You're headed to the museum, you say? The one that looks like a big, white cube (oh, wait, it is a big, white cube), or the one that hearkens back to ancient Greece, with those stately pilasters and that endless face of acanthus-topped columns (I especially like the cherubim, carved just so, blessedly & eternally picking mangoes and apricots from the lovingly wrought pedimental trees)?
No matter. It's pretty much the same wherever you go.
But it's a serious matter. In going to the museum, you're going to have to navigate some of the trickiest social shoals this side of Monte Carlo. So before you step into the marbled, echoing chambers, please do consider asking yourself the kinds of questions that I'll be periodically posting for you up on this blog:
Ready? Have a pencil handy, or some kind of iPad writing interface or smart phone voice recorder? Awesome - Phew! Wouldn't want you to forget this crucial, socio-economic-disaster-preventing info.
Top hat...do you own one ? No? Well, by George, call your personal assistant and tell him to find the nearest haberdashery. Yes? Brilliant. Jet black, right? Thank g*d. Now, before you put it on, inspect it thoroughly. There shouldn't be any of those little, dastardly lint thingies that regularly cling to such fine materials...It is made of silk, yes? What about unsightly smells and/or stains? Remember the night you were out a little bit late at the club, and smoked that last cigar with that final Highball, circa 3 AM or so? You didn't accidentally burn a hole in it, did you? After all, you were gesticulating rather wildly in response to your friend's Keynesian views on the precarious re-nationalization situation down south (when will that pesky thing resolve itself, already?!)...cigar-hole-making territory, if I've ever heard of it. Take a look, at any rate, just to be sure.
Lastly, height: It's still of fashion? I know, I know, you say, "The higher the better." Fair enough, I'd usually agree with you. And still, there's a rumor floating around that Count Edenmarch (Oh, you're not familiar with him? He's the one who bought that Champions League team from Cyprus - or was it Armenia? - last year) has been wearing a hat 5 millimeters lower than average since last season. Can you believe it? That kind of alteration takes major, major panache. From anyone else it'd be total effrontery, you know? But he's like...such...such style, grace, charm, and old money....like, his cave ancestors were the kind of cave ancestors that had like 1000 boulders to everyone else's 3 or 4. And their boulders were all perfectly wabi-sabi, whereas the others' were a little...pathetic. More like 3-days-out-in-the-sun-and-crumbling Play-Doh pieces, or skipping stones.
So yeah, be sure to consider the 5 mm issue. I'd err on the side of the Count, if I were you.
Oh yes, yes, I know I already put my "last thing" up and all, but this is the final piece of advice. On doffing, use circumspection. You need not expose your coiffure more than absolutely necessary, and when you do, adhere to the "yawn" rule: The time between doff and don should last roughly the time it takes to complete the average yawn, which, having read my latest McKinsey & Co. report, is about 4.75 seconds.