30 Things That Need to Stage a Comeback, Pronto!

1. Hats on men.

A man in a hat just looks so cool. Not to mention polished and confident.


2. Record players.

Preferably one in a leather case. There is something truly wonderful and evocative about a record popping on an old player.


3. Manners.

A conspicuously missing entity these days. Suddenly it's perfectly acceptable to tap on a PDA throughout dinner or let the lobby door close on someone carrying heaps of grocery bags. Emily Post would be crying into her hanky over this sorry state of affairs.


4. And on that note ... discreet voices.

Oh, how we love to shriek into our cellphones, and make sure that everyone in a restaurant knows every detail of our fevered little lives.


5. Handwritten thank-you notes.

Thoughtfully written ones - and letter writing too. No matter how frequently you speak or email with someone, you'll know them differently if you spend time with them on paper.


6. Crudite platters.


7. Road trips.

Cross-country, Kerouac-style. With unruly maps, and a dog in the backseat.


8. Old-fashioned hotel lobbies.


9. Fountain Pen


10. Red Lipstick.


11. Libraries.

Public ones and personal ones. Along with those lovely bookplates for the front covers, the ones that proclaim: This Book Belongs To ...


12. Lunch ... as opposed to brunch.

The former is so much more dignified. Why would you want to see anyone before noon on a weekend anyway? Revive also: the word "luncheon." Lunch is something you grab. Luncheon, on the other hand, is something that you savor.


13. Good posture.


14. World-tour honeymoons.


15. Manual cameras.


16. Sunday roasts.

In which you invite your family and friends late in the afternoon. This is a particularly nice ritual if you happen to like your family and friends.


17. Bright white tennis clothes.


18. Supper clubs.


19. And on that note, let's bring back dancing.


20. Lockets.

With pictures inside, of course. They're just so endearing and personal. On a less endearing note: people used to store poison inside lockets too.


21. Discussion societies.

Polite ones or impolite ones. It doesn't matter. Let's take a break from online chatter and move back into real rooms with three-dimensional people. Anonymous internet postings try to pass for discussion societies but they are absolutely not the same thing. Too often they breed animosity instead of constructive discourse. Talking is good. Real debate is a dying art.


22. Picnics.

And picnic baskets. They're hard to carry but in the end they are worth it. Wear linen clothing, set up shop under a tree, bring (and read) books, take black and white pictures.


23. Train restaurants.

Good ones, obviously, in wood-paneled cars, with white linen-covered tables. And crystal, china, etc., Agatha Christie-style.


24. Double-features.

Perfect for long, rainy November afternoons, and for prolonging first-date make-out sessions. Let's also bring back pre-feature cartoon shorts.


25. Pocketwatches.

It will make you look wonderfully old-world and curious. Plus, it removes the watch as a dull, ubiquitous status symbol.


26. Lovely, leisurely evening walks.

After dinner, take a stroll around the neighborhood.


27. Game night.


28. Hobbies.


And collections. Book collecting. Butterfly collecting. Bee keeping. Whatever. Hobbies are quaint, and it's nice to do something in which the process is the pleasure.


29. Telegrams.


30. Dumbwaiters.

Truly the stuff of creaking whimsy. Wonderful places to hide from irritating relatives. Equally cunning perches from which to spy on various unsuspecting members of the household: much chicer than a nanny-cam.


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