The Dallas Morning News just reported that the gray felt fedora Jack Ruby wore when he shot Lee Harvey Oswald, President John F. Kennedy’s murderer, soon will be up for sale in Dallas.

11:24 am on November 22nd 1963. It definitely was newsy Sunday in Dallas, as authorities were preparing to transfer 24-year-old Oswald by car from police headquarters to the nearby county jail two days after he had committed the most terrifying assassination in the history of the United States. Stepping out from an overwhelming crowd of reporters and photographers, Ruby fired a snub-nosed Colt Cobra .38 into Oswald’s abdomen on a nationally televised live broadcast.

He was wearing a grey felt fedora.

Ruby was then arrested. First, he said that he was acting on behave of President Kennedy. Then, he said it was a spontaneous act with no real reasoning. It was then proved that he was taking Preludin. Finally, his defense attorney, Melvin Belli, agreed to represent Ruby free of charge proving that he was legally insane and had a history of mental illness in his family. Ruby died on January 3, 1967, from a lung cancer.

“It’s a pretty stylish hat,” said Noah Fleisher, a spokesman for the Heritage Auction Galleries that will start taking advance bids for the hat in October and will put it up for auction in early November. “The guy had good taste,” said Fleisher. In 2008, the hat was auctioned for $61,000. According to liveauctioneers.com, the hat is a size 7.25 and includes “Jack Ruby” in gold lettering on the inside of the hat, as one can see in the picture. The price, $16.50, also stamped on the topper, is an unreal figure that just pretends to create the buzz with the pitch that is being faithful to the original price. Here’s what the Auction House says about the piece:

“Cavanagh Hats/New York,” and a two-lion emblem are found on the inside silk portion of the hat. “Jas K. Wilson/Dallas” is printed in gold script lettering on the left of the inside hat band. “JACK RUBY” is printed in gold lettering on the right side of the inside hat band. “Cavanagh Edge” is printed in gold lettering on the front of the inside hat band. Underneath the inside hat band, the style (“5B03 Dawn”) and price ($16.50) can be found. Includes a photocopy of the first three pages of “Accounting of Independent Executor” in the Probate Court No. 2 of Dallas County, Texas, identifying this hat as “worn by Jack L. Ruby at the moment he shot and killed Lee Harvey Oswald on November 24, 1963.”


Also in November, a front page of The Dallas Morning News autographed by President John F. Kennedy on the day he was assassinated by Oswald in 1963 will be put up for auction with the hat.

What is interesting about the whole story is that the news came out particularly today, two days after Ted Kennedy’s death. Commentators on The Dallas Morning News article imply that Ted’s momentum is being used to advertise the auction. “They should put the hat on Ted Kennedy and bury that era altogether,” says one of the readers. Let’s just stick to the hat. 




Therefore a crown.

Yes, we are talking about the extended article published yesterday in The New Yorker on New York’s Mayor Michael Bloomberg, the one and only Lord of this town who is not only running (and winning) his third Mayor election next November, but also thinking about running again in 2012, as he implied in his radio show yesterday morning. What the rigorous profile by Ben McGrath tells us is not very new, which is that, overall, our feudal lord has bought off a lot of criticism and that his arrogance has shut more than one journalist.

Traditional of the New Yorker, however, the piece comes with a sharp, witty cartoon by Gerald Scarfe, the man who created the aesthetic of Pink Floyd’s The Wall (both album and movie) and was the production designer of Disney’s Hercules. So we’re not talking about some random cartoonist, but about one of The New Yorker’s best. This time, the British presents us the complementary cartoon of a slightly derogatory piece about Bloomberg. And the cartoon speaks by itself: the jokey, well-shaped crown, the shady face, the interaction of them two.

Bloomberg is throwing his hat again next November, and so did The New Yorker with this piece. Gerald Scarfe, on his part, created the only hat we want Bloomberg to wear: a rickety crown with a childish aesthetic. Good for Scarfe, bad for Bloomberg. 


No more Che Guevara, please. We had enough with Benicio del Toro this year. Yes, Guevara was very innovative and handsome, but, please, stop selling us his overused myth in every way possible. Now, it turns out, his hot, sensual, exquisite granddaughter is using him as a way to start a vegetarian revolution. Lydia Guevara, 24, posed yesterday for a Spanish photographer; torso naked, covered only by a sling loaded with carrots as bullets, and sensually insinuating. So it’s not only the Colombian guerrillas, the northern-Europe communist kids and Fidel Castro who are using the classic Guevara symbol to promote themselves. Now is also his granddaughter. Please, just leave him alone.

Perhaps the thing that has made him so popular, so mainstream and fashionable, is the style he use to have, with his thick cigar, impressive expressions, avant-garde attitude, and, above everything, his beret, his revolutionary, Basque-style, silver-metal-red-star-on-the-front beret. So popular is this image, so widely promoted, that there is even a store online where you can buy every single Che-accessory you can imagine. Exasperating revolution.