"You mean there really is a Peterman?"

2008 Derby Day Hat
Price: $698

The first thing that strikes you about John Peterman in the flesh is that he really talks like that. Like the writer of the now collectible "Owner's Manual," this spring in its 23rd edition. Like the character on "Seinfeld'' (that would be Mr. Peterman), played by John O'Hurley.

There he was recently, at the Traditions furniture store in Walnut Creek, nodding toward a piece he calls the Pulpit Bar. "I'll tell you how that came about. This will reveal what I do in church. I was in Westminster Abbey, sitting in a pew, looking up at the pulpit, with the spiral staircase up to it, and I'm thinking that would make a great bar. And that's the Pulpit Bar. ... Well, what do you do once you start drinking and standing around the bar? You're in control of the bar, you're in control of the conversation. The Pulpit Bar."

"Price, $4,458," you want to add for him. "Delivered in fewer months than it takes to age your home brew."

Many people are surprised to learn that there exists a real J. Peterman, one who isn't Elaine's boss; others remember his heyday, when he built a $75 million business on a whimsical catalog and a cowboy duster, and they wonder whatever happened to him.

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Anonymous said...

Even more interesting, is that John O'Hurley invested in and became co-owner of the J. Peterman Company about ten years ago and currently remains so.

David said...

Whooaaaa, story just confused my mind. I remember my mom complaining in her inimitable way about how irritating the J. Peterman catalogues were.

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