June 7, 2011
I’m editing/revising and came across this typo
Rather than just delete the extra anti-, I started wondering what exactly an anti-antimacassar might be.
For those of you who do not know, in the nineteenth century, many men wore macassar oil in their hair. An antimacassar was a cloth cover, often crocheted or embroidered, placed on the top of a sofa or chair to keep the macassar oil off the furniture. Even after macassar oil went out of fashion, antimacassars remained.
I remember a number of chairs in my grandmother’s house that always had a lace antimacassar pinned to the top. Knowing my grandmother, she probably knew the original purpose of the antimacassar and used the lace just to achieve that nineteenth century look.
I picture an anti-antimacassar as a person involved in a movement to simplify interior design by getting rid of the unnecessary, embracing the modern. Of course this movement would not be gentle and pleasant, but rabid and controversial. An anti-antimacassar would be a militant interior designer, bent on molding the world to his/her specifications. What do you think?
I need to get back to revising. Revising is hard and thinking about anti-antimacassars was so much more fun.
Yes, I know, I’m weird.