18 Jul 2016

The Chap Olympiad 2016

For me the Chap Olympiad is drawing references to the great British traditions of grand sports events where people high and low come from far & away to meet friends and family, to cheer, to picnic, to enjoy alcoholic beverages, and to watch sports; like Henley, Wimbledon, Ascot and the likes that come like pearls on a string from early Spring and onwards. People dress up attending these events as spectators; makes an effort.

I attended the event at Bedford Square gardens this weekend; the 12th annual Chap Olympiad.
I just went for the weekend staying at London University in Bloomsbury a mere 3 minute walk from Bedford Square. I had hoped to meet and talk with some of the many chaps and chapettes that I have met in the online universe of Instagram, but I never expected such a lovely day in the company of so many happy, devoted, and accomodating people.

The impeccably dressed @Londonchap and I discussing sartorial matters while sipping champagne
Even in the queue to the entrance people are open and welcoming - all with the same expectations of a great day out. I met this lovely young couple in the queue obviously picnic-sports-spectator-veterans and likewise obviously in love, enjoying each others company.
She remarked to my straw boater that she would never wear straw boaters again as she was forced to do so through her entire school years; her straw boater looking terribly fringed after many years of being pushed heavy-handed into the school satchel when in the school bus - the only time she was allowed to take off the straw hat. When she told that she also played Lacrosse in school I declared that she most certainly attended a proper school!
Which didn't do her any good, she answered looking teasingly at her husband... good fun.

Waiting in line at the entrance

I met so many of my Instagram chums and all were so polite; my old boating blazer from Outfitter Arthur Shepherd, Trinity Street, Cambridge got many compliments.

In excellent company all day with my Danish chums Michael (@tintinfellow) and Mikkel (@mrmastek) drinking the beverage of Gods: Pimm's cup No. 1)

It was also a sports event, but as my queue chums revealed the main event is the picnic with friends; obviously still enjoying the cheers from the crowd and the soft, well-spoken words of the sports commentator. But many a fun games took place at the scene under the tall trees. Wonderfully inventive games like "The hen pecked husband", "Umbrella jousting", "Not playing tennis" etc. 

And in the tents you could get jugs of Pimm's cup No. 1, bottles of champagne, meat pies, and the likes to keep the heroes of the jousting field in high spirits.

Tea pursuit - a challenge calling for a high level of focus
Mikkel helping Michael to get ready for his strains on the jousting field

After the games ended many of the chaps and chapettes went for a snifter at the nearby public house "The Jack Horner" - by which time I made good use of my staying at the nearby University and had quick a shower and a change into proper Dinner suit. Before I joined the crowd at the pavement in front of the Jack Horner.

The Jack Horner 
A splendid day indeed; I most certainly hope to be able to attend next year's event - maybe even bringing more Danish chums

The single most spectacular item of attire present at Bedford Square must be the Baron of Picton's original 1840s Paisley frock
Here in excellent company with the Baron and Michael Quinn from Crockett & Jones

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