The other day I went through some boxes with stuff I haven't looked at for years. A lot of it were things I wrote when I studied journalism at the university, and one text from a workshop caught my eye. Here it is, newly translated from Swedish for your reading pleasure:
The cloth, Elvis and me
I have a special cloth. It's from one of Elvis Presley's clothing. Yes, I don't lie. It came with a LP box set that was released in the early 70's. I could write the title down, but that doesn't seem very important. After all, it was the cloth I was going to talk about.
It lies in an envelope with a window, so you can see it. “Something from Elvis’ wardrobe for you” is printed on the envelope. Oh, yes.
The cloth is from a suit Elvis wore in the picture Clambake from 1967. All 10 centimeters of it. It’s toothed on the sides and black. Jet-black, as Elvis probably would have called it. Just like his hair.
It doesn't look like much, the cloth. Yet, it was a part of Elvis' wardrobe once. “It smells like Elvis,” my brother used to say and then bury his nose in it. Thankfully, he didn't blow his nose.
Sometimes I take out the black piece of cloth, touch it and close my eyes. Then I'm there. In the beginning of the movie when Elvis stops at the gas station in his sports car och jumps out. "Would you fill her up while I’ll grab something to eat," he tells the attendant. And walks up to the cafe where I'm busy trying to get a date with the waitress. "A ham sandwich and a cop of coffee, please," he tells her och ruins my chances.
But it's worth it. After all, it isn't everyday you're defeated by the King.
Guess what my teacher wrote? "The funny thing with this text is that it continues after the cloth and into the private chamber of your secret dreams. But with such good humour! It reminded me a little of Woody Allen."
I don't know about that. What I do know is that Elvis' suit in Clambake is mainly white and that I didn't own a piece of Elvis' wardrobe back then. But as I writer, you can always take the liberty of doing some dramaturgical changes, right? As a journalist… well that's another matter altogether.