French paradox
The term ‘French paradox’ refers to the observation that while both the French and Americans have a diet high in saturated fats, smoke cigarettes and exercise little – which are all risk factors for cardiovascular disease – the French have a significantly lower risk of cardio vascular disease than that of the Americans: 36% compared with 75%. The difference in risk has been attributed to the consumption of alcohol and, in particular, red wine. The French consume 60 L per capita of wine per year, while the Americans only consume 7.7 L per year. (Source: http://www.thewineschool.co.za )

Which explains why I am such an avid Francophile …

Sidey’s weekend theme (for which I am, once again, late) is The Hat.

I love hats and buy them indiscriminately. I wear them in the garden, when I go work, at weddings and even, sometimes, when I am home alone watching television.  You can, therefore, understand how upset I was when I discovered the adverse publicity my habit had been given by the acid-tongued Mr. P.J. O’ Rourke:

“A hat should be taken off when you greet a lady and left off for the rest of your life.  Nothing looks for stupid than a hat.  When you put on a hat you are surrendering to the same urge that makes children wear mouse ears at Disney World or drunks wear lampshades at parties.  Wearing a hat implies that you are bald if you are a man and that your hair is dirty if you are a woman.  Every style of hat is identified with some form of undesirable (derby = corrupt party worker; fedora = Italian gangster; top hat = rich bum’ pillbox = Kennedy wife. Et cetera).  Furthermore, the head is symbolically identified with the sexual organs, so that when you walk down the street wearing a hat, anyone who has the least knowledge of psychology will see you as having a beaver hanging off your penis or feathers protruding from your genitals.  A hat should only be worn if you are employed as a racehorse trainer or are hunting ducks in the rain.”

Very rude, Sir!  I shall wear this hat, feathers and all.

Of late, I am wearing my caterer’s hat. It happened slowly; first one then another of the stylists eyed my work lunch and asked if I would consider that they pay me and I bring them lunch too. And so it began, with a quiche or a salad …

And then the orders started streaming in … customers got wind of it and I was asked for a large lasagne for a dinner party. Someone wanted a special birthday cake …

As my good friend Charlie always says: “And so it goes … “



  1. What an interesting take he has on hats! My son who is not bald almost always wears a beret. I love the idea of ladies hat’s from the 40’s and 50’s but I can not wear them. I look silly.

    Oh and as I understand the French chocolate is no where near as sweet as American.

  2. LOL at that silly man! I am not a hat person, I love admiring fancy ones and wish I could pull them off. My sister looks pretty in almost everything and her daughter delights when I say so, jewelery and bangles look good on her too. I only wear a cap when I am having a bad hair day.
    Morning and Enjoy the weekend!

  3. I love you in a hat… and how RUDE to say that about people who wear hats..
    inferiority complex I’d say…severe toilet training maybe (Medical Dr. Spock).

    Enjoyed this immensely except for the rude fellow…

    Siggi in Downeast Maine

  4. But you look soooooo beautiful in hats so up his rudeships!!!
    I love hats but sadly they do not suit me as they do you – does not stop me from wearing them though xxx

  5. I love those sorts of stats – except I wonder if I’m all white not looking upon the whine when it is already?
    I disagree entirely with Mr O’R. With the passing of the era of habitual liddedness was lost a wealth of elegance and of whimsical absurdity with taste (unlike the infamous Princess creations – B in particular).

  6. Love your hat photo. I also wear chapeaux. I keep them on all day at my cash register and get many complements from “strangers” who assume I’m French (perhaps because I wear a lot of berets?)

  7. My Doc informs me that with my red wine,butter, cream and olive oil intake, I should easily live to be 144 years old

  8. Pretty as a picture. I dig hats, and being from the Midwest, I’m a bit of a rarity. I’m grateful for the red wine knowledge, helps me to decide for tomorrow (Saturday is my restock day, red usually wins unless feeling a bit whimsical) cheers ~

  9. Vive la France! et vive le vin rouge!

    (Another reason why I choose to live here)

    You look just gorgeous in this picture and the one in the following post. Hats are good.

  10. well I’m on safe grounds then: I love my red wine 🙂

    I did have a heart attack twelve years ago but I attribute that to the fact that I wasn’t drinking enough red wine

  11. Gotta love the French and support the theory by drinking Proudly South African. My latest favourite is the very affordable Black Forest by Louis Nel. Retails at around R46/50 per bottle and no I don’t get commission. Try it – he based it on his love for Black Forest cake. It’s a blend of Merlot and Shiraz.

  12. i love to admire stylish hats on other people, but when wearing one myself, can’t just forget about it and act normally. as my mother used to tell me to. 😉

  13. Red wine is good for your health, c’est vrai ! We have this wine called “Humagne” specially dedicated to women who just had a baby. As for the chapeau, you wear them beautifully and with a touch of class. Don’t believe anyone saying the contrary.

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