 'Seethrum."
"Our special computer" explained Mr. Soulbrothers, "has been equipped with a remarkable chip that picks up biofeedback waves from the Seethrum......"
"...enabling the computer to change the color, shape, and texture of the Seethrum from micro second to micro second. That, in turn, allows the appearance of the finished product to itself change, from micro second to micro second." finished Mr. Homeboy.
"Thus, it is always unique and can never be copied", Mr. Soulbrothers concluded proudly.
"THIS sounds VERY exciting " said Charles, suddenly interested. "Would you care to demonstrate it?"
"Our pleasure sir", said Mr. Homeboy, who carefully draped the film across an arm chair, then tapped a key on the computer. Before Charlie's very eyes, the Seethrum changed color and shape. First the armchair turned red and changed appearance to look like a recliner. Then, with another tap on the keyboard, it had blue and white stripes and took on the shape of a sofa.
" Enough!" cried Charles. " this is remarkable, it's WONDERFUL even!. I must have a suit of this fabulous material. But tell me, how do you move about with this heavy computer?"
" Oh this is just for demonstrations" explained Mr. Homeboy, dismissing Charlie's concerns with a wave of his hands.
" Yes indeed, sir, we have a small pocket model for getting around" added Mr. Soulbrothers. " It is so small no one will ever notice" they chorused.
Mr. Homeboy and Mr. Soulbrothers promptly set about measuring Charles for a new suit to be made from the miracle fiber Seethrum. They measured his arms, and his legs, and his waist, and his sleeves, and his neck, and his back and everything in between. Charles wasexhausted by the time they had finished.
Mr. Homeboy and Mr. Soulbrothers then packed up their trunk and promised Charlie his suit would be ready within one week's time. The two left with broad smiles on their faces, and a big down payment in their pockets.
Right on schedule, exactly one week later, Mr. Homeboy and Mr. Soulbrothers returned to the home of Charles Henry Ulysses Marcel Palovitch. They opened their trunk and produced a beautifully cut transparent suit exactly the size of Charles.
Inside the breast pocket was a palm-sized computer, with a miniature keyboard, just as they had promised. They helped Charles put on the suit, and he was delighted to find that it fit perfectly.
"Now", explained Mr. Homeboy "Here's what you do. You simply turn the computer on like this, and type in the style and look you want the suit to have."
So Charles typed in Leisure Suit, Light Grey. Immediately the suit became a Light Grey Leisure Suit.
Delighted, Charlie admired his reflection in the nearby mirror. Next, he typed in Dark Brown Business Suit. Once again the suit changed appearance, promptly becoming a Dark Brown Business Suit.
"This is exceptional" cried Charles. He summoned his close friend Snitch, and invited the entire household staff in, so they too could see his wonderful new clothes.
" Mr. Homeboy and Mr. Soulbrothers", Charlie congratulated them, "You and your company, Homeboy & Soulbrothers, Ltd., have truly outdone yourselves! I will have my accountant issue you a check for one hundred thousand dollars immediately. The deposit I gave you", Charles said, magnanimously, "Keep it as a bonus."
" Why thank you sir" the pair chorused, and with large, toothy grins, they beat a very hasty exit.
" Get my red Cadillac convertible out right away" Charles instructed his chauffeur, "I will change my new suit to a cream color, and I will be a spectacular sight as you drive me through the town with the top down."
And that is exactly what happened. As he rode through the town people stopped and stared. When his car stopped for a red light, people crowded around it and asked for autographs. Charles was thoroughly delighted.
He ordered his chauffeur to pull over to the curb so that he could get out and sign even more autographs.
As he was standing on the street corner happily signing autographs Charlie suddenly noticed that the faces of the people were beginning to change.
At first they were in awe of his wonderful new clothes. But then, he noticed a smirk or two, and he began to hear giggles. Charles was too busy signing autographs to pay much attention to the source of their amusement though.
Finally a tall, slender young lady who was probably the most gorgeous girl Charles had ever seen, approached him. Her eyes were a soft hazel brown, and she had long, flowing chestnut hair.
Charles was smitten immediately, and he just knew she wanted his autograph.
"Ahhh," he said, flirting with the stunning stranger, "A devoted fan, and a very beautiful one at that". He smiled and said, "I must give you a special autograph, lovely lady."
" I am not here for an autograph" she told him. " Aren't you the world-famous actor, Charles Henry Ulysses Marcel Palovitch?", she inquired.
" Ahh, my dear young woman, you have indeed recognized me", he said modestly. Yes, I am THE Charles Henry Ulysses Marcel Palovitch, and I am at your service".
"Well, Charlie", she said, putting her hands on her hips, "Suppose you tell me what in the WORLD Charles Henry Ulysses Marcel Palovitch thinks he's doing, standing on the street corner in broad daylight, signing autographs in his underwear?"
Charles was aghast! " My dear young woman", he sputtered, "Can't you see this is the latest fashion, made entirely from the miracle fabric Seethrum?"
"See-through-'em is RIGHT! , she sniffed. Check yourself, Charlie", she retorted as she turned and sashayed away. "Oh, by the way," she called over her shoulder, "Nice Boxers!"
Charlie glanced down, and his eyes nearly bulged right out of his head! AAAAIIIEEEEEEEEEEE! He could see right THROUGH his brand new suit! Little yellow smiley faces on Charlie's pink boxer shorts grinned happily at the snickering crowd. Charlie was MORTIFIED! Frantically he jiggled the controls on the miniature computer, but to no avail. His underwear continued to show through.

By now, the crowd was pointing and laughing in earnest. Even Snitch was in hysterics. "I could not HELP it", he howled, "I held it together when I saw the pink show through, but I lost it completely with the smiley faces. Where did you GET those things, man?"
Charles shot him a withering look and fled to the safety of his car, ordering his chauffeur to hurry up and raise the the top.
Charlie groped about under the seat, frantically trying to find something to wear. He fished out a bright yellow raincoat that belonged to his nephew Leroy, and quickly slipped it on. "Take me to Homeboy & Soulbrothers, Ltd. immediately!" an angry Charlie bellowed to his chauffeur.
Upon arriving, he stormed into the offices of Mr. Homeboy and Mr. Soulbrothers, who were by now slightly tipsy from all the champagne they had consumed after cashing Charles' check.
" To S.C.A.M." they grinned, as they lifted their glasses in a toast.
" And just what is S.C.A. M.?" growled a voice from the doorway.
"Successfully Conned Another Moron!", they shouted happily. With a joyous slosh, they clinked their glasses together, and turned towards the voice. Uh-oh! There stood Charlie, wearing a bright yellow kids' raincoat over a pair of pink boxer shorts. He looked madder than a wet hen.
"Is it raining?", inquired Mr. Soulbrothers, curiously.
"THIEVES! SCOUNDRELS, LIARS!", Charlie shouted, " Just look at what has happened! You have made me the laughing stock of the city! I will have you arrested and thrown in jail for fraud."
"Now hold on!" said Mr. Soulbrothers, "We delivered exactly what we promised. You have a suit that changed color and shape."
"And it couldn't be copied" added Mr. Homeboy.
"Yes, but look at it now!, snorted Charlie, "There IS no suit, how do you explain THAT?" Mr. Homeboy shrugged his shoulders. "The micro processor only has a sixty minute battery life" he explained.
"And you never bothered to ask us anything about THAT" said Mr. Soulbrothers.
Charles looked from one to the other, and then he looked at himself in the mirror. He realized he had been a first class CHUMP!. Charlie shook his head, as he chided himself for his obsession with clothes. He felt like an idiot.
That was the turning point in his life. Charlie returned home a new person. He packed up all of his clothes, except for a jeans outfit and a Sunday go-to-meeting suit, and he donated everything else to the homeless.
Charlie found all new fame on the TV talk show circuit, postulating the theory that, contrary to popular belief, Clothes Do NOT Make The Man!.
And he lived happily ever after.
The Dude's New Duds by Yvonne Augustin - Copyright 1997 - All Rights Reserved


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