20 February 1923 / London

Tutmania has gotten totally out of hand. It’s gotten to a point where I can’t even have a simple conversation at the coffee house without it turning Egyptian.

“One coffee please,” I say.

“Ay! Would you be having one golden scarab or two?” or “Ay! Would ye be wanting whole or half-n-half Nile in that thar cup.” Neither of which make any sense, and sound more like something a crazed pirate lost in the desert might say.

Sure, like everyone else, I was fascinated by the discovery of King Tut’s tomb, and its subsequent scientific destructive ransacking. But were I to engage someone regarding the ethical concerns of the smashing of mummies at fairs, all I’d get would be blank stares followed by a shouting of, “TUT TUT TUT TUT! WE’RE NUMBER ONE!” Which, again, I can’t decipher.

One thing that intrigues me is the re-emergence of the Egyptian Saluki. It’s a glorious animal. I had forgotten that my father had one imported years ago, as he thought a pack of jackals was let loose on the estate by some foe, possibly Jack London, and he thought it would aid us in rounding them up. In the end, we never found any jackals and, if memory serves me, the saluki ended up hitching out west with hopes of finding some coyotes to befriend or kill.

Anyway, the saluki's burgeoning fame here is quite striking. It’s considered high fashion for all the ladies to carry one in their handbags. According to Vogue, a lady without a saluki in tow may as well be “a filthy gutter tramp who should just die.” So naturally, women (and even some men) of even the lowest societal rung are desperate to get their hands on one, and strap it to themselves as it barks and thrashes.

My worry is that once this craze has run its course, these salukis will be discarded just like crazes before it. I’ll never forgive myself for ignoring the plight of the snapping turtles after their brief run as high-society’s favorite living animal hat. Which is to say, I’ve learned my lesson. The salukis will always find a companion in Bent Magnus.