I used to be a real beanie boy, but I did some reflecting over the pandemic, and wanted to grow my personality in a way that would still let me wear hats. I also wanted to not have to think hard about my privilege, have an excuse to buy a typewriter, and have it be unclear how racist I am. I googled these requirements, and Wes Anderson’s Wiki came up. I was vaguely familiar, but in the spirit of the pandemic, I said “fuck it” and decided to go all in. My life has really changed since becoming a Wes Anderson Man, and not just because I get to wear derby hats now.

People assume being a WAM is more complicated than it is. It really just consists of always wearing a bespoke suit, carrying a pocket watch, looking through binoculars at everything, and having a staunch belief that America peaked in 1948. The binoculars are to see that fact more clearly if you forget, as well as to observe people fifty feet away. The hope is that you won’t be funny, but amusing. Most of what you’ll do as a WAM will consist of being weird and very sad outside at the same time. That and saying words like vagabond and rapscallion to yourself as if you’re in a scene involving forced perspective.

If you're not feeling like Wes-ing it up that day, music can really help motivate you. A key component to any Wes Anderson picture is the artfully curated soundtrack. In order to achieve this same effect in real life, I need to constantly max out the volume of my headphones, which could be why I constantly hear a slight humming noise. You'd think everyone at brunch or Warby Parker would love hearing a deep cut from an all-white R&B 1950's French girl group, or a white guy that clearly wants to have been alive in the '60s but wasn't, but I've run into some problems. I've been bounced from Zoom baby showers, socially distanced birthdays, and wakes for poor Irish poets. What's more, I take the bus sometimes, and the bus people will always fight me. Before I've had time to remove my suit coat and hat, roll up my sleeves, and swirl my fists around, I've already lost enough teeth to buy my dentist a summer home.

I've been sober for a decade ever since I was in a ten car pile up that was Wodehouse-level absurd. However, everyone knows a true WAM is divorced and an alcoholic. Not one or the other, but both. It's not fun showing up to work drunk. When I slurred my speech in a meeting with foreign investors, they thought I was making fun of them. While the truest WAM would just try and make a cute movie about French newspapers and hope everyone forgets about events like this, I am not a director. I just had to clear out my desk and leave. It was even harder to divorce my wife, who literally completes me. She didn't get what was going on, and begged me to reconsider. It took all that I had to stare off into what would be the foreground of a Wes Anderson scene and not cry all over my plaid wool suit.

With nothing left, I called up my brother to ask if he'd like to go to India. When he said, “We just had a baby. What the fuck is going on with you lately?” I knew I was possibly alone on this trip. I tried telling him about the tea we could drink and tense brooding we could do there, but it was no use. I ended up hiring an actor that looks like my brother to come with me instead. He ended up robbing me so he could start his own business selling mangos. It was all for the best, though. When I got malaria (WAMs don't believe in inoculation!), the last thing on my mind was money. It was mostly hoping I didn't poop in my suit.

Despite these setbacks, I ended up catching a break. I got a job where all I had to do was wear a turtleneck (slimming!) and stare menacingly on trains and in towers surrounding a hotel that was as nice as, say, a really good Hilton. I was supposed to strangle some people in a cheesy, 1920s movie era style so they could just slowly back away and easily escape. It was mostly fun being paid to be amusing, but I quit after I realized it was only ever going to be turtlenecks. I missed my suits. Even Daschel, who always had a tear in his seam. I also suspected the isolation was driving me slowly insane.

I'm back in the city, now. Next week, I'm supposed to pull off this low-stakes heist with animals, but I don't know if I'm really feeling it. Yeah, they can talk, but is it really necessary? I've heard good things about being a Simon Rich Dude. Maybe I'll look into that.