Have you ever noticed, when watching old films, how everyone used to dress up for Saturday afternoon baseball games? Actually, "dress up" is the wrong expression. Folk were just making themselves presentable, which used to involve more than throwing on some pajamas and crocks.
Nowadays, I go out with a pair of jeans and an odd tweed jacket and people ask me why I'm "wearing a suit". The idea that I'd wear a bow tie on a Saturday to a Children's Museum is probably unfathomable to many.
Every now and then--even in the midst of a 366 day bow tie wearing run--I feel the inclination not to be the "dressed up" guy. Like Saturday. So I threw on some boat shoes and a throwback Cleveland Indians ball cap. Nobody could tell me I was wearing a suit, at least.
I grabbed the Otto, one of our gray chambray offerings, but with a little more of a distressed look, here pictured in diamond point cut. With my Bill's Khakis weathered canvas, I think this has a nice casual look to it. Put together, but not overthought, forced, pushy. It was a good occasion to reach for the ribbon belt, and to go sockless--all things I love about spring and summer in Carolina.
Our Main Street Children's Museum is really quite the place. What I love is this: most such museums take the grown-up world and make it smaller. Kids get to pretend to be grown ups by shopping, driving cars, building dams, and the like. All great experiences, for sure. But our Children's Museum does the reverse. It takes the imaginary world of kids' storybooks and blows it up into a life-sized experience.
In fact, the "exhibits" are all inspired by Rock Hill's own Vernon Grant (of Snap, Crackle, Pop fame) and his imagination, and modeled after his illustrations.
Something about this approach seems exactly right to me. And it reminds me of a wonderful saying of GK Chesterton: "Fairy Tales are more than true; not because they tell us that dragons exist, but because they tell us that dragons can be beaten." Here is a world in which children can confirm and exploit the vulnerability of dragons.
I wish I had a clever way to tie this digression into a nice neat bow about bow ties. Let's just say that grown-ups, too, like to play dress-up every now and then.