Category Archives: baseball caps

Deterioration in appearance of the gendarmes

Happier days: the képi as sported by Inspector Jacques Clouseau

Dalrymple writes:

Gone is the reassuring képi in favour of the moron’s baseball cap.

Many of the French police have given up trying to look the part and simply wear international slum-costume. They

dress in jeans with a black shirt with the word POLICE across its back.

This is not difficult to imitate,

and makes it impossible to know whether a policeman really is a policeman or a lout in disguise.

The moron’s baseball cap

Thug’s uniform

Postcard from Les Halles

Dalrymple writes that not long ago, the Paris newspaper the Monde published an article ‘inquiring why so many of the young people from the dispiriting banlieues (suburbs around Paris populated largely by blacks and people of North African ­descent) did not venture into the centre of Paris much beyond Les Halles, a huge concrete commercial centre. They said they did not feel at ease in the centre of Paris, they preferred Les Halles because it felt more American — by which they meant pop music throbbing everywhere, and shops selling ghetto outfits with baseball caps to wear backwards and sideways.’

A law for the suppression of baseball caps

Inelegant, crass, uncouth and moronic

Baseball caps, writes Dalrymple,

have the effect of making the intelligent look average and the average moronic. Can anyone look intelligent or dignified in a baseball cap?

Such caps are, he avers,

inelegant at best and hideous at worst.

People wear them in restaurants,

which is uncouth and crass, and is a habit that I would like to see suppressed with the full vigour of the law.

Petite touche anthropologique: two fashions that may be of carceral origin

Screen Shot 2015-02-08 at 07.39.34Styles of attire which, like rap music, are associated with the jails and black ghettos of the US

The baseball cap worn backwards

The conjecture, writes Dalrymple, is that this

was first employed by visitors to prison, who wanted to get nearer to the prisoner whom they were visiting, and the peak of whose cap prevented this so that the cap had to be reversed.

Screen Shot 2015-02-08 at 07.48.30Trousers worn at half-mast, known as ‘sagging’

This is supposed to be

in imitation of prisoners who were allowed no belts in case they were used for suicide or hanging others, and whose nether garments therefore hung low.

Those who intuit in the low-slung-trousers fashion

Screen Shot 2015-02-08 at 08.07.55an insolent defiance, a deliberate rejection of what would once have been called respectability, are right to do so. The same is true of those who obey the fashion; they are fully aware of the effect it is likely to have on those whom they wish to offend. Such is its purpose.

The fashion

is a symbol of an attempted creation of a mirror-image moral universe, in which what is held to be good by one part of society is held in contempt by the other, and vice versa.

Some leaders of fashion, such as Chris Bryant, the onetime priest who is the UK Labour Party’s ‘shadow minister for the arts’, go further, and dispense with trousers altogether.

Chris Bryant unfrocked

Chris Bryant unfrocked

Dalrymple Public and Reserve Gardens Regulations

Screen Shot 2014-05-06 at 22.28.04

The Dalrympian Eden

The following are strictly prohibited in the gardens:

  • chewing-gum
  • canned drinks
  • jeans
  • basketball
  • skateboards
  • baseball caps*
  • tattoos
  • piercings
  • pasteurised cheese
  • coffee in plastic containers
  • the wearing of suits without ties
  • televisual apparatus, however portable or compact
  • mobile-telephonic apparatus, or any kind of associated prosthesis
  • littering
  • burqa (except for young Englishwomen on Friday and Saturday nights; they will not be admitted to the gardens unless clad in one — the garment has certain advantages)
  • celebrity magazines
  • audible use of the word chair for chairman
  • conversations about association football
  • headphones (the tish-ter-tish that emanates from the user’s supposedly private little world is highly irritating)
  • conversations about the Olympic Games
  • ‘rock’ or other forms of popular so-called music, also the nodding of heads in time to the ‘music’ in the manner of the fatuous nodding dogs in the back windows of cars
  • eating, especially the consumption of ‘fast food’

Thank you for your co-operation.

* Baseball caps, Dalrymple points out, ‘have the effect of making the intelligent look average and the average moronic. Can anyone look intelligent or dignified in a baseball cap?’ They are ‘inelegant at best and hideous at worst’. People wear them in restaurants, ‘which is uncouth and crass, and is a habit that I would like to see suppressed with the full vigour of the law.’