26 November 2010

The Friday Belt: Then Came French Blansac Bridle

A $15 bottle of brandy - A $30Bridle belt - A Souleiado button down. - And Michael Parks. What's it all have in common? You're gonna be goin' down a lonesome highway.

I was 12 when 'Then Came Bronson' came into my family living room. The opening had Parks pulling up to a red light on his Harley, looking like a hipster yanked off Greenpoint Avenue. A connection? Maybe

Some poor 9-5 stiff in a station wagon and a hipster hat (A connection? Maybe.) looks up at Parks and asks, "Taking a trip?" Parks mumbles, "Yeah." "Where to?" the stiff asks. Parks tells him, "Oh, I dunno. Where ever I end up I guess." The stiff looks in the direction of Parks crotch and sighs, "Man, I wish I was you."

Alright, I made up the part about the crotch but it was a great opening to a TV show that was wildly original but as odd as it was uneven. Still, I loved the show despite my mother's observation, "He's a bum! It's a TV show about a bum."

But men are born risk takers and women are born adverse to risk. It's a simple fact of life and it's the reason life insurance was invented. The only solution man has to, "I wanna sky dive, honey." is $5 million worth of term.

That belt and shirt are of French origin. I've touched on Souleiado before. I suppose it's an acquired taste yet the origins are hundreds of years old. The shirt pattern is a hand blocked print from the 18th century. That buckle would look a helluva lot better if it were cut in half but there's something very French about it. An "up yours" quality I have always loved about the French. Even when I'm on the receiving end of it.

I can flash the same "up yours" attitude when I'm in a NYC wine store and ask where the brandy is. "Sir, we don't have any brandy but the cognac is over...Sir? Sir...? Where did he go?" I don't like mixing $80 Hine cognac for a Side Car. Same goes with a splash of brandy in black coffee with melted dark chocolate stirred in. Blansac is French and it's brandy and it's cheap.

I think Parks would dig it. He'd scratch his watch cap while he toes a rock with his boot. Looking up he mumbles, "Yeah, a Side Car sounds nice. Where d'ja get that shirt?"


James said...

I honestly thought I was only one to remember that show. The first time my dad saw me with my watch cap pulled down to my eyes he snatched it back so hard I'm sure its the reason I had a receding hairline at a young age. But it also thought me to be myself and not try to be a TV show.

M.Lane said...

What a great post! I cannot believe that TWO of us remember that show. It was my favorite for a long time.

If I recall correctly, Parks also sang the Long Lonesome Highway song for the show. And he played a REALLY bad guy in the Twin Peaks TV show.


PS: Oh, and I like the belt and shirt too.

Herr Kreisel said...

Hate the belt. Love the shirt. Love your opinion on brandy vs. Cognac. But then it's not a problem getting good cheap French Cognac over here, 15 miles east of the French border.
Great blog, keep on going.

dzot said...

Then Came Bronson intro

I'd call the crotch glance inconclusive.

Anonymous said...

I remember that show too. Michael Parks was very cute. Your blog is great–always something interesting to read about.

Anonymous said...

Then Came Bronson (1969-'70) still has a following today, 41 years later. It inspire a lot of people to ride motorcycles. Check out: www.michaelparks4u.com (see top menu tab on the right) and also: www.jimbronson.com.